Government plans for a badger cull in West Somerset suffered a blow today after MPs voted against the scheme.
The motion was passed by 147 votes to 28 but the government is not legally bound by it. The debate was triggered by an e-petition which gathered more than 150,000 signatures.
The cull has already been delayed until next summer after it was discovered there were more of the animals than expected.
Our Political Correspondent Bob Constantine followed the debate in the House of Commons:
MPs have voted by a big majority AGAINST pressing ahead with the controversial badger culls in West Somerset and Gloucestershire.
147 of them voted against the culls and only 28 in favour.
The result is not, however, binding on the Government.
MPs in the House of Commons are debating the culling of badgers to prevent the spread of TB. On Tuesday plans for a cull in West Somerset were postponed until next summer following widespread protests. Many farmers are in favour of a cull because they say badgers spread TB to their cattle.
A debate about badger culling will be held in the House of Commons today, following widespread protests.
Plans for a trial badger cull in West Somerset have now been postponed to next summer. Many farmers are in favour of a cull because they say badgers spread TB to their cattle.
Protesters hoping to stop the badger cull have been lobbying MPs ahead of tomorrow's debate in the House of Commons.
Earlier this week, the Government announced that the two pilot culls, one of which is in West Somerset, are being delayed until next summer. The demonstrators hope they will be called off altogether following the debate.
Anti-badger cull campaigners have always claimed the cull was unnecessary and unscientific. David Woodland was with staff at Secret World Animal Sanctuary in Somerset when they heard today's announcement.
Two pilot badger culls in the south west of England to tackle tuberculosis in cattle are to be delayed until next summer, Environment Secretary Owen Paterson said today.