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Firstly, we would like to say thank you to everyone who got in touch when we appealed for a new home and thank you to the media for the coverage they gave us.  We were overwhelmed by the offers and messages of support from all parts of the UK.  Despite the logistics it looked like we had options on a new home for the herd.


However, during what should have been a routine TB test, we had a few reactors to the skin test.  Following further blood tests, for which we have not seen detailed results, the Scottish Government and Animal Health Department came to the decision to slaughter the whole herd of 54 animals..


We have always accepted that bovine TB is a disease which should be eradicated from livestock and have complied with every test over the past 8 years.  However, we believe that the system employed for testing and eradication must be consistent and in accordance with published policy and guidelines and we do not feel this was the case here.  To that end we have repeatedly queried the validity and reliability of the tests applied to our herd and questioned the proportionality of the Scottish Governments decision in this case.  One of our last emails to AHVLA and the Scottish Government detailed our grave concerns over the quality of the departments’ record keeping and the quality and regulatory control procedures being followed given that we were sent post mortem results for an animal that, at that point, was still alive.  We also asked for a meeting with decision makers as a matter of urgency in light of the fact that they had set a date to destroy the herd.  We have not received any written responses to our questions apart from last Friday May 9th when we received this email:


I am sorry to hear you were dissatisfied with the level of service you received from us on this occasion.


We are currently looking into the details of your complaint and will write to you again as soon as we have finished our investigation. We hope to be able to reply fully within the next 15 working days, but if we are not able to do so we will write to you again within that time to let you know when we expect to be able to give you a response, and the reason for the delay.


Please find attached a copy of our complaints procedure so you know how your complaint will be dealt with.


 

The whole herd was slaughtered on Tuesday 13th May


While evidence may eventually be presented which justifies the decision made and which we could accept on the basis of eradicating bTB, the question of consistency remains.  Are the same tests and interpretations that were applied to our herd going to be applied to the rest of the livestock sector?  If this is a policy change it is one that could have devastating repercussions on farmers throughout the country.


The following link is a video of the highlights of being a part of developing this magnificent herd of Scottish bison

  http://youtu.be/cOM69wzBJys


 


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Welcome to the online home of Scottish Bison brought to you by Caledonian Bison Ltd., an agricultural enterprise in Aberdeenshire.
 

Caledonian Bison Ltd. was established in 2005.  Our first breed stock of American Plains Bison moved on farm in late 2006.  Since then not only has the herd expanded from 12 to over 50 animals but we have also undertaken research into many areas of bison handling and husbandry.

The major driving force in developing this form of livestock production is to see the emergence of a sustainable form of meat production with our environmental impact and carbon footprint in mind.

 
 
 

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Scottish Bison