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Wednesday, 23 September 1936

Senator ALLAN MACDONALD (WESTERN AUSTRALIA) . - I take this opportunity to bring before the Government the need for the erection of a laboratory in the north-west of Western Australia to investigate and advise upon the various diseases affecting the cattle in that portion of the Commonwealth. Last year I visited the Commonwealth laboratory near Townsville, and was permitted to inspect the results of investigations by the Commonwealth Council for Scientific and Industrial Research into the diseases of Queensland cattle. There are many diseases in that State which fortunately are not prevalent among the cattle in the north-west of Western Australia. Nevertheless, there exist in that portion of my own State several serious diseases, notably pleura. If anything is to come of the negotiations conducted by the Minister for Commerce (Dr. Earle Page) with the British Government with a view to increasing the Australian quota for the export of beef to Great Britain, tho investigations of the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research will have to be extended. We cannot possibly hope to fulfil a greater quota of export beef until the pests and diseases which exist in the north-west of Western Australia have been brought, under control. I. urge Senator A. J. McLachlan, as Minister in charge of development, to look very favorably upon the request for a research laboratory in that. area, as 1 have made it as the result of collaboration with Mr. M. P. Durack and Mr. John Forrest, both of whom are largely interested in and have made a life study of the Western Australian cattle industry. Numerous admirable sites for a laboratory exist, and if one is erected ample opportunity for work will be presented to the investigating officers.

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