§ Mr. Colvin
To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food if she will give details of the occasions since 1963 when her Ministry has exercised its powers under the Pests Act 1954 to make rabbit clearance orders in England and Wales; and if she will make a statement.
§ Mr. Soames
Rabbit clearance orders were made by the Minister for areas throughout England and Wales during the years 1955 to 1957. Sixty-one orders, which covered counties or parts of counties, were consolidated in 1972 into the Rabbit Clearance Order No. 148 (England and Wales). Under this order the whole of England and Wales, except the City of London, the Isles of Scilly and Skokholm island, is designated a rabbit clearance area. Landowners and occupiers have an obligation to kill or take rabbits living on or resorting to their land or, where this is not reasonably practicable, to prevent rabbits from causing damage.