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THE RABBIT COMMISSION

I (PBB PftKBS IsSOOIAHQN.) Stonky. April 3. The Commission appointed to enquire into the best means for the destruction of rabbits have prepared their report, and it was laid on the table of tbe Legislative Assembly this afternoon. .-The Cterpraiissiqjiers dealt at length with the experiments made m Pasteurfg, Butcher's and, Ellis' diseases, and the general conclusions arrived at were that while with Pasteur's disease rabbits were easily killed by microbes being administered m food the disease did not spread freely from infected to healthy rabbits. To infect rabbits largely the bodies of rabbits dying from disease must be broken up by decomposition or by the agency of carrion birds m order to set the microbes free, and the Commissioners concluded that when destruction pn a large scale was required it was necessary to feed animals on microbes, therefore rabbits were as effectually killed by poison. They added that they cculd pot recommend the dissemination of a disease at present not existing m the colonies which had proved disastrous m other countries. It is doubtful whether the disease tried at Titinallogy run is one likely to be communicated among rabbits. The disease of bladder worm, as found m New Zealand, is referred to by the Commissioners, and they agree with the opinions expressed by Professor Thomas, of Auckland, that this disease might be usefully employed, though it was not expected that more than a small percentage of the pest would be killed by inoculation. One disadvantage connected with the use of the bladder worm disease was that, under , certain conditions, it was dangerous to other animals, and even man would not be free from danger. The Commissioners, therefore, could not recommend this as a remedy. Reference is ; made m the report to the rabbit scab discovered m South Australia, and its use as a remedy for the destruction of rabbits, but the Commissioners do not encourage its use with any hope oi success m dry districts. Altogether 140 different schemes for the destruc tion of rabbits have been submitted to . the Comwifsioo, Their deficit: goo.-.

elusions are that the responsibility o l removing the pest must rest with th< landholder, the S a'.e to be undei similar responsibility as regards Crowr p lands. The rabbit pest made a con tinuance of annual leases of Crowr lands impossible, and no finality m the shape of rabbit could be obtained without it being made com $ pulsory to erect proper rabbit fences, The system of professional trappers • and Slate bonuses the Commissioners i think is radically bad, and they recom- ( mend that legislation be introduced to ! compel landowneis and lessees ol infested districts to join m defraying the cost of erecting rabbit fences. [Referring to the foregoing Mr 801 l the New Zealand Commissioner, tele graphs that it Is hoped tbat tbe find report on 140 other suggestions will be ready m a fortnight. The Commission will then be dissolved."] ■ __________ __ ____■_—__■___■___ — i

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THE RABBIT COMMISSION Ashburton Guardian, Volume VII, Issue 2101, 4 April 1889

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