Day: April 1, 2022

England: Extinction fears for badgers in England after latest cull figures.

There are new fears over the extinction of badgers in some parts of the country following the Government’s latest cull of the animals. A total of 33,687 were killed last autumn through shooting and cage trapping – triggering fury among animal welfare campaigners.

The Mirror reports that figure takes to 174,517 the total number of the creatures killed since the cull began in 2013 – prompting warnings the species could struggle to survive in parts of the country. The Badger Trust said the death toll over the past nine culling seasons represented “over a third of the entire UK badger population”.

Executive director Peter Hambly described the latest statistics, revealed by the Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, as “nauseating”, adding: “The figures are appalling; the attack on badgers intensifies. With scant evidence that badgers spread bTB (bovine tuberculosis) to cattle, this assault on a much-loved wild animal is reaching catastrophic proportions and needs to stop now.”

However, chief veterinary officer Christine Middlemiss said: “I anticipate that intensive culls, if they continue to be effective, will continue to see similar benefits of reduced disease incidence in cattle over their licence periods.”

Natural England licensed “badger disease control operations” across southern and middle England, including in Avon, Berkshire, Cheshire, Cornwall, Cumbria, Derbyshire, Devon, Dorset, Gloucestershire, Hampshire, Herefordshire, Leicestershire, Lincolnshire, Oxfordshire, Shropshire, Somerset, Staffordshire, Warwickshire, Wiltshire, and Worcestershire. The killing took place between August 31 and November 2.

Natural England’s chief scientist Dr Tim Hill said: “Contractors continued to show high levels of discipline and compliance with the best practice guide. The level of accuracy of controlled shooting compares favourably with previous years and with other wildlife control activities.”

Experts blame badgers for spreading bTB around the countryside. More than 27,000 cattle in England were slaughtered in 2020 to tackle the disease.

Defra hopes to have a jab for cows by 2025, and eradicate bTB by 2035. And last July, Prime Minister Boris Johnson fuelled hopes the cull would be wound down.

He told MPs: “We do think that the badger cull has led to a reduction in the disease. Nobody wants to continue with the cull of a protected species, beautiful mammals, indefinitely.”

Mr Hambly warned: “The sickening total will continue to rise. We estimate the number of badgers killed will exceed 230,000 by the end of 2023, with further years of culling already locked into current expansion plans and four-year licences still to run.”

Shadow environment secretary Jim McMahon said the “impact of bovine TB is devastating”. He added: “Our approach to reducing bovine TB must be science-led, through improved cattle testing and accelerating the cattle vaccination programme, vaccinating badgers and better controls on the movement of herds.”

A Defra spokesman said: “Bovine TB is one of the most difficult and intractable animal health challenges that the livestock sector in England faces today. Our bovine TB eradication strategy has led to a significant reduction in this insidious disease.”

Extinction fears for badgers in England after latest cull figures (

Check out all our past badger articles at: 

Search Results for “badger” – World Animals Voice

Regards Mark

England: The Badger. – World Animals Voice

Badgers have friends, and those friends have votes !! – this culling will cost the government dearly; promise !

South Africa: Cape Town animal rights activists up in arms about McLaren Circus.

Animal rights activists picketed as the McLaren Circus rolled into Cape Town as the show, one of the only circuses, still includes animals performances by lions, camels, horses and dogs.

On Saturday afternoon, a group of 100 protesters gathered outside the big top in Muizenberg with placards which read, “the circus is NOT fun for animals” and “you get to go home afterwards, the animals get a cage“.

On the other side of the road, people were queuing to enter the circus. The McLaren Circus confirmed that more than 350 people attended the afternoon show with more than 100 tickets purchased for the evening.

The protest was organised by animal rights organisation, Beauty Without Cruelty (BWC) SA.

BWC chairperson Toni Brockhoven said they wanted to create public awareness about how important it is that animals were freed from the circus.

“Their animals are kept in cages, especially the wildlife. Animals can go to a sanctuary and live out their lives naturally,” she said.

“There should be no human interference or interaction with wild animals unless medically necessary,” she added.

Public relations spokesperson for Mclaren Circus, Karl Hildebrandt, said that BWC has selective empathy regarding circus animals.

“They seem to show more concern about one species than the other, when their mission is aimed at animals, is this not contradictory?”

“What is natural for any animal born in captivity? Our beautiful animals are hand-raised in the circus environment and this lifestyle has become their ‘natural’.”

“Because our animals are captive-bred they would never experience the “wild”. They are fully dependent on us humans to protect and care for them. We have a retirement facility in Meyerton, Gauteng where we already house our retired circus animals.”

Brockhoven said they were not fighting the circus but for the right of the animals.

“The circus keeps saying the lions and tigers are only partaking in the show for three or four minutes of a two-hour-long show, if that is the case, you don’t need to use them,” she said.

She added: “We are against the use of animals. Animals don’t belong in a circus. Kids learn nothing about an animal through watching them in a circus.”

“There are so many options for entertainment and learning. We are against the exploitation of animals for human benefit, especially because there is no need to exploit them.”

Brockhoven said there’s no use to keep animals in a cage all year round.

“If we struggle to control kittens at home, how difficult is it to care for a lion in a cage? I’m not saying they abuse their animals but I am asking how is it possible?”

Chairperson of the Cape Animal Welfare Forum, Karen de Klerk said South Africa needed to get on par with what the rest of the world about circuses.

“The world is systematically banning the use of wild animals in circuses. It is an archaic mediaeval activity,” she said.

She added: “It is disrespectful and cruel towards the instincts of the animal. As a compassionate nation that cares about the suffering of others, we should never condone this.”

De Klerk said it was wholly unacceptable to incarcerate any animal, especially a wild animal.

“You can’t do that and expect it to do stupid, mindless tricks for the entertainment of children. This teaches them all the wrong ideas about having respect for animal lives,” she said.

“These animals travel for kilometres for days at a time in hot, smelly, oily and dirty conditions. They cannot escape and it’s unacceptable on many levels,” she added.

Hildebrandt in response refuted this claim, stating that they managed their travel times to suit the animals.

“We ensure distances between towns are short, to ensure our animals have plenty of time spent outside their transport trailers,” he said.

“Our travel times are either early morning, or early evening, when the weather is cooler. Our transport trailers are also specially designed to ensure they are always cool.”

The SPCA said the McLaren Circus did not receive a permit that was required for animal keeping.

Chief Inspector of the Cape of Good Hope SPCA, Jaco Pieterse, said a specific permit is required in terms of the animal keeping by-law for any establishment to exhibit or place animals for show within the City of Cape Town.

“An Inspector authorised in terms of section 8(1) of the Animals Protection Act 71 of 1962 must be consulted for comment and input by the City before any such permit is issued, which was not done in this instance,” he said.

He added: “This makes any permit issued in terms of the animal keeping by law invalid if any has been issued. The events permit the circus currently possess are issued in terms of other legislation and not the animal keeping by-law.”

Hildebrandt said they don’t believe the protesters truly care about the animals.

“During lockdown, when the circus wasn’t operational, no animal rights group reached out to find out about the animals,” he said.

He added: “This is a social gathering for them to promote themselves. They will do their thing and we will do ours. We entertain hundreds of locals who support us and who love the circus.”

Hildebrandt said law enforcement came to the circus and checked their permits.

“Everything is in order from our side, they were here and made sure of that,” he said.

Cape Town animal rights activists up in arms about McLaren Circus (


WAV Archive.

War in Ukraine: call on European Commission to step up support for animals.

1 April 2022

Four Paws

Open letter

In a joint letter to the European Commission and all Chief Veterinary Officers, Eurogroup for Animals, FOUR PAWS and Veterinarians of Europe ask for additional support to facilitate free movement of companion animals and equines to aid safe evacuations from Ukraine.

Since  the  start  of  the  war,  a number of organisations have stepped in to coordinate relief  measures and efforts to support those affected, both people and animals.

The European Commission advised all EU member states to ease the process for non-commercial movement of companion animals into the EU territory. The swift reaction of  the Commission was welcomed as an expression of European solidarity to those forced to  flee without having to leave their dogs, cats and ferrets behind.

However on the ground, there is still confusion in respect of the applicable rules, with resulting practical problems in supporting the safe evacuation of companion animals and equines from Ukraine. 

In the letter, the undersigned organisations called upon the European Commission and all Chief Veterinary Officers:

To develop recommended harmonised import protocols for the different types of animals applicable in all EU Member States to avoid confusion

To remove all purely administrative, non-risk-related hurdles for importing animals from Ukraine e.g. extra fees for customs, VAT, etc. 

To all work together to make it possible to import animals in a safe way through the establishment of quarantine facilities e.g. for animals coming from shelters and logistic centres in the bordering countries to ensure supplies

To provide access to animal feed and veterinary care as part of the EU’s Civil Protection Mechanism

The communication also urgently requested the European Commission to take the lead and organise a dedicated meeting to coordinate efforts and to help the people and animals of Ukraine.

Read the full letter here

Learn more about how you can help support animals in Ukraine.

Regards Mark

UK: Mountain Rescue Dog Honoured for 11 Years of Service.

First day of the month – thus a new visitor map starts.

The map increases over the month to show where all our visits are from;

Regards Mark

Visitor Traffic for (

Lets start the day with some good news:

Mountain Rescue dog honoured for 11 years of service

A retired search dog who was believed to have been the oldest working Mountain Rescue dog in the UK is being honoured for her service.

Border collie Skye’s dogged devotion saw her carry out 200 searches during 11 years working in the Lake District, before retiring in 2020 aged 14.

On Thursday, Skye will be given the PDSA Order of Merit, described as an “animal OBE”, for her work.

During her service, Skye and handler John Leadbetter, 49, carried out searches in all weathers to help locate missing people.

Mr Leadbetter said: “Skye means everything to me, she’s my best friend on the fells and we’re life-long partners.

Skye checks hikers to ensure their safety.

Her long and distinguished career has not only seen her protect and help people in danger, her ambassadorial work has helped to raise important funds and increase awareness

PDSA director general Jan McLoughlin

“To see her receive the PDSA Order of Merit is a truly humbling and touching experience, and it’s a wonderful recognition of the time and hard work that search dogs and their teams dedicate to mountain safety.“To say we’re chuffed is an understatement!”

Skye is the 36th animal to receive the PDSA Order of Merit, which was set up by the charity in 2014 to recognise animals for their exceptional contribution to society.

PDSA director general Jan McLoughlin said: “We’re incredibly proud to be honouring Skye with our PDSA Order of Merit.

“Her exceptional skills and outstanding devotion above and beyond that of normal companionship make her a very worthy recipient, and we feel this is a fitting tribute to her lifetime of dedication and hard work.

“Her long and distinguished career has not only seen her protect and help people in danger, her ambassadorial work has helped to raise important funds and increase awareness of the incredible work these Mountain Rescue teams perform.”

Skye began her training as a puppy with Bowland Pennine Mountain Rescue Team and went on to qualify with the Lake District Mountain Rescue Search Dog Association in 2009.

She attended searches all over the Lake District as well as going further afield to Lancashire, the Pennines and Scotland.

Now almost 16, she is enjoying her retirement with Mr Leadbetter and his family, who say she still loves to get out on the hills and fells but at a slightly slower pace these days.

Mountain Rescue dog honoured for 11 years of service (

Wonderful !

Regards Mark