Adventure: volcanic ironing

Jasmijn wanted to see the Mt. Liamuiga volcano here on the Caribbean island of St Kitts, but I had some ironing I really needed to do. And so we decided to compromise. Yesterday I carried the ironing board and my laundry up a jungle trail starting 200m above sea level, to the crater rim at 812m. We then descended a series of wet, overgrown cliffs and other extreme terrain using a series of old, filthy ropes, a distance of 175 m into the crater itself, where I assembled the ironing board and cold pressed two shirts, witnessed by a giant bullfrog and an enormous red dragonfly. It’s amazing what you can achieve with compromise! As far as we’ve been able to determine, this is the also the first successful attempt to iron in the crater of a volcano. See also the Facebook gallery and youtube video!

Articles: animal experimentation

A 2011 review by Bateson and colleagues was the first major systematic assessment of the ethics of UK primate experimentation. It concluded that 91% of studies were ethically justifiable. My detailed critique of that review was recently published in AATEX, along with an analysis of UK lab animal use in 2010, and the implications for animal welfare.

Adventure: Australia, Feb. 2013

The pics from my wonderfully fun Australian adventures in February are now online!

Articles and letters: badger killing

No less than 15 other veterinarians and I have signed letters criticising the British Government's plans for mass killing of wild badgers as part of its bovine tuberculosis control strategy, and of the British Veterinary Association's support of the killing. These have been published this week in The Independent, Vet Record and Vet Times. The Independent has also run a major article on this controversy. Our published letters are here.