Stop Abbeyfeale Coursing - Urgent Appeal to Ministers
23rd December 2003
The Irish Council Against Blood Sports (ICABS) is today calling on Ministers Martin Cullen and John O'Donoghue, both of whom have responsibility for the sick "sport" of hare coursing, to stop a coursing meeting going ahead at Abbeyfeale, Co Limerick this weekend.
ICABS was informed today that up to sixteen hares had been pinned down by muzzled dogs at so called "trials" held there recently. These trials are "practice sessions" where hares are chased up the fields by greyhounds tosupposedly get them used to the "experience". In January 2001, this club was "censured" by the Irish Coursing Club when they failed to halt a coursing meeting after eleven hares were pinned down by greyhounds. On that occasion, sports journalist and greyhound commentator, John Martin, wrote "what passed as a coursing meeting was a disgrace." He said that some hares "were barely moving beyond walking pace".
Given this club's appalling record, we call on Ministers Cullen who licences coursing clubs to net hares from the wild for this abuse, and John O'Donoghue, who oversees the "welfare" of what is an inherently and intrinsically barbaric activity, to, at the very least, stop Abbeyfeale from running this meeting.
We further call on the Irish Government to follow the example of the Northern Ireland authorities and ban hare coursing for good. It's about time in this the third year of the new millennium to rid ourselves of this shameful activity involving the brutal abuse by a minority of a beautiful and timid wild creature.
Take Action: Demand an end to hare coursing in Ireland
Phone/Fax/Email Minister Martin Cullen
Minister Martin Cullen
Tel: 1890-202021 (Locall) (Request to speak to Minister Cullen or his Secretary)
Dear Minister Cullen,
As one of the eighty per cent majority of Irish citizens who wish to see coursing banned in Ireland, I appeal to you to immediately intervene to call a halt to coursing activities.
As you may be aware, coursing in Northern Ireland will be banned for at least 12 months from January 19th, 2004. I call on you to revoke the licence issued by your Department to the Irish Coursing Club and to ensure that no further licences are issued in the future.
The licensing of coursing cruelty in Ireland has been condemned not only in Ireland but all over the world. Coursing represents a blemish on Ireland's international reputation. In this, the 21st Century, it is time for the Irish Government to replace this blood sport with the humane alternative of drag coursing.
Drag coursing sees greyhounds chasing a mechanical device known as a drag. The drag, comprising a piece of cloth or plastic, is rapidly dragged along by a wire cable and can be made to be as unpredictable as a hare and to provide challenging runs for the greyhounds. This is practised successfully in the United States, Australia and also by some clubs in the UK where a ban appears likely in the near future. There is no reason why Ireland should not follow this compassionate route and replace live hare coursing with drag coursing.
Thank you, Minister. I look forward to your positive reply.
Contact your local politicians
Eight in ten Irish people want to see coursing banned in Ireland. We desperately need to keep reminding the politicians about this enormous opposition to coursing and demanding that they work towards making it illegal in Ireland. Please write to all of your local politicians and ask them to support the campaign against coursing and other blood sports. Encourage your friends and family to contact them too. We need as much help with this campaign as possible. Thank you.
Write to your TD at:
Write to your Senator at:
For the names and contact details of politicians, please visit the Irish Government website at www.irlgov.ie.
Coursing Cruelty: Further Information
For more information on hare coursing cruelty in Ireland, please visit our updated Ban Hare Coursing website at www.banbloodsports.com/coursing.
The site includes details for the current season along with a photo gallery, video clips and petitions.
Please sign our Ban Blood Sports in Ireland petition.