§ Mr. McQuarrie
asked the Secretary of State for Scotland if, in view of the increase in the number of rabbits, which is causing considerable nuisance and damage, he will consider reintroducing the 50 per cent. grant which was previously paid to rabbit clearance societies in Scotland; and if he will make a statement.
§ Mr. John MacKay:
My right hon. Friend is well aware of the concern about increasing rabbit numbers, despite sporadic outbreaks of myxomatosis and the incidence of severe winter weather is recent years. Given the present constraints on public expenditure, however, there is no possibility of the Government reintroducing grant aid. The answer must continue to lie in occupiers taking control measures on a concerted basis and deriving the benefits.