The conference of the Institute of Stock Inspectors concluded yesterday. Mr. W. J. Smith (Young) drew attention to an anomaly in legislation governing the sale of poisons, which allowed a deadly poison like cyanide of potassium to be freely purchased in any chemist's shop. This was being used by persons hunting oppossums for their skins, and valuable stock was often lost owing to the freedom with which cyanide could be used.
In a paper, Mr. W. J. Smith stated that the Forestry Department granted licenses to cut timber on reserves without any reference to the P.P. boards. He advocated the destruction of timber on reserves to an extent that would allow grass to grow.
Mr. D. F. W. Hatten (Bourke) in a paper advanced the opinion that the abolition of the travelling "T" brand on sheep—suggested at a recent graziers' conference—would be a serious mistake in large P.P. districts in the western division. In the Bourke district, with an area of 10,600,000 acres, 18 stock routes, covering 1400 miles, and touching upon 215 watering and camping reserves, the "T" brand on travelling sheep was essential. He suggested the registration of cattle earmarks.
Mr. W. L. Rees (Inverell) read a paper on travelling stock routes, in which he advocated, inter alia, that it should be mandatory instead of optional for P.P. boards to collect rates from teamsters and carriers.
There was a division of opinion on a motion by S. C. Edwards (Lismore): "That P.P. boards be empowered to lease reserves under their control to stock owners, with the approval of the Minister, with a tenure up to 10 years." This was defeated by one vote.
Other papers read were: "Drought Feeding of Stock," by W. G. Dowling (Forbes); "Forage Poisoning," by H. G. Belschner, B.V.Sc. (Nyngan); "Compulsory Dipping of Sheep," by W. J. Smith (Young).
The proposed superannuation scheme designed to benefit stock inspectors was discussed, and the following motion was carried: "That members of the Institute adopt the proposed insurance scheme, provided the retiring age be fixed at 70 years."
It was decided to protest against the proposal to have P.P. boards placed under the control of shire councils.