The BUAV has today criticised a large 14.2% increase in the number of animals used in experiments in Wales during 2011. The total number of animals used was 53,311 which is 6,609 more than in 2010. The figures have come to light following questions tabled by Jonathan Evans, Conservative MP for Cardiff North.
Michelle Thew, BUAV Chief Executive said, “The BUAV is deeply disappointed that over 50,000 animals were experimented on in Wales in 2011. This is an alarming increase of 14.2% on the previous year. Animal experiments are an issue of strong public concern and we believe the people of Wales will be shocked to learn of this large increase. This scale of animal suffering is unacceptable. We need to see meaningful and lasting changes for animals in laboratories. The UK Government should fulfil its pledge to reduce animal experiments.”
During 2011, there were 44,356 mice, 4,249 rats, 746 guinea pigs, 2 rabbits, 279 sheep, 254 birds and 3,400 fish used in experiments.
There was a public outcry earlier this year after the BUAV uncovered experiments at Cardiff University in 2010, in which new-born litters of kittens were raised in total darkness and others were deprived of sight in one eye by having their eyelids sewn shut.