Ministers need to come clean about the true numbers of badgers killed in the Somerset cull, a prominent Labour MP has argued.
The first of two Government pilot culls testing the effectiveness of a cull in curbing the spread of tuberculosis in cattle came to an end last night in West Somerset. Fears were reported during the trial that well below the required 70% of the badger population in the area had been shot.
Anything below the key target amount would put the cull at risk of being ineffective.
Speaking last night, Mary Creagh, Labour's Shadow Environment Secretary, said: "Now the Somerset cull has finished, Ministers need to come clean about what has been happening. Scientists have warned that a botched cull is worse than no cull at all.
"Ministers need to state whether the cull has killed the number of badgers recommended and marksmen have met their licensing conditions. The public has a right to know."
The second six-week badger cull started in Gloucestershire at the beginning of September.