Tis Pity He's a Writer

Richard Daybell – Novels, stories and short humor

It’s Badgers Vs. Cows in Britain

By the time you read this 100,000 English badgers may have gone to that big animal farm in the sky (or as the Brits might put it, gone for a burton).

badger

In an ongoing British battle, reminiscent of the War of the Roses, it’s badgers vs. cows and every last Brit seems to have taken a firm stand on one side or the other. For a good long time, badgers have been a protected species in the UK.  Badger baiting, a really nefarious sport, was banned in 1835. And more recently at the end of the last century the Protection of Badgers Act made it illegal to kill, injure or speak harshly to one of the little critters.

cow

The critters are members of the weasel family which does make one wonder why they’re thought so highly of. They’re nocturnal which suggests there’s not a lot of interspecies contact between badgers and humans – or cows for that matter. Had you forgotten the cows?

It seems that badgers carry bacteria that can cause bovine tuberculosis, which is considered a major threat to the cattle industry. According to the government, 26,000 cattle had to be slaughtered last year thanks to bovine TB. Thus the cull (sounds a lot like kill).

The cull is to take place in the counties of Gloucestershire and Somerset where the government plans to kill up to 100,000 badgers. They will be lured out of their beds during the dead of night with peanuts and assassinated by highly trained snipers from nearby rooftops.

As you might imagine, badger lovers are not pleased and have been raising an ever escalating brouhaha, so much so that police vacations in the two counties have been canceled for fear of impending violence.  It sounds a lot like the range wars between sheepherders  and cattle barons in our Old West, as portrayed  in Shane, The Virginian, and a host of other movies and television shows.

In fact, I’ve been thinking about a movie based on this modern range war.  It will feature star-crossed lovers — a boy whose uncle runs cattle and a girl whose daddy runs badgers — and plenty of drama, gunfights, growling, churring, and mooing.  I think I’ll call it Badger Dawn.

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16 comments on “It’s Badgers Vs. Cows in Britain

  1. elroyjones
    November 14, 2012

    I’m trying to wrap my mind around this frightening conundrum. TB is an airborne pathogen. Are the badgers sneaking up on the cows and breathing on them while they sleep? There is something, more than one something, wrong with this picture. I suspect the Iranians or the sinister Vlad Putin are working overtime on germ warfare, using the oblivious British cows (the one you have pictured looks rather sly) and badgers as a research test population. Hurry up with the movie, life imitates art you know, the movie may save the planet!

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    • Richard Daybell
      November 14, 2012

      I detect skepticism. Since badgers are nocturnal and cows aren’t, this is a possibility. In fact, just last night, we watched a movie, Cat’s Eye, in which a nasty little gremlin (who looked a lot like a badger) sneaked up on a sleeping Drew Barrymore (she was about five) and sucked her breath out and (maybe) giving her TB to boot. I think it’s important to remember that we’re talking about England here, and a lot of things defy explanation.

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  2. rosedixon
    November 14, 2012

    Haaa go on make the movie. Would be great. I am on the side of the badgers by the way!!

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    • Richard Daybell
      November 14, 2012

      So you’ve got a thing against cows? Look at the face of that cow. I see the lead character there.

      Like

      • rosedixon
        November 15, 2012

        I have nothing against cows lol.I have something against MPs who make silly decisions. The farmers need to clean up their act and obey regulations instead of being crooked.. I even went to Parliament to lobby my MP and took part in the Love The Badger Dance in Parliament Square. Vaccination of cows is the answer but the test that they use does not distinguish between a cow with TB and a cow who has been vaccinated at present. It is the EEC who will not let the cows be transported. But there is a DIVA test being developed which will tell the difference. Plus culling (killing) the badgers over 9 years would result in a decrease of about 16% in bovine TB. Most of the poor cows would be killed anyway for meat.There you are, you can have a Diva cow as your lead character! It would make a great film! Also in your film you have to have the badgers running off with their families and taking the infection to other areas where there was no TB. Badgers are not going to sit there whilst people start shooting.!!

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        • Richard Daybell
          November 15, 2012

          A Love the Badger Dance in Parliament Square — sorry I missed that. My movie is becoming an epic. Toss in a diva cow, an aria or two, a few silly MPs — The Badgers Are Coming, The Badgers Are Coming.

          Like

  3. vyvacious
    November 14, 2012

    Badger Dawn, eh? Are some of the characters going to twinkle in the sunlight?

    Like

    • Richard Daybell
      November 14, 2012

      Twinkling, I don’t know. Maybe we’ll call it Night of the Living Badger.

      Like

      • vyvacious
        November 15, 2012

        Heehee. I love how your comments are so tailored to posts that I wrote 😛

        Like

  4. Kenton Lewis
    November 15, 2012

    How about “Red Badger of Courage?”

    Like

  5. melanielynngriffin
    November 17, 2012

    This is horrible! Had I known, I would have hopped a flight to dance with the other badger fans. This is such an American solution. it’s not that black and white…Say, how about Spots and Stripes?

    Like

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This entry was posted on November 14, 2012 by in Life Is (Fill in Blank) and tagged , , , , , , , .

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