This study's objective was to estimate the permeability of barriers to badger immigration during the Irish Four Area project. These barriers were at the boundaries of removal areas, where there was proactive culling of badgers. Data from the last 3 years of the study were used. Each length of barrier was allocated a space within the removal area. These were further sub-divided into spaces of 0-2, 2-5 km and sometimes of more than 5 km from the edge of the removal area. It is assumed that all, or some, of the badgers caught within these spaces came across the barriers. The barriers were one of the following: external buffers, sea, rivers and political boundaries. The total lengths of the barriers in all areas were: external buffer 128.5 km; sea 70.9 km; river 78.6 km; political 32.2 km. We assume three scenarios: (1) all badgers caught in the final 3 years were immigrants, (2) 75% were immigrants or (3) 50% were immigrants. We test these scenarios using chi-square tests, applying internal buffers of 1 km to counter movements of badgers across zones. Using this approach and multivariate analysis, we found that the permeability of barrier types varied, with sea and external buffers being the most effective barriers. The combined capture data are further examined by the sex ratio in each range, and then the sex ratio in total. Equal numbers of males and females were found, but the source populations were probably predominantly female. If badger management options are to achieve maximum benefits, then the field effectiveness of such barriers needs to be understood.