Animal Voice: Issue 8 - August 2011
Campaign newsletter of the Irish Council Against Blood Sports

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In this edition:

01. Coursing cruelty continues with Deenihan licence
02. Coursing permanently banned in Northern Ireland
03. Licence to net hares for coursing heralds 'season of cruelty'
04. Landowners: Help save the Irish Hare
05. Sinn Fein asked to change its pro-coursing stance
06. Campaign video: How to eliminate the hare from coursing
07. Senator Power joins calls for end to coursing
08. Call on Three to disassociate from pro-hunting group
09. bans ads for cruel Larsen traps
10. Photos: Foxes caught in Larsen traps
11. Baby swan rescued by Laois heroes
12. ICABS TV 1
13. New Online Poster: Chased to death / Foxhunting cruelty
14. Tell Michael Moynihan TD that coursing is cruel
15. Hunt refused planning permission for kennels
16. Pat Rabbitte sought licences for cruel glue traps
17. Cock fighting in Dundalk
18. Man calls for fly spray ban
19. Semi-state chiefs face the sack in contracts row
20. 'Dead and buried': Free vote on restoring fox-hunting in UK
21. Register your opposition to "Toro de la Vega" barbarity
22. Bulls banned as performing animals in India
23. Opinion Poll: Please vote NO
24. Campaign Quotes
25. Letters to Editors
26. Petitions

01. Coursing cruelty continues with Deenihan licence

ICABS has expressed disappointment to Minister Jimmy Deenihan following his shameful renewal of a coursing licence that will result in suffering for thousands of Irish Hares.

The licence issued by the Minister for Arts, Heritage & An Gaeltacht to the Irish Coursing Club allows affiliated clubs all around Ireland to capture hares from the wild for another season of coursing cruelty.

From August 12th, coursers were free to net hares for use as live lures at coursing meets. There are in the region of 70 coursing clubs in the country, and each club requires approximately 100 hares for their 2 or 3-day meetings which take place from October to February. As in the past, pregnant and nursing hares may end up in the nets, leaving vulnerable young behind in the wild.

"The coursing licences you have approved will cause immeasurable suffering to thousands of Irish Hares," ICABS stated in an email to Minister Deenihan. "Hares will suffer the fear and stress of being captured from the wild and running for their lives in front of greyhounds. Among the injuries likely, thanks to these licences, are broken bones, dislocated hips, damaged toes and mashed internal organs."

This latest licence comes as a huge disappointment to the majority who want blood sports banned. The Irish Council Against Blood Sports' campaign will continue, however, until the day coursing becomes history.

We have renewed our appeal to the government to follow the example of our neighbours, UK and Northern Ireland, and ban this despicable animal abuse.

The licence issued by Jimmy Deenihan can be viewed at:


Contact Minister Deenihan now and urge him to follow the example of Northern Ireland and permanently ban coursing in the Republic.

Jimmy Deenihan, TD
Minister for Arts, Heritage and Gaeltacht Affairs
Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht
23 Kildare Street, Dublin 2

[with a copy to An Taoiseach -]
Tel: (01) 631 3802. Fax: (01) 661 1201.

(If you have time, please compose your own personal letter. Otherwise, feel free to send the short sample letter below. Be assertive, but polite, in all correspondence. Thank you.)

Dear Minister Deenihan,

I am one of the majority of Irish citizens who want hare coursing outlawed. I am writing to express my great disappointment that you chose to license another season of this animal abuse. Please stop licensing coursing and follow the excellent example of your counterpart in Northern Ireland who has announced a permanent ban there.

I urge you to act on the wishes of the majority, show compassion and bring this blood sport to an end in the Republic.

Yours sincerely,


Forward a copy of your correspondence to your local TDs.

Find out the name of your TDs and their email addresses at:

02. Coursing permanently banned in Northern Ireland

17th August 2011 marked another milestone in the campaign to outlaw hare coursing on the island of Ireland, as a permanent coursing ban came into effect in Northern Ireland.

Northern Ireland Minister for Environment, Alex Attwood, said in a statement to the media that "hare coursing events should not take place in a modern, progressive, civilised society."

However, here in the Republic, now the last bastion of this backwoods barbarism, it's business as usual for the hare coursers, with the licence to net hares issued recently by the Minister for Arts, Jimmy Deenihan.

The two remaining Northern Ireland clubs, Ballymena and Dungannon, now travel south to be hosted by Tubbercurry and Cavan, putting even more pressure on our timid hares.

Hare coursers claim that the muzzling of greyhounds, introduced in 1992, eliminates the kill from coursing. However, while preventing the ripping apart of hares, muzzles do not prevent hares from being struck and mauled by greyhounds, resulting in injuries and death.

In any event, hares are terrorised from the time they are snatched from the wild in nets to the day they are used as live lures before greyhounds at coursing meetings. This is unacceptable in what passes for a supposedly civilised country.

Surely our government should be acting in tandem with the Northern Ireland Assembly in protecting hares on the island as a whole.

Welcoming the ban, Mary Friel of the League Against Cruel Sports Northern Ireland said: "The League is delighted that the Northern Ireland Assembly has finally and permanently banned the barbaric sport of hare coursing. This historic decision is a huge step forward in eradicating cruel blood sports and we look forward to the Assembly making more improvements to animal welfare such as banning the use of snares."

ICABS congratulates all the campaigners and politicians in Northern Ireland who helped achieve this historic ban. May it not be long before the whole of Ireland can celebrate an end to coursing and permanent protection for the hare.

03. Licence to net hares for coursing heralds 'season of cruelty'

Licence to net hares for coursing heralds 'season of cruelty'
Irish Times, August 17, 2011. by Sean Mac Connell

The issuing of a licence to allow the capture of hares for coursing has been described as "a huge disappointment" by the Irish Council Against Blood Sports.

It said the Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, Jimmy Deenihan, by issuing the licence to the Irish Coursing Club to capture hares from the wild, heralded "a new season of coursing cruelty".

"From today, coursers will be out with their nets, snatching timid hares from the wild for use as live lures before greyhounds at coursing meetings," said Aideen Yourell, campaign director with the anti-blood sports council.

"There are in the region of 70 coursing clubs in the country and each club requires approximately 100 hares for their two- or three- day meetings which take place from October to February.

"Pregnant and nursing hares may also be snatched up in the nets, leaving vulnerable young behind in the wild," Ms Yourell continued.

The council said captured hares were subjected to utter terror, stress and the risk of injury and death from being struck and mauled by muzzled dogs.

"Not a season goes by without hares dying from such batterings, according to documents obtained by ICABS under the Freedom of Information Act over the last number of years," the council's statement said.

"This is a huge disappointment to the majority who want blood sports banned. The Irish Council Against Blood Sports' campaign will continue until the day coursing becomes history."

04. Landowners: Help save the Irish Hare

With a licence from Minister Jimmy Deenihan, Ireland's coursers are currently netting hares for their cruel blood sport and will continue to do so over the coming months. The Irish Council Against Blood Sports is calling on landowners to act to protect hares and keep coursers out.

If you are a landowner, please download, laminate and display copies of our poster - "Hare Sanctuary - No Coursing, No Netting, No Hunting".

Download the poster now (pdf, 92kb)

Please note that the licence does not give coursers the right to enter land without permission so if a trespass occurs on your land, please contact the Gardai immediately. The contact details for Garda Stations can be found on If possible, take photos and video footage to present as evidence.

Thank you.

05. Sinn Fein asked to change its pro-coursing stance

ICABS is calling on Sinn Fein to reverse its pro-coursing stance and stop defending an activity that causes suffering and death to the Irish Hare.

On BBC Radio Ulster's Talkback show, a Sinn Fein representative tried to defend the party's policy.

Listen to the show:


Previous to 2010, Sinn Fein had an anti-coursing policy. Many within the party are against coursing. Urge the party to reinstate its previous policy, in line with the majority view that this cruel activity should be outlawed.

Contact details for Sinn Fein:

Tel: (353) 1 8726100 / 8726932
OR 02890 347350

(If you have time, please compose your own personal letter. Otherwise, feel free to send the short sample letter below. Be assertive, but polite, in all correspondence. Thank you.)

Dear Sinn Fein,

I am one of the majority of Irish citizens who want hare coursing outlawed. I find your party's current pro-coursing stance unacceptable. I urge you to reverse it and give your backing to a ban on this deplorable animal cruelty.

In coursing, hares suffer and die at all stages - during the capture, during the time they are kept in captivity and during the coursing meetings where they run for their lives in front of greyhounds. Among the injuries recorded are broken legs, damaged toes and dislocated hips.

Yours sincerely,


06. Campaign video: How to eliminate the hare from coursing

A new ICABS campaign video shows drag coursing in action. Drag coursing, in which dogs chase an artificial plastic lure, eliminates the hare suffering associated with live hare coursing.

07. Senator Power joins calls for end to coursing

Fianna Fail Senator, Averil Power, has been thanked by ICABS for joining calls for an end to hare coursing. The Dublin North East politician was among those who urged Minister Jimmy Deenihan to refuse a coursing licence.

08. Call on Three to disassociate from pro-hunting group

Mobile phone operator, Three, has teamed up with pro-hunting group, Countryside Alliance, for a project aimed at getting people online in rural areas of the UK.

The Countryside Alliance, previously known as the British Field Sports Society, is a pro-hunting organisation which has defended not only foxhunting but also cruel activities such as hare coursing and terrier work. It is campaigning for a repeal of the Hunting Act which brought foxhunting to an end in England and Wales.

A spokesperson for the Countryside Alliance is on record as saying "we will always have field sports [i.e. blood sports] at our core."


Please join us in complaining to Three about their association with a pro-bloodsports group.

Hugh Davies
Director of Corporate Affairs
Hutchison 3G UK Ltd.
PO Box 333
Glasgow G2 9AG

Email Three UK:
Email Three Ireland:
Tel from UK: 333 (free from a Three mobile) OR 0843 373 3333
Tel from Ireland: Freephone 1913 or 083 333 3333

09. bans ads for cruel Larsen traps

Classified ads company,, has been thanked by ICABS for adding cruel Larsen traps to the list of items forbidden on its website.

The compassionate move came following an ICABS appeal in which we outlined how crows and magpies suffer a terrible fate in the traps.

Designed in Denmark in the 1950s, Larsen traps are now banned there as they are considered so inhumane. They use a permanently trapped bird to lure in other birds. They fly down on to the trap, fall through a collapsing platform and find themselves trapped too.

Overcome with the fear and stress of confinement, the creatures desperately jump against the bars of the cage in a futile attempt to escape. Some will suffer broken beaks and cut heads before being grabbed and strangled to death.

In our appeal to, we highlighted that some birds die of starvation or thirst when traps are abandoned. We quoted a National Parks and Wildlife Service conservation ranger who reported that he "found many larsen traps with dead decoy birds which appeared to have died from starvation."

When magpie parents are caught in Larsen traps, their orphaned chicks will starve to death in nests.

The traps are also used to cruelly catch other creatures such as foxes.

Find out more about our Ban cruel Larsen traps campaign and get involved today - click on "Campaigns" at

About Launched in 2006 by, Ireland's largest community website, is a community based marketplace where individuals can buy or sell items online. It has facilitated the sale or purchase of thousands of items across every type of category imaginable.

10. Photos: Foxes caught in Larsen traps

Take a look at our new photo album - Larsen Trap Cruelty - and join our calls on Minister Deenihan to ban these traps.

Email "I support a ban on Larsen traps" to Tel: +353 (0)1 631 3802

Click on Campaigns at to find out more

11. Baby swan rescued by Laois heroes

ICABS commends John Oxley and Noel Morton on their compassion and bravery and we thank the Laois Nationalist for highlighting this positive story...

Local heroes
Laois Nationalist, 09 August 2011
By: Sarah Rowe

Two Laois men risked their lives when they went to the rescue of a baby swan outside Stradbally last week.

John Oxley from Timahoe and Noel Morton from Mountrath, both in their twenties, jumped into Kellyville Lake, just outside Stradbally, to rescue the baby swan that was trapped in rushes and couldn't free itself.

"It was dark and the swan wouldn't have survived so we had to help it, but when we got over there were two baby swans and one of them had fishing tackle with a hook through its little beak and around its neck, so we got them free and brought them back to the bank where they were safe," said John.

Local photographer Robert Redmond, who raised the alarm, describes the events that surrounded the dramatic rescue.

"I was out walking with my wife around 9pm last Tuesday night when I noticed a little swan caught in the rushes with a parent swan trying to eat them off. It was struggling awfully. I couldn't believe it. It would have died."

"The two lads were walking there too and they volunteered to swim over and help the little thing out," Robert explained.

John and Noel selflessly jumped into the lake and swam over to rescue the baby swan but discovered more than they had bargained for!

Thankfully, the lads managed to rescue the baby swans and reunite them with their family of six, who are all still swimming on the lake safely.

However, Robert feels that conservationists could have done more to help them.

"It's fantastic that they were rescued but I walked around that entire lake that's nearly a mile long fearing the worst, until the lads got to them," said Robert.

"I was looking for a phone number to ring around wildlife specialists to do something, but I found it amazing that there's a hut there but no sign with a number on it to ring."

12. ICABS TV 1

Watch ICABS campaign videos on our relaunched online channel, ICABS TV 1.

Please share our videos on Facebook and Twitter or embed them into your website to help spread the word about blood sports cruelty. Thank you.

13. New Online Poster: Chased to death / Foxhunting cruelty

"If foxhunting is a sport, pardon me for being rude / How the hell can I compete, if I'm running away from you?"

Featuring an extract from "Karma" by Rebecca Burke, our new online poster conveys the cruelty of foxhunting and highlights the suffering of foxes as they run for their lives.

Download the poster from

Join the campaign against foxhunting today.
Click on "Campaigns" at

14. Tell Michael Moynihan TD that coursing is cruel

Fianna Fail TD, Michael Moynihan has claimed that those involved in coursing are "decent and honourable people" and that they maintain "animal welfare standards second to none".

Deputy Moynihan's ridiculous comments were made during a Dail debate on the Welfare of Greyhounds Bill 2011 (30 June 2011).

"Those involved in the industry and coursing clubs are genuine, decent and honourable people, providing employment and entertainment and maintaining animal welfare standards second to none," he stated.

ICABS has told Deputy Moynihan that there is no decency or honour in taking a timid creature from its habitat and forcing it to run for its life in front of greyhounds. "Praising coursers for their animal welfare standards is laughable," we added. "Coursing subjects hares to stress, injury and death. Among the injuries hares suffer are broken legs and dislocated hips."


Please tell Cork North West TD, Michael Moynihan that those involved in hare coursing are cruel and heartless. Urge him to stop defending their deplorable activity and instead support legislation banning the bloodsport.

Michael Moynihan, TD
Dail Eireann, Dublin
(With a copy to Fianna Fail party leader, Micheal Martin, TD -
LoCall 1890 337889 Ext.3595
Fax: 01 6184612

Constituency Office, Percival Street, Kanturk Co. Cork - Tel: 029 51299
Charleville Office - Tel: 063 21088

See our campaign poster at

15. Hunt refused planning permission for kennels

The Irish Examiner has reported that the South Union foxhunt "has been denied planning permission for kennels after Bord Pleanala upheld an objection by the Brothers of Charity".

The May 2011 newspaper report outlined that the Brothers of Charity objected to the development on a number of grounds, including concerns that barking dogs would disturb the children in its nearby residential centre and that it would lead to an increase in traffic on a narrow country road.

In their objection, the Brother of Charity wrote: "Welfare and care of the children in the community house takes precedence and priority over animals housed for the recreational enjoyment of others."

Bord Pleanala also considered submissions from individuals who expressed concern about the possibility of dogs escaping or causing distress to sheep.

The Bord's move followed an earlier decision by Cork County Council to grant permission for the kennels to be built.

Footage from the infamous South Union Hunt is featured in the ICABS "Ban Foxhunting in Ireland" campaign video. Scenes of a fox being dug out of the ground with a terrier biting into its scalp has disgusted tens of thousands on Youtube.

Watch the video at:
Read the full Irish Examiner report at:


Ask Cork County Council to consider the unacceptable animal cruelty involved in foxhunting in considering any future applications from hunts.

Planning Department,
County Hall,
Carrigrohane Road, Cork.
Tel: (021) 4276891
Fax: (021) 4867007

16. Pat Rabbitte sought licences for cruel glue traps

It has been brought to our attention that in March 2009, Labour Party TD, Pat Rabbitte, asked the Minster for the Environment if he would grant a licence to permit the use of glue traps.

ICABS has expressed disappointment to Deputy Rabbitte, currently Minister for Communications, Energy & Natural Resources. We told him that glue traps are considered one of the most cruel and inhumane traps and that they are illegal in Ireland.

"Animals caught in glue traps have been known to bite off their own limbs in a bid to escape," we stated. "When their faces get stuck in the glue, they suffocate. Animals also die of starvation in these traps. Victims not only include rodents but also birds, frogs, squirrels and other small mammals."

Join us in asking Deputy Rabbitte to refrain from making any similar requests for licences in the future.

Tel: 01 678 2000

17. Cock fighting in Dundalk

The Irish Times has highlighted concerns over cock-fighting in Dundalk following the discovery of injured birds "in a dreadful condition".

The August 2nd report details how Louth SPCA were called to "two incidents where fighting cocks had been abandoned". Three were found dumped on the Dublin Road near the local hospital while two others were rescued from the Blackrock Road.

"We know cock-fighting goes on in places all over Ireland and that there is big money passing hands," Fiona Squib, an inspector with the Louth SPCA is quoted as saying. "My concern is that cock-fighting is going on around the place or else that the birds are being used to bait dogs. They tease the dogs with the birds because a cock will use its talons to draw down on an animal and draw blood."

Gerry Donaghy of Louth Poultry Fanciers Club said the birds found in Dundalk "were in a dreadful condition".

Cock-fighting is illegal in Ireland. The Irish Council Against Blood Sports calls on members of the public to report any information about cockfighting activities to the Gardai. For the phone numbers of Garda stations all over Ireland, please visit: You can also pass on information to the ISPCA National Cruelty Helpline on 1890 515 515.

Read the full report on the Irish Times website

18. Man calls for fly spray ban

A listener to BBC Radio Ulster's "Talkback" phoned in to the programme to call for a ban on fly spray.

"I think it is extremely cruel," caller Michael said. "[The fly] falls down, lands on its back and it can be there for two or three minutes kicking."

"All these beings are living in their own environment and they have a right to life," he added.

Listen to an extract from the Talkback programme (3rd August 2011)

19. Semi-state chiefs face the sack in contracts row

Irish Examiner, August 18, 2011
By Conor Ryan, Investigative Correspondent

The boards of two semi-state companies have been warned to sack their chief executives if they refuse to sign revised contracts.

It follows a dispute with the Department of Agriculture over the chief executives' ability to amass annual bonuses and their right to claim backdated awards.

Agriculture Minister Simon Coveney said the situation was "not acceptable". It follows a lengthy standoff between his department and the bodies concerned, Horse Racing Ireland (HRI) and Bord na gCon.

In the case of HRI, the board reversed chief executive Brian Kavanagh's voluntary salary cut of Eur15,573 in 2010 to compensate for his lack of bonuses during the economic crisis.

It also insisted on paying him Eur37,550 in outstanding bonuses despite "very strong" opposition from the minister's predecessor, Brendan Smith, and his officials.

Meanwhile, Bord na gCon's Adrian Neilan has been employed since January 2007 but has never signed a contract. This is because of additional clauses added to the standard contract for semi-state bosses.

Both boards were written to in March by secretary general of the department, Tom Moran, and told they should deliver a contract "without delay".

He referred to guidelines which said: "In the absence of a signed contract the employment should be terminated."

HRI's Mr Kavanagh was paid a bonus of Eur43,111 for his work in 2008 but was due another Eur21,089 which is set to be paid this year.

The board awarded him another Eur57,000 bonus for 2009. He was paid Eur40,539 of this in 2010 and the remaining Eur16,461 was deferred until 2011.

Documents, released under the Freedom of Information Act, reveal that, last November, Mr Smith was briefed on Mr Kavanagh's position and said the expectation that he would be paid accrued bonuses as "outrageous".

HRI also clashed with the department regarding Mr Kavanagh's salary, after the board reversed a voluntary cut to his Eur190,000 pay.

The board increased his salary by Eur15,573 to compensate Mr Kavanagh for a decision to forego bonuses from 2010 to 2012.

In Mr Neilan's case, he was paid a bonus of Eur31,166 for 2007. In a recent letter to the board, Junior Minister Shane McEntee said that, under 2006 contracts, guidelines no bonuses should be paid without a signed contract.

Bord na gCon has denied a Eur15,000 training course he was sent on this year was in lieu of a bonus.

Both bodies confirmed contracts are still the subject of negotiations and neither man would claim a bonus for 2010, 2011 or 2012.

Mr Coveney said he expected the issue to be resolved "within weeks".

20. 'Dead and buried': Free vote on restoring fox-hunting in UK

Fox hunting vote 'killed off' by new generation of young urban Tory women opposed to bloodsports
Daily Mail, 14th August 2011

By Brendan Carlin, Mail on Sunday Political Reporter

David Cameron's pledge to hold a free vote on restoring fox-hunting was last night declared 'dead and buried' by a new breed of modernising Tory MPs.

The so-called Blue Fox group of ambitious young urban Tories boasted that they had finally killed off any prospect of a Commons vote on reviving bloodsports before the next Election.

They claimed that because of their public opposition to a return to hunting, the Prime Minister would now drop any attempt to stage a vote in this Parliament.

And to the anger of party traditionalists, one of the new group - all elected to the Commons last year - even compared foxhunting to the barbaric medieval sport of bear-baiting.

Caroline Dinenage, 39, MP for Gosport in Hampshire, told The Mail on Sunday: 'I don't hold with the idea that just because it's traditional we have to continue to do it. If that was the case, we'd still have bear-baiting and be sending small children up chimneys.'

But last night, pro-hunting MPs were furious with the Blue Foxes' claims and called on Mr Cameron to honour his pledge to hold the ballot.

In a surprise addition to the Coalition agreement last summer, the Government promised to stage a vote on whether to repeal the ban on hunting with dogs introduced by Labour in 2004.

The move came after Mr Cameron, a self-confessed 'country boy' who grew up fishing and shooting rabbits, said the ban was a 'mistake' and needed to be reversed.

Since then, No 10 has indicated that the free vote - whereby MPs vote according to their conscience rather than according to an official line set by their party - would be put off until next year at the earliest.

But last week, anti-hunting MPs insisted the idea of the Commons revisiting the hunt ban was doomed because, with 20 Tories openly opposed to it, the Prime Minister would never win the vote against overwhelming opposition from his Lib Dem Coalition partners and Labour MPs...

Read the full report on the Daily Mail website:

21. Register your opposition to "Toro de la Vega" barbarity

Source: International Movement Against Bullfights -

On Tuesday, September 13th in the Spanish city of Tordesillas, a bull will be chased by a mob of heartless locals who will persecute the animal and spear it to death. Please register your opposition to this appalling Toro de la Vega event.

Contact the City Hall of Tordesillas who shamefully allow it to take place.

Please send a protest letter to:,,,,,,

Sample Letter

Muy Sres. Nuestros,

He tenido constancia de la celebracion que se lleva a cabo en Tordesillas durante la primera quincena de septiembre, denominada Toro de Vega, en la que centenares de personas a pie y a caballo acosan a un toro hasta la muerte a lanzazos.

Me pongo en contacto con ustedes para manifestarles el desagrado que este hecho nos provoca a mi, a mis conocidos y amigos, como miembros de una sociedad sensible hacia el maltrato y el sufrimiento animal.

En nuestro país disponemos de legislacion en materia de proteccion animal que harian imposible que se dieran este tipo de celebraciones, ya que no solo perjudican a los animales sino que degradan la imagen de la sociedad que los permite.

Es por ello que les solicito reconsideren la celebracion de dicho festejo.

Mientras se siga celebrando, dare a conocer a los turistas las practicas del municipio de Tordesillas como parte de la verguenza que supone para Europa que se sigan manteniendo tan sanguinarias tradiciones, propias de otros siglos.



22. Bulls banned as performing animals in India

Source: CAS International -

The Ministry of Environment and Forest in India has decided to add bulls to a list of animals which may not be trained or used in performances. Bears, monkeys, tigers, panthers and lions are among the animals already on the list.

Welcoming the development, Dr Chinny Krishna, chairman of Federation of Indian Animal Protection Organisations, stated: "Hundreds of bulls are tortured in barbaric events like Jallikattu and Rekla races in south India and the Dhirio of Goa. With this notification, bulls are to be considered performing animals for the purpose of such events".

Please send an email of thanks to the Minister responsible for getting this protection for bulls - Mr. Jairam Ramesh. Email:

23. Opinion Poll: Please vote NO

Source: International Movement Against Bullfights"

Before being closed for renovations, the Roman amphitheatre in Frejus, France hosted bullfighting events. The local mayor has insisted that after the renovations are complete, no more bullfights will take place there. However, bullfighting aficionados are calling for the return of their cruel bloodsport.

An online opinion poll is asking if bullfights should return to the amphitheatre?
("Les corridas doivent-elles reprendre apres les travaux aux arenes de Frejus?")

Please vote NON/NO at

24. Campaign Quotes

"Those who engage in hare coursing are cowards, sadists and scum. Those who support those who engage in hare coursing are also cowards, sadists and scum. Ultimately those who enjoy any form of cruelty to either animals or human beings are perverts of the worst kind. This applies equally to badger baiting, dog fighting, bull-fighting and stag-hunting." Reader comment on the Belfast Telegraph website. 2 August 2011

"It is surprising how many people leave their manners on the ground when they get on a horse. Please thank cars for slowing down, wave cars on when you see the Masters wave them on, and keep to the nearside if you hear the shout 'car please'. A smile and 'good morning' to people on foot will help to dispel the myth that everyone on horseback is a SNOB and too good to talk to people on foot." The South Union Foxhounds Newsletter, 1st November 2010

"With regard to the important subject of sport, two practices then much in vogue in Kilkenny may here be mentioned. It was the habit occasionally to dig foxes run to ground in large woodlands, and, after bagging them, to keep them for a few days, and in the event of two or three coverts being drawn blank, to turn one down in front of the pack." From Memoir Of The Kilkenny Hunt, 1897

"[Deer are] beautiful animals and they should be given the respect they deserve" Coillte's 'deer and game manager' Barry Coad after killing a defenceless female Sika deer. From The deer hunter, The Sunday Business Post, 20 February 2011

"Approach all injured animals with care and dispatch safely and humanely without risk of personal injury...Care must be taken when using knives...No stalker should display any carcass in a manner that may cause offence to other forest users. All stalkers must ensure that all viscera, and other body parts removed from the carcase are disposed of properly..." From Coillte's Deer Stalking code of practice.

"If it is safe to do so, all birds, which continue to fly after they have been hit by a shot, should be immediately shot again...All quarry species shot on Coillte lands must be retrieved without delay, humanely dispatched (if required) and removed from the lands on the cessation of hunting." from the Coillte Code of Practice - Game Shooting

25. Letters to Editors

Coursing Is Cruel
Evening Herald, August 30 2011

Sinn Fein's assertion that Northern Ireland's ban on hare coursing is an attack on the 'rural way of life' is an insult to the majority of countryside dwellers who abhor cruelty.

Coursing is a minority activity, with an ever-dwindling following, so it's hard to fathom why any political party would alienate a large proportion of the electorate by backing it.

Fine Gael's 2011 election manifesto promised to renew 'outdated animal welfare legislation' with 'greater cooperation across the island of Ireland on animal welfare issues'. They should start by banning coursing and affording hares protection from persecution.

Aideen Yourell
[Irish Council Against Blood Sports]

Coursing Is Cruel
Evening Herald, August 29th, 2011

Con Houlihan is not very consistent in his condemnation of cruelty. While declaring that anyone who shoots hares "will not be a hero in the sporting community" (Herald, August 17), he sees nothing wrong with defending coursing. Con should concede that unleashing greyhounds to chase defenceless hares is equally unheroic. It's the act of a bully.

Considering that hares are running for their lives in coursing, few will be convinced by Con's suggestion that they "take pleasure in playing with the greyhounds". On the contrary, they suffer stress and fear and the agony of mashed innards and broken bones when caught.

Philip Kiernan,
Irish Council Against Blood Sports

It's time Sinn Fein stopped backing hare coursing
Belfast Telegraph, 2 August 2011

I wonder if Sinn Fein will denounce the recent incidents of cruelty to rabbits at a public park in east Belfast? According to reports, trainers were seen feeding rabbits to their greyhounds in broad daylight at the venue.

I imagine it might be a difficult issue for the party at present, owing to its official policy, adopted at last year's ard fheis, of fully supporting live hare coursing. Blooding of greyhounds is a brutal practice, with the unfortunate rabbits serving as mere bait for the dogs.

But hares are also subjected to a terrifying ordeal when they are captured, crammed into little boxes and then confined in large open-air cages until the day they are used as bait. In spite of all the evidence of cruelty in hare coursing, Sinn Fein has not only committed itself to backing its legal status in the Republic, it also made an unsuccessful attempt to have the coursing ban lifted in Northern Ireland.

This, despite the fact that the majority of Sinn Fein TDs, councillors and MLAs have declared themselves to be personally opposed to it. With the Sinn Fein ard fheis due to be held in September, we hope delegates will act to rescind the shameful pro-hare coursing motion adopted last year.

Ireland, north and south, would be a better place without it.

John Fitzgerald
Campaign for the Abolition of Cruel Sports

Coillte's callous yes to hunters in our forests
Irish Independent, August 08 2011

Ireland's forestry board is set to sacrifice thousands of defenceless creatures in a callous bid to boost its profits.

Coillte is currently selling licences that will allow hunters to destroy life in forests all over the country. Not only will woodland wildlife be killed but also creatures that Coillte is inviting hunters to introduce into the forests to use as targets.

Coillte is owned by the Irish people and this contamination of profits with blood money is surely unacceptable to the merciful majority.

The deer, foxes and birds should be allowed to live free from persecution. Ironically, on its website, Coillte urges visitors to forests to "respect wildlife" and "avoid disturbing animals and birds".

Everyone who values life over death should urgently demand that Coillte practises what it preaches and keeps the hunters out.

Philip Kiernan
Irish Council Against Blood Sports

Hare coursing won't be missed
Belfast Telegraph, 18 August 2011

The Campaign for the Abolition of Cruel Sports welcomes the permanent ban on live hare coursing in Northern Ireland.

This represents both a proud day for the people of Northern Ireland and a much-needed boost to the magnificent wildlife heritage that all of us share on this island.

Sadly, the contrast could not be greater between this development and the decision last week of the Republic's arts minister, Jimmy Deenihan, to allow another season of this abhorrent cruelty to hares. In spite of muzzling greyhounds, hares continue to be mauled.

The Northern Ireland ban should especially concentrate the minds of delegates at the forthcoming Sinn Fein ard fheis, to be held in Belfast next month.

The party has been officially pro-hare coursing owing to a controversial motion passed at the 2010 ard fheis. We want it to reverse that position this year.

John Fitzgerald
Campaign for the Abolition of Cruel Sports

26. Petitions

Ban Blood Sports In Ireland Now
End Hare Coursing In Ireland
Ban Irish Fox Hunting
Lobby for the URGENT need for updated Animal Welfare Legislation in Ireland
Canada: End the Seal Hunt Now!
Stop the subsidies to A Coruna bullfights
Petition Against Faroese Pilot Whale Hunts
Save the Saddest Dolphins
End Dog Racing on Macau: Nearly 400 Dogs Killed Every Year
Demand Protection for the Danube Delta Wild Horses!
Stop Animal Experiments at The University of Plymouth
Petition against proposed badger cull in UK
Ban Larsen Traps & Multi Corvid Traps
Save the Turtles in Costa Rica!
Ban bullfighting groups from Facebook
Help stop the dog cruelty! (in China)

Please make a donation to ICABS

The Irish Council Against Blood Sports relies entirely on your generosity to continue our campaigning for an end to blood sport cruelty. Please become a supporter of our work today - click on Shop at for more details or send a cheque to ICABS, PO Box 88, Mullingar, Co Westmeath, Ireland. Thank you very much.

Keep hunters off your land

Make it known publicly that your land is off-limits to hunters. Place a preservation notice in your local newspaper now. Here is a sample notice that you may wish to use: "Take notice that all my lands at [Insert address(es) of land] are private and preserved day and night. All forms of hunting and shooting are strictly prohibited. Trespassers will be prosecuted. Signed [Insert name(s) of landowner]" For more information, click on Farmers at

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Footage of blood sport cruelty and the humane alternatives can be viewed on the ICABS Channel on Youtube - or by clicking on "Videos" at Please ask your local TD/Senator to view our videos and back a blood sports ban.

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