HC Deb 14 April 1999 vol 329 cc292-3W
Mr. Stinchcombe

To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food what assessment he has made based on badger road-kills as to the extent of their tuberculosis infection. [80486]

Mr. Rooker

Until August 1990 badger carcases were collected and sampled as part of a national road traffic accident (RTA) survey of badgers. Since then RTA badger carcases have been collected and tested on an ad-hoc basis as part of the epidemiological investigation of TB incidents. Information from such carcases is not representative of the incidence of TB in the badger population as a whole.

Both the Krebs report and the report from the Independent Scientific Group on Cattle TB recommended reintroducing the road traffic accident survey as part of a programme to establish the prevalence of TB among badgers. We are currently considering these recommendations.