Research done in the UK though not published (despite being completed 2 years ago) clearly shows that badgers are highly unlikely to infect cattle.
In these areas where these culls are planned, scientists have been collecting badger bodies and scientifically examining them. They have found that none of these badgers have had bovine TB so would have been incapable of passing it on to cattle. Indeed studies have shown that among the badger population, less than 1% of the animals have the illness. In a similar study done in Oxford 3.8% (3 out of 79 examined) of the badgers were found to be infected – yet as none of these animals were showing any outward signs of the illness, which is the point at which they start being able to spread it. A similar study further north found that less that 1% of of the badgers in their study were infectious.
Unfortunately while a DEFRA spokesman includes “no one wants to continue the cull of a protected species indefinitely” it would appear that this is going to continue to be used as a stop-gap and placating mechanism, until the government comes up with something else that can actually solve the problem.
Of course, this ignores the wealth of scientific evidence, that shows a culled population of badgers forces the survivors to roam further meaning that any infected animals are likely to spread the illness more than would have happened naturally