HC Deb 05 May 1949 vol 464 cc1209-10
48. Mr. Skeffington-Lodge

asked the Minister of Agriculture on what grounds consideration was given by his officers to the firing of explosives to keep jackdaws at the Cheddar Gorge off their nests; and whether he will countermand an order calculated to affect adversely all types of birds nesting in the vicinity.

Mr. T. Williams

Any scheme for keeping down pests which is brought to the notice of my Department is considered on its merits. The particular project referred to by my hon. Friend was in fact ultimately rejected.

Mr. Skeffington-Lodge

Will my right hon. Friend ensure that his officials do not make fools of themselves in the future by using this kind of absurd scheme? Where birds are proving a nuisance, will he take my advice and consult the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds, so that he may get some sound knowledge from them as to how to deal with the situation?

Mr. Williams

I can assure my hon. Friend that my officers do not make fools of themselves. How can they reject a scheme if they have not considered it?

Colonel Dower

Will the hon. Gentleman consult with his friends as to the best way to stop jackdaws nesting in my chimneys?

Mr. Orr-Ewing

Is the Minister aware that the hon. Member for Weston-super-Mare is just as capable of looking after the jackdaws in his constituency as anybody else?