HC Deb 04 December 1893 vol 19 cc356-7
MR. FELLOWES (Hunts, Ramsey)

I beg to ask the President of the Board of Agriculture whether anthrax has greatly increased during the last year, and frequently the only notice the owner has of an outbreak is finding an animal dead; and whether, seeing the importance of immediate notice being given of any outbreak in order that the carcase may be properly buried, he is prepared to fall in with the request of many Chambers of Agriculture, County Councils, &c.—namely, that permission should be given to the Local Authorities to pay out of the local rates a certain sum for the carcase (not exceeding £1) of an animal which has died of anthrax and has been properly buried, and whose death has been notified to the proper authorities?


Perhaps I may be allowed to answer this question in the absence, through indisposition, of the President of the Board of Agriculture. It is unfortunately the case that anthrax has greatly increased during the present year, and, as the hon. Member is aware, the subject is one which has received considerable attention at our hands. I have no power, however, under the law as it at present stands, to authorise Local Authorities to pay even a limited amount of compensation for animals which have actually died of disease, and I am inclined to think that such a measure would be disadvantageous rather than otherwise. It is, of course, desirable that outbreaks of anthrax should be properly notified to the Local Authorities, but owners of stock already have an inducement to notify in the fact that burial and disinfection are performed under the direction and at the expense of those authorities, a consideration by no means unimportant when the character of the disease and its liability to reappear on the same premises are borne in mind.

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