asked the Minister of Agriculture whether he has now completed the trials with the new Imbra humane rabbit trap; what steps he is taking for its introduction; and when they will become effective.
With regard to the first part of the Question, I would refer to the reply given on 18th February last to my hon. and gallant Friend the Member for Wembley, North (Wing Commander Bullus). The production and sale of this trap is a matter for the manufacturers. It is already on sale.
Can the right hon. Gentleman say when this trap will be made on such a scale that we shall be able to abolish the other? There is great public anxiety in view of the cruelty involved, and unless this production can be expanded it will take many years before the gin trap can be abolished.
As I have told the House previously, we must be sure that we have the right answer. In this trapping year all the trapping done by the county committees will be by this trap and I shall have a report by the middle of May, showing exactly what the experience has been. It has been a big investigation but, by the middle of May, I ought to be able to inform the House of the results of this trapping season.
In searching for the most humane way of killing rabbits, will the Minister bear in mind that the long net, methodically used, may be a good solution of this problem?
Is the new Imbra trap a complicated and expensive apparatus, or relatively simple?
It is certainly more expensive than the present gin trap. Its price is 10s. 6d. compared with the gin, which ranges between 3s. 6d. and 7s. 6d. It is no less complicated in its mechanism, but I understand that it takes a long time to set.