Wild Justice launches legal challenge against badger cull

Wild Justice launched a crowdfunder yesterday (here) to support a legal challenge against the badger cull.

It’s already attracted a large sum of support but still has a long way to go to reach the target.

Here is the background information from Wild Justice’s crowdfunder page:

Wild Justice opposes DEFRA’s highly controversial Badger cull, licensed by Natural England. Amongst a plethora of reasons we regard it as an unwarranted assault on wildlife which will not eliminate bovine Tb from dairy herds and which operates at appallingly low standards of animal welfare.

We contend that DEFRA and Natural England have failed to define humane practices and that unacceptably high number of badgers, killed by free shooting, die slowly and painfully every year.

In 2014 an expert panel advising Government on animal welfare standards for Badger culls recommended that “in the context of controlled shooting of badgers by trained and licensed contractors, the percentage of animals surviving for more than 5 min after being shot, and the percentage being wounded but not retrieved, should not together exceed 5%”. 

Natural England’s own annual reports show that this standard is never met in practice and that the number of Badgers taking longer than 5 minutes to die or failing to be recovered is consistently about 10% – twice as high as recommended.

So DEFRA appears to us to be pursuing an inhumane Badger cull, NE is licensing it and Badgers are suffering cruelly. Why? Because a humane cull would be even more expensive and would draw even greater attention to the large sums of public money being spent on an unsuccessful control measure.

Wild Justice is raising money to challenge the legality of free shooting under current circumstances and we are seeking a judicial review of Natural England’s licensing decisions.

We want to initiate a debate on the inappropriate methods employed to facilitate the cull and challenge their legality.

This is a costly challenge – we have already spent a lot of time in correspondence with DEFRA and Natural England.  We need to raise £48,500 to pay our lawyers, court costs, costs of research, Crowdjustice fees and Natural England’s costs if we fail to win the legal argument.

Please help with a donation to enable us take this challenge on behalf of Badgers, those charismatic and ecologically essential members of our fauna.

Thank you for any help you can give.

Chris Packham, Ruth Tingay and Mark Avery (co-founders of Wild Justice)

If, for any unexpected reason, we raise more money than we need to fund this challenge then unspent funds will be retained by Crowdjustice and will be available for Wild Justice to use for other similar legal cases on behalf of UK wildlife.


If you’re able to help please click here

Thank you

7 thoughts on “Wild Justice launches legal challenge against badger cull”

  1. Well done WJ – pledge made. Farmers seem to like blaming anything/anyone else for a mess of their own making and then resort to simplistic ‘if it’s a problem kill it’ solutions which all too readily supported by Tory Governments and their agencies. This needless, cruel and utterly unscientific ‘cull’ (aka needless slaughter) must stop.

  2. Why would it take 5 minutes to die, ?? ive shot a lot of foxes, with a .243 rifle and all have been stone dead, except one and it was soon dispatched with a 2nd shot, also many of these badgers that defra or dafta trapped were in cage traps, so a very easy shot to take, ive never shot a badger, but expect that they would be killed as quick as a fox, using the right gun , and they will be killed instantly.

    1. Personally don’t understand how anyone could shoot a fox or a badger. However the fact is, as reported by NE, that 10% either suffer or disappear after being shot. That is not in question. The fact that the cull is inhumane is, and rightly so being challenged!

    2. Why would anyone want to shoot anything and as for your name Keen Killer of wildlife might be more appropriate.i

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