The UK’s Hare Preservation Trust has joined calls on Minister Heather Humphreys to stop licensing cruel hare coursing.
In a letter to the Minister this month, the Trust’s John Rimington BSc stated: “I would like to draw your attention to the true facts relating to hare coursing in Ireland, something those people who engage in this destructive activity desperately do not want you to hear. Although the dogs wear muzzles, this does not prevent the quarry hares from suffering crippling and sometimes fatal injuries caused by the vigorous buffeting, including being tossed into the air, which the hare endures when cornered by the pursuing dogs. Broken bones and worse are inflicted by the aggressive dogs which are still trying to destroy the hare in spite of being handicapped by their muzzles.”
He went on to tell Minister Humphreys that injured hares have “no chance of being able to survive in the wild, even if subsequently set free by the event organisers” and that post-release hare deaths are not included in coursing mortality statistics.
Also highlighted was the threat to hares from “stress myopathy”. “Even if a hare appears to have escaped uninjured from the coursing event it may well subsequently die within hours or days in the wild from the little known effects of stress myopathy,” he stated. “The excessive adrenaline exertion entailed in trying to evade the relentless dogs (feared predators as far as the hare is concerned) forces lactic acid into the hare’s bloodstream causing a breakdown of body tissues, especially muscles, releasing chemicals which damage kidneys and, critically, the heart muscle. It then becomes an unpleasant and sometimes lingering death for the hare.”
“I hope that these sobering facts – and not the misleading propaganda emanating from the coursing lobby – will impress upon you that it is vital for the future survival prospects of the Irish hare that coursing is outlawed in Ireland, as it has been in the UK,” Mr Rimington added.
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Tel: +353 (0)1-631 3802 or (01) 631 3800 (Heather Humphreys)
Tel: +353 (0)1-6194020 (Enda Kenny)
Tel: +353 (0)1-607 2000 (Michael Creed)
Contact all your local TDs now. Demand that they urgently push for a ban on hare coursing and all bloodsports.
Visit the Oireachtas website for names of TDs and their email addresses http://www.oireachtas.ie/members-hist/default.asp?housetype=0&HouseNum=32&disp=mem
Write to your TDs at: Dail Eireann, Leinster House, Kildare Street, Dublin 2. Tel: 01-618 3000 or 1890 337 889.