Andrew George, to his credit, has come out against the plans, but I suspect in general the overall picture will be as painted by ePolitix.com:
Rural Lib Dems MPs like Tim Farron support a cull, while urban Lib Dems such as Chris Huhne and Greg Mulholland will be opposed.Desmond Carrington, writing on the Guardian Environment Blog, sets out some of the science that makes the case for a cull unconvincing Ieven if he can't spell "perturbation"):
But the coalition government is on stickier ground when it comes to the science: it pledged a "science-led" approach. First, even after the pilot studies of free shooting, there will still be no scientific evidence that such culling reduces TB, given that the "peturbation" effects will not be measured.There are resources for fighting the cull on the RSPCA and Badger Trust sites.
Peturbation is the disruption by culling of badgers' social groups which is known to lead to higher TB rates in surrounding areas. Spelman's chief scientific adviser, Professor Bob Watson, acknowledged this, telling me it was an "expert judgement" that the peturbation effects would be no worse than with other killing methods. That's opinion not science, in my view. And don't forget that all of the authors of the 10-year trial instigated by Lord John Krebs think culling is an ineffective method of tackling TB.
The other science problem is that Spelman had already all but killed plan B: vaccination. She said this was the solution everyone wanted, but had already cancelled five of the six vaccination trials set up by the previous government. The last government said an oral vaccine for badgers would be available by 2015: this government says they now don't know when - or even if - one will be ready. I find that hard to swallow when a paper has been published showing success in Ireland.