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Queen guitarist Brian May has joined dozens of anti-badger cull protesters on a night walk through one of the pilot areas.
The rocker got a warm round of applause when he met around 50 people taking part in one of the nightly Wounded Badger Patrols in Eldersfield, near Tewkesbury, Gloucestershire.
The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs said that badger culling was proven to reduce the spread of TB in cattle and that a vaccination was illegal and would not be available for another 10 years.
A Defra spokesperson said: "Scientists have agreed that culling badgers where bovine TB is widespread reduces the level of disease.
“If we had a vaccine for cattle we would use it, but it is currently illegal under European law and won’t be available for 10 years.
"The badger vaccine it is not effective in TB hotspots and has no impact on badgers that already have the disease. There have been no substantiated reports of wounded badgers.”
Earlier, Queen guitarist Brian May told ITV News the cull "cannot help the farmers, that's the biggest irony of all. The only thing that can really solve this problem is vaccination".
Queen guitarist Brian May has visited Gloucestershire today to lend his support to demonstrators protesting against the cull of thousands of badgers in the area.
He told ITV News Correspondent Emily Morgan "We might be losing the fight, I don't believe we will lose the war in the end".
He added that the cull "cannot help the farmers, that's the biggest irony of all. The only thing that can really solve this problem is vaccination".
Around 40 protesters have gathered near Tewkesbury to try and disrupt the badger cull. Many are from the Wounded Badger Patrol, others have simply come on their own to support the campaign. The cull is expected to begin in west Gloucestershire tonight and will run for six weeks.
The operation to police the badger cull pilot reached its full capacity at 8pm this evening, Gloucestershire Police said.
The force has said that the operation will be "operationally independent, impartial, even-handed and fair to everyone whatever their views, interest or involvement in the pilot scheme".
A document outlining the role of the police says it will mediate between parties if there are any protests as well as "responding to any breach of the peace".
Anti-cull protesters are on alert as a second badger cull pilot begins tonight in Gloucestershire.
Some 5,000 badgers are expected to be killed in controlled shootings by trained marksmen over six weeks in Somerset and Gloucestershire.
Protesters are trying to disrupt the cull but the precise locations have not been announced, leading to a game of cat and mouse between protesters and marksmen.
Anti badger cull protesters are claiming to have heard gunshots here in Gloucestershire.
Obviously we cannot verify that, but there are rumours going around.
I am sitting on a hill in Gloucestershire with anti badger cull campaigners. It has been all quiet so far, but there are occasional moments of activity when cars come and go below.
Protesters are watching for cars, lights and noises. They then warn their colleagues further down the hill who will try and disrupt the cull.
No sign of, or evidence of, any shooting yet though.
A protester has told ITV's Daybreak that the badger cull is "unscientific, unethical and illegal" after the six-week pilot scheme began last night.
A number of protesters have vowed to remain in "Camp Badger" in west Somerset for the duration of the cull.
Several animals were believed to have been killed in the area last night, leaving the protester "sickened" and "devastated".
Anti-cull campaigners have been out on patrol overnight in West Somerset, trying to disrupt the badger cull. The Somerset Badger Patrol had at least three groups out, coordinated on social media websites, walking along public footpaths beside farmland.
Marksmen have begun the cull of badgers in two trial zones to try to control the spread of TB in cattle.
Latest ITV News reports
The first badger cull in 15 years has begun meaning that over the next six weeks around five thousand badgers will be shot dead.