OUR Dorset countryside is beautiful at the moment. Butterflies adorn the hedgerows and visit our gardens, bees swarm over lavender and other wild blossoms.

Some of our ancient and unspoilt meadows, as at Kingcombe and Durlston, are full of flowers — a mass of nature’s colours.

Some of the chalk grassland of North Dorset is the same.

It is a delight for Dorset residents and visitors alike.

Against this wonderful backdrop there is currently the threat of a tragic slaughter of wildlife in the coming weeks, if the government announces that the badger cull is to be rolled out into our county.

It is tragic because in no way will it solve the problem of TB in cattle, which is, of course, also a tragic situation.

The government is blatantly ignoring the unequivocal evidence from trial culls and from the culls which have already been carried out in Somerset and Gloucestershire.

In 2013 the expert panel, which was appointed by the government, concluded that trials had shown that culling was ineffective and inhumane.

DEFRA itself has recently produced figures which show that incidences of Bovine TB in the cull zones have increased since the culls started, whereas they are down by 37 per cent in Dorset.

Evidence from those carrying out vaccination in Dorset suggests that the very dry weather in May and June was bad for badgers, who could not find food, and many of their cubs perished.

So the numbers of badgers are already down.

But still we are in danger of having our countryside made the scene of death of thousands of our wildlife in the coming years, at an enormous expense to all of us as tax payers.

If it happens it will be an enormous tragedy, brought about by political need in the face of of all the evidence, which is more likely to increase the incidences of TB which farmers are desperate to eliminate.

What is needed is for Mr Cameron to listen to scientists as well as farmers, and to put in place a programme of vaccination and tight bio-security on all farms to get rid of this terrible disease, and to end this dreadful loss of some of our precious wildlife.

Marion Perriss Back Lane Dorchester