Section 1A — Exception: stalking and flushing from cover

Part of Protection of Wild Mammals (Scotland) Bill: Stage 3 – in the Scottish Parliament at 2:30 pm on 13th February 2002.

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Photo of Fergus Ewing Fergus Ewing Scottish National Party 2:30 pm, 13th February 2002

Not quite yet.

The only argument against amendment 94 is that it is a wrecking amendment. The amendment is a compromise amendment, which is designed to secure the agreement of the chamber. How on earth could amendment 94 be a wrecking amendment? How on earth could a mounted hunt procure that only a single dog affects the kill? That cannot be true.

I want to make another point that undermines the argument that Sylvia Jackson has made. If using more than one dog is so bad, why is it lawful under section 1A(1B) and section 3? No attempt has been made to delete 1A(1B), under which more than one dog can be used. There is a certain inconsistency.

In conclusion, I would say that the bodies that are represented in the public gallery—many of which I have worked closely with—are respectable bodies. They have put absolute clear blue water between themselves and some of the despicable campaigning tactics that we have seen and that we all deplore. They are responsible; they operate to the highest standards; they have a code of conduct that is guaranteed to prevent fox baiting; they have decades of experience; and they have informed me that they need amendment 94. If they do not get this amendment, we will be turning them into potential criminals. We must not allow that to occur. To do so would be to allow a grave injustice, which I fear would cast shame on the role that we have played in this bill.