HC Deb 28 November 1938 vol 342 cc46-7W
Captain Conant

asked the Minister of Agriculture whether, in view of the widespread damage caused by grey squirrels and their rapid increase in many parts of the country, he will take similar steps to those taken to deal with musk rats in order that they may be exterminated?

Mr. W. S. Morrison

My hon. and gallant Friend will recollect that at the time when the Grey Squirrels (Prohibition of Importation and Keeping) Order was before the House in 1937, an indication was given that it was not then the intention of the Ministry itself to undertake the destruction of grey squirrels as was done in the case of musk rats under the Destructive Imported Animals Act, 1932, but to rely on voluntary agencies as the best means of dealing with this pest. In order that the position may be reviewed, I have recently asked county councils and county borough councils for information regarding the extent of the infestation of lands within their areas, and as to the measures that are being taken by occupiers of land to destroy this animal.