Parliamentary Questions and Answers
Question 277 - Answered on 16th January, 2014
Maureen O'Sullivan, TD (Dublin Central, Independent)
To ask the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine if the removal of a deer's antlers by sawing or other means constitutes a mutilation under Section 11(b) of the Animal Health and Welfare Act 2013; and if he will make a statement on the matter.
The Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Simon Coveney (Cork South-Central, Fine Gael):
Matters relating to prohibited operations and procedures for deer antlers will be regulated under Section 16 of the Animal Health and Welfare Act 2013.
Regulations are currently being prepared under Section 16 of the Act to set down those procedures to be permitted under this Section. It is my intention under these regulations to permit the removal of the non-sensitive part of the antlers of farmed deer (unless the antlers are in live velvet) by a veterinary practitioner. It will be an offence to carry out a procedure interfering with sensitive tissue on an animal in contravention of these regulations, which will replace Statutory Instrument 267 of 1994 (Welfare of Deer Regulations).