§ Sir A. SINCLAIR
asked the Secretary for Scotland with regard to the findings of the Scottish Departmental Committee on Trawling and Policing of Scottish Sea Fisheries, whether energetic measures, as recommended by the committee, are being taken to secure the necessary international agreement to put into force their second, third, and fourth recommendations with regard to the closing of the Moray Firth and the prevention of the destruction of immature fish; if so, what is the present position of the negotiations; whether the fifth and sixth recommendations of the above committee, prohibiting the carrying of otter boards on small vessels and requiring trawlers when in closed waters to have their trawling gear stowed away, have been adopted or rejected by the Government; whether Reports have been received by the Government on the experience gained by the fast auxiliary cruisers which were added to the fishery patrol last year; whether it is now proposed to increase the number of fast auxiliary vessels to five, as recommended by the above committee; whether sufficient experience has yet been obtaind of the wireless installation placed on board one of the cruisers to enable a definite conclusion to be drawn as to its value, and, if so, whether it is proposed to equip other cruisers with wireless; whether it has been decided to institute a superannuation scheme for the officers and crews of the cruisers, in accordance with the recommendation of the above committee; whether the Admiralty vessel engaged throughout most of last year in fishery protection duties in Scottish waters has yet been replaced by a faster and more efficient vessel; and whether it is proposed to institute legis- 1736W lation to give effect to recommendations 8 and 9 of the above committee with regard to increased penalties for illegal depredations by trawlers and the codification and simplification of the Acts relating to Scottish fisheries; and, if so, when it is proposed to introduce this legislation?
§ Sir J. GILMOUR
As regards the first part of the question, it is proposed that the question of the closure of the Moray Firth to trawling should be raised at the approaching meeting of the International Council for the Exploration of the Sea. The question of the destruction of immature fish is also one for the consideration primarily of the International Council, the British representatives on which are alive to the importance of the matter. The fifth and sixth recommendations involve legislation and are under consideration. The operations of the two auxiliary cruisers are being closely watched, but further experience is necessary before the question of increasing the number can be considered. Sufficient experience has not yet been obtained of the wireless installation placed on board one of the cruisers to enable a definite conclusion to be drawn as to its value. The question of instituting a superannuation scheme is being carefully examined. The Admiralty vessel previously engaged on fishery protection duties in Scottish waters has been replaced by a faster and more efficient vessel. The eighth and ninth recommendations are under consideration.