HC Deb 04 April 1887 vol 313 c349

asked the Lord Advocate, Whether his attention has been called to the vast quantity of immature and unmarketable fish killed within the last month on the Ballantyne Banks; whether about 400 tons of undersized herrings were sold in one week for manure; whether the Fishery Board could put a stop to such destructive waste by enforcing the close season, which is the law at the present moment?

THE LORD ADVOCATE (Mr. J. H. A. MACDONALD) (Edinburgh and St. Andrews Universities)

I am informed that it is true that large quantities of immature herring have been captured and sold as manure in the district referred to. After the passing of the Act of 1860 forbidding herring fishing between certain dates on the coast of Scotland, the Fishery Commissioners endeavoured to carry out the prohibition, but found it impracticable to do so. But that Act related solely to the prosecution of herring fishing, and if, as I understand, the immature fish were captured in trawls which were being used for white fishing, the law referred to in the third clause of the Question may not apply. I shall consider the question, and communicate with my hon. Friend.