UFU arrange meeting for those involved in proposed badger sett survey

THE Ulster Farmers’ Union is holding a meeting on Thursday 14 February 2013 for any farmer or landowner involved in the proposed 100km2 geographically targeted preliminary badger sett survey which was announced by Agriculture Minister Michelle O’Neill last week.

The UFU have invited DARD’s head of TB and BR policy to speak to the farmers and landowners involved in the proposed sett survey work and explain what it will entail.

UFU president Harry Sinclair said: “600 farmers in the Banbridge and Rathfriland area of Co Down should have already received letters from DARD seeking agreement for AFBI staff to carry out the sett survey work on their land. It is vital that the permission slips attached to these letters are signed and returned as quickly as possible.

“The survey is in preparation for the proposed ‘test, vaccinate or remove (TVR)’ wildlife intervention research. The TVR research which includes the removal of diseased badgers from the countryside and the vaccination of the remaining badgers in the target area is an exciting and positive development for the control of Bovine TB.

“For it to be successful this badger sett survey must be undertaken and needs to have the support of as many farmers and landowners as possible within the survey area. I am encouraging farmers and landowners who have received their letter from DARD to come along to the meeting on Thursday night. It is crucial that farmers and landowners show their support and cooperate in the survey work as this move is a positive step in the right direction to the eradication of bovine TB in Northern Ireland.”

The meeting will be held in Banbridge Old Town Hall on the 14 February 2013 at 8pm.