It's provoked a storm of controversy and today government plans to allow badgers to be culled in two test areas to try to stop the spread of tuberculosis are being challenged in the High Court. The Badger Trust, which is bringing the case, wants the court to rule on the legality of the DEFRA move claiming its decision making process was flawed and could even help to spread the disease.
An area in Gloucestershire around Tewkesbury and the Forest of Dean and part of West Somerset around Taunton have been selected to trial the cull. But when the government announced it was going ahead, it knew the decision was controversial.
The two pilots which are scheduled to start in the autumn will last six weeks under what DEFRA says will be "strict licensing conditions". In the South West over a quarter of cattle farms were infected with TB during 2010 and many farmers have long blamed badgers for spreading the disease. The high court hearing is scheduled to last 2 days with a decision expected some weeks later.