There were high hopes that the vaccination program would put an end to the ruthless slaughter of badgers in an attempt to protect cattle, but no-one expected the stripey mammals to willingly put their lives at risk rather than receive the vaccine.
“It seems that a rumour has spread around the badger population that these vaccines are in some way linked to badger autism,” explained local farmer Gordon Renfrew. “This is a shame, because a) there’s no such thing as badger autism, and b) even if there was, this theory would be bollocks.”
Apparently a few rogue badgers have with lucrative books and lecture tours to sell have preyed on the credulity of your average badger-in-the-street, and have spread this imaginary health risk. Many badgers have gone as far as to insist on traditional violent culling rather than have a simple injection which really isn’t going to do anything bad.
Badgers have been seen deliberately facing farmers with guns, allowing dogs to catch them and even throwing themselves off high buildings, all rather than face vaccination on the word of some slimy ex-badger who was struck off badgerhood and now lives the easy life on the lecture circuit in America.
“What amazes me,” said Mr Renfrew, “Is that parental badgers would consider for one second putting their cubs at risk of a horrible death on the word of one discredited ex-badger.”
“What are these parents thinking of? Thank God this doesn’t happen with humans!”