§ MR. J. W. LOGAN (Leicester, Harborough)
I beg to ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if his attention has been directed to the systematic shooting of homing pigeons, often of considerable value; if he is aware that in many places the police seem to regard the protection of such birds as being outside their duties; and, if he will advise the police throughout the country that the owners of pigeons have the same claim upon their vigilance as the owners of any other description of property have?
§ THE SECRETARY OF STATE FOR THE HOME DEPARTMENT (Sir MATTHEW WHITE RIDLEY,) Lancashire, Blackpool
Representations in regard to the shooting of homing pigeons have been received by me on several occasions, but no evidence has been laid before me showing that this shooting is systematic or frequent. Nor have I any reason to believe that the police regard the enforcing of the law for the protection of these birds as being outside their duties or require to be reminded of their duty in the matter. I must point out that the detection of the offence is necessarily very difficult, and no practical suggestions to facilitate it have reached me. Any such suggestions that may be submitted to me I should be glad to consider. The law in regard to the subject is strong enough as it stands, but the difficulty is that of identifying the offenders. ["Hear, hear!"]
§ SIR MATTHEW WHITE RIDLEY
said, that the only objection that he had to issue a circular upon the subject would be that it might imply a belief on his part that the police were neglecting their duty, and until he received some evidence that the police were not enforcing the law he should not like to take such a step. He was, however, quite willing to consider any representations which hon. Members might make to him on the subject, and, if necessary, to act upon them. ["Hear, hear!"]