French animal rights activist Brigitte Bardot recently sent a letter to the Irish Council Against Blood Sports supporting that group’s campaign to ban hare coursing in Ireland.
Hare coursing is the practice of releasing a hare and allowing two dogs, usually greyhounds, to chase it down. Along with the animals killed, activists also complain that even hares that survive are terrified and traumatized in the process.
Northern Ireland has temporarily halted hare coursing, but it is still legal in the Irish Republic and the government there has said it has no intention of changing the law to ban hare coursing.
Dick Roche, Environment Minister for the Irish Republic, was quoted by Ireland On-Line as saying,
There is no evidence that hare coursing in Ireland adversely impacts on the conservation of hare populations and there are no proposals to change existing arrangements for the licensed netting of wild hares for live hare coursing.
Which, of course, means that hare coursers in Northern Ireland can simply conduct their hare coursing in the Irish Republic, which doesn’t make the ICABS very happy.
Bardot lends support to hare coursing ban. Ireland On-Line, January 19, 2005.
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