The BUAV has spoken out against a sharp increase in animal experiments at Welsh universities over the last year. A Freedom of Information request revealed that over 180,000 animals have been used in scientific experiments at universities in Wales since 2010. Four Welsh universities – Cardiff University, Swansea University, Aberystwyth University and Bangor University – experimented on animals.
BUAV Chief Executive, Michelle Thew, told Wales Online: “We are dismayed to learn that the number of animals used in universities in Wales has increased so sharply, in particular at Cardiff University.
Only last year Cardiff University faced public outrage in response to the revelations that kittens’ eyes were sewn shut in controversial experiments.
This increase flies in the face of a Government pledge in 2010 to reduce the number of animals used in experiments. Scientists nowadays have access to a wide range of modern, non-animal research techniques which can be cheaper, quicker and more effective than animal experiments, and should be used instead.”
Earlier this year, the BUAV launched the Broken Promises campaign to hold the government to account on a pledge it made in the Coalition Agreement to ‘work to reduce the use of animals in scientific research’. The most recent statistics from the Home Office show that more than 3.7 million animals were used in experiments in Great Britain in 2011 – an increase of nearly 2% on 2010 and the highest figure since 1986 when modern records began.