Badger BCG Vaccine

Badger being injected with BCG vaccine after cage-trapped

What is it?

  • Vaccine against bovine tuberculosis for badgers
  • Known as the Badger BCG (Bacillus Calmette-Guérin)
  • Commercially available in 2010, but only available as injection

This video shows how badgers are vaccinated.

Pros?

  • Do not need to euthanize any wildlife
  • Can reduce risk of bTB-positive badgers, and decrease spread across badger social groups
  • Herd immunity, where enough individuals are protected from bTB by vaccination to prevent entire group from being infected

Cons?

  • Expensive!!
  • Need to live cage-trap badgers and check cages every morning (labour-intensive)
  • Need to give booster annually for min. 5 years
  • Does not cure infected animals
  • More effective in younger badgers, which are more likely to be hidden in badger setts

Costs?

  • Estimated over 5 years = £3,365 per vaccinated badger

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