HC Deb 15 October 1945 vol 414 cc699-700W
Sir T. Moore

asked the Minister of Agriculture when he proposes to withdraw permission from war agricultural executive committees to use steel traps.

Mr. Williams

The authority given to county war agricultural executive committees to permit the setting of spring traps in the open is already limited to cases where this method offers the only effective means of destroying rabbits. The question is therefore one of balancing the disadvantages on humanitarian grounds of the open setting of traps (a matter on which I have considerable personal sympathy) against the urgent need for maximum food production and for the ridding of a pest which takes heavy toll of growing crops. I am seeking the views of committees on the effect which a withdrawal of permission for open trapping would have on their rabbit-destruction campaign, and I will consider the matter again in the light of these views.