The Oxfordshire cull licence permits between 1640 and 2223 badgers to be killed in 2020 within a single defined cull zone (area 49). Licences usually run for 4 years and are based on a policy of killing up to 70% of the badger population every year. Culling can commence on 1st September.
Natural England still refuse to release cull zone locations. We do not know which parts of Oxfordshire will be included or whether culling will take place close to our vaccination areas.
Culling works very much like vaccination up to the point where the badger is shot. So we know that it takes about two weeks to establish peanut bait points and encourage badgers to regularly visit the stake out points. The cull company has almost certainly already started work in the field. Cages may start to appear in August. Setts and foraging areas may already be under increased surveillance to help prevent trespass, adverse publicity and possible interference.
Continue to walk the public footpaths, monitor 'your' setts and report as usual. Inform the police if you come across any suspicious activities or possible wildlife crime - the cull may encourage an increase in badger persecution.
If you should find peanut bait points (peanuts hidden under heavy stones only a badger or human could move), trail cams or traps leave them strictly alone. It is illegal to interfere with a licenced cull operation. Please don't share suspected cull operation locations on social media.
OBG (and other organisations) will continue vaccination well into September. We also deploy cameras and traps to check activity and for badger rescue all year round. These are always clearly labelled. If you come across our kit, please don't interfere or publicise. Respecting the confidentiality and security of 'our' landowners is one of our core values.
If you have any concerns or want to discuss taking part in activities such as wounded badger patrols or sett mapping please contact us. Note that OBG does not endorse any illegal activity or harassment.
Donate — to OBG's vaccination project
Report & watch — setts, badger sightings, incidents
Lobby your MP — Badgers have friends who VOTE
Email DEFRA, the Secretary of State and copy to your MP: