Parliamentary Questions and Answers

Question 546 - Answered on 19 May 2015

Ruth Coppinger, TD (Dublin West, Socialist Party)

To ask the Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht the reason she intervened in the case of two hare coursing clubs (details supplied), and did not apply any sanctions, following alleged breaches of conditions of their licences.

Heather Humphreys (Cavan-Monaghan, Fine Gael)

Licences were issued by my Department in August 2014, under the Wildlife Acts, to the Irish Coursing Club on behalf of their affiliated clubs to facilitate the tagging and capturing of hares for the purpose of hare coursing for the 2014/15 coursing season.

Where resources allow, officials of my Department attend coursing meetings, on a spot-check basis, to monitor compliance with conditions on the licences granted by my Department. Veterinary officials from the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine also attend some meetings on an annual basis.

The reports of officials from my Department who attended the two coursing meetings in question in September and October 2013 indicated that there was a lack of co-operation with them in the course of their duties, an issue which I take very seriously.

Following engagement with the clubs in question and the Irish Coursing Club, the body that oversees individual coursing clubs, written assurances were provided to my Department that both clubs would fully co-operate with officials of the Department at all times and that they would adhere to all licence conditions. On the basis of these assurances, I decided not to impose sanctions against the clubs on this occasion. At the same time, both clubs were issued with written warnings that any further transgressions, especially relating to lack of co-operation with officials of my Department, would result in my Department imposing future sanctions against the clubs.

Officials from my Department monitored the meetings of both clubs during the 2014/15 coursing season. The Conservation Rangers who attended the meetings reported that there was full co-operation forthcoming.

Videos: Ireland's cruel hare coursing

Videos: Drag coursing, the humane alternative to hare coursing


Express your support for a ban on coursing. Sign and share petitions

Stop Licensing Cruel Hare Coursing
Save Irish hares from cruel coursing
Ban horrific hare coursing cruelty in Ireland
Stop sponsoring hare coursing in Ireland

Urge Minister Heather Humphreys to show compassion for the persecuted Irish Hare and stop licensing hare coursing.

Email "Minister Humphreys - Stop licensing cruel hare coursing" to Heather.Humphreys@oireachtas.ie
Tel: (01) 631 3802 or (01) 631 3800
Leave a comment on Facebook - https://www.facebook.com/heather.humphreysfg
Tweet to Heather Humphreys: @HHumphreysFG

(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 Humphreys,

I am one of the majority who want hare coursing outlawed. I am writing to urge you to stop licensing this cruel activity.

In coursing, hares suffer 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. Every season, hare injuries and deaths are documented.

I ask you to please act on the wishes of the majority, show compassion and stop licensing hare coursing.

Thank you.

Yours sincerely,


Appeal to the Minister for Agriculture

Please appeal to the Minister for Agriculture to remove an exemption for hare coursing from the Animal Health and Welfare Act.

Simon Coveney, TD
Minister for Agriculture
Agriculture House,
Kildare Street, Dublin 2.

Email: Simon.Coveney@oireachtas.ie
Tel: 01-607 2884 or LoCall 1890-200510.
Fax: 01-661 1013.

Urgently contact An Taoiseach Enda Kenny and ask him to back a ban on hare coursing.

An Taoiseach, Enda Kenny
Department of the Taoiseach,
Government Buildings,
Upper Merrion Street,
Dublin 2
Telephone: 01-6194020
Fax: 01-6764048
Email: taoiseach@taoiseach.gov.ie

Contact all your local TDs now. Demand that they urgently push for a ban on hare coursing and all bloodsports. Tell them you are one of the majority who want coursing banned. Remind them that coursing is already illegal in Northern Ireland, Scotland, England and Wales. Urge them to respect the wishes of the majority of the electorate and back a ban.

Find out their contact details
Please also arrange a meeting with your TDs at their local clinics.

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