Parliamentary Questions and Answers
Question 232 - Answered on 6th November, 2008
To ask the Minister for the Environment, Heritage and Local Government the number of hares killed or which subsequently died at coursing meetings (details supplied) during October and November 2008; and if this represents an increase on the average at these meetings.
Written reply. Ref No: 39080/08
Minister for the Environment, Heritage and Local Government (Mr. Gormley):
Hare coursing in the State is administered by the Irish Coursing Club, set up under the Greyhound Industry Act, 1958. Statutory responsibility for the Act is a matter for the Minister for Arts, Sport and Tourism. My responsibilities under the Wildlife Acts relate to the conservation of populations of certain protected species including hares. My Department recently issued a licence under the Wildlife Acts to the Irish Coursing Club (ICC) allowing its affiliated clubs to net hares for the purpose of hare coursing for the 2008/2009 season, subject to certain conditions. One of these conditions is that the ICC must report on each hare coursing meeting held.
In relation to the 19 hare coursing meetings referred to in the question, my Department has received reports on 14 of these meetings to date. The reports for the meetings scheduled to take place on 1 and 2 November 2008 have not yet been received. The number of hares killed or which subsequently died at the meetings reported upon was 22 compared to 27 and at the equivalent meetings held last year.