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Agriculture (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1976

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This is the original version (as it was originally enacted).

9Power to provide for the destruction of wild life

(1)This section applies to any disease other than rabies which is for the time being a disease for the purposes of section 1(1)(a) of the Diseases of Animals Act 1950 (general power to make orders for preventing the spreading of disease).

(2)The appropriate authority, if satisfied in the case of any area—

(a)that there exists among the wild members of one or more species in the area a disease to which this section applies which has been or is being transmitted from members of that or those species to animals or poultry of any kind in the area ; and

(b)that destruction of wild members of that or those species in that area is necessary in order to eliminate, or substantially reduce the incidence of, that disease in animals or poultry of any kind in the area,

may, subject to the following provisions of this section, by order make provision for the destruction of wild members of that or those species in that area.

(3)Before making an order under this section the appropriate authority shall consult with the Nature Conservancy Council.

(4)Every order under this section shall specify the area to which it applies, the disease to which it applies, and the one or more species to which it relates.

(5)An order under this section providing for the destruction of wild members of one or more species in any area may make provision for authorising the use for that purpose of one or more methods of destruction that would otherwise be unlawful, but shall not do so unless the appropriate authority is satisfied that use of the method or methods in question is the most appropriate way of carrying out that destruction, having regard to all relevant considerations and, in particular, the need to avoid causing unnecessary suffering to wild members of the species in question.

(6)An order under this section may include provision—

(a)for ensuring that destruction of wild members of any species to which the order relates is properly and effectively carried out, and in particular for preventing persons from taking into captivity, harbouring, concealing or otherwise protecting wild members of any such species with intent to prevent their destruction, or

in any other way obstructing or interfering with anything which has been, is being or is to be done or used in connection with that destruction ;

(b)for regulating the ownership and disposal of the carcases of members of any such species destroyed in the area to which the order relates.

(7)Before commencing the destruction of wild members of a species on any land within an area to which an order under this section applies the appropriate authority shall take all reasonable steps to inform the occupier of the land and any other person who may be there of the authority's intention to carry out that destruction and of the methods of destruction to be used; and it shall be the duty of the authority to ensure that destruction is carried out on any such land in as safe a manner as is possible in all the circumstances.

(8)Where an order under this section is in force, the appropriate authority shall have power to take such measures (including the erection of fences or other obstacles) as the authority considers appropriate—

(a)for preventing the movement of living creatures into or out of the area or any part of the area to which the order applies while destruction of wild members of any species to which the order relates is being carried out in the area ; and

(b)where destruction of wild members of any such species has been or is to be carried out in any part of that area, for preventing the recolonisation of that part by members of that species for as long as the authority considers necessary to prevent reappearance among them of the disease to which the order applies.

(9)As soon as may be after the appropriate authority is satisfied, in the case of any land, that any measures affecting that land which have been taken in connection with an order under this section are no longer necessary, the authority shall remove from the land anything placed or erected on it and shall take such other steps as are reasonably practicable to reinstate the land.

(10)A statutory instrument containing an order under this section shall be subject to annulment in pursuance of a resolution of either House of Parliament.

(11)In this and the following section—

  • " animals " includes horses ;

  • " the appropriate authority "—

    (a)

    in relation to any disease not mentioned in paragraph (b) of this definition, means the Minister ;

    (b)

    in relation to brucellosis, tuberculosis, dourine or infestation with the maggot of the warble fly, means, for England and Wales, the Minister or, for Scotland, the Secretary of State ;

  • " land " includes land covered with water;

  • " species " means any species of bird or mammal, except man; and references to wild members of any species in an area are references to members of the species in the area that are neither domesticated nor held in captivity.

(12)This and the following section and the Diseases of Animals Act 1950 shall have effect as if those sections were contained in that Act; and without prejudice to the construction of references to the Minister in any provision of that Act, an order of the Secretary of State under this section shall be treated for the purposes of any such provision as an order of the Minister.

(13)The preceding provisions of this section are without prejudice to any powers conferred on the Minister or the Secretary of State by any provisions of the Diseases of Animals Act 1950.

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