HC Deb 05 May 1964 vol 694 cc151-2W
59. Sir B. Janner

asked the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food whether he will now make a statement about the result of his investigation regarding the extent to which the Warble Fly (Dressing of Cattle) Order, 1948, is carried out by farmers; and what steps he now proposes to take to deal with the infestation of cattle by the warble fly.

Mr. Soames

This Order requires all cattle visibly or palpably infested with maggots of the warble fly to be dressed with a derris preparation periodically between 15th March and 30th June. The Order has been ineffective because no one can prove whether an animal has been dressed or not, and all the information I have received indicates that it is poorly observed.

Systemic insecticides offer the best chance there has yet been of controlling this pest, and as they kill the maggot before it develops, their use should result in much cleaner hides. But an Order which included systemics as an alternative treatment to derris would be no more enforceable than the present Order.

The Secretary of State and I have therefore decided to revoke the Order at the conclusion of the current dressing season. We shall then pursue a vigorous advisory campaign through our field staff for the control of warbles as a matter of good husbandry. Derris dressing or systemics will be recommended as appropriate and we believe this approach will result in greatly improved control of the pest.

Forward to