Parliamentary Questions and Answers
Question 45 - Answered on 14th November, 2007
Shane McEntee: To ask the Minister for the Environment, Heritage and Local Government if he has sufficient information to make a decision on the granting of a stag hunting license to a hunt (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter.
Question 60 - Answered on 14th November, 2007
Leo Varadkar: To ask the Minister for the Environment, Heritage and Local Government if he has decided to grant a licence for a hunt (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter.
Ref No: 28674/07 and 27445/07. Oral reply.
Minister for the Environment, Heritage and Local Government (Mr. Gormley): I proposed to take Question Nos. 45 and 60 together. Section 26(1) of the Wildlife Act 1976 provides that I may grant to the master or other person in charge of a pack of stag hounds, a licence authorising the hunting of deer by that pack, during such period or periods as is or are specified in the licence.
The Ward Union Hunt applied to my Department for a hunting licence for the 2007/2008 season. In my consideration of the licence application I raised a number of issues of serious concern with the Ward Union Hunt including in relation to animal welfare, conservation and protection of stags generally and compliance with previous licence conditions. Meetings were held between officials of my Department and representatives of the Ward Union Hunt and correspondence was exchanged with the Hunt in order to convey my serious concerns to the Hunt and provide the Hunt with an opportunity to address these concerns.
I have given careful consideration to the responses provided by the Ward Union Hunt. There are however some outstanding issues that need to be resolved and I may require further information before coming to a definitive conclusion.
I appreciate that this is a difficult issue for all concerned and I can assure Deputies that the matter is receiving my careful and urgent consideration.