Wednesday, 20 January 2021

Questions (249)

Jennifer Whitmore


249. Deputy Jennifer Whitmore asked the Minister for Housing, Local Government and Heritage if a club (details supplied) released all hares captured for the purposes of coursing as requested by him in October 2020; if the club currently has captured hares; the number of hares under the control of the club; if the club is required to release them due to the limitations on coursing under Covid-19 restrictions; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [2897/21]

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Written answers (Question to Housing)

My Department understands from the Irish Coursing Club (ICC) that all hares which had been held in captivity by clubs affiliated to the ICC were released back into the wild in November 2020 on foot of a request to the ICC to do so. I understand that some hares netted in late December may remain in captivity. The National Parks and Wildlife Service are currently monitoring that situation, more especially with due regard to the on-going legal action by the ICC, and I am, in that respect, unable to comment further at this juncture. However, I am closely monitoring the situation and will provide an update on the matter when appropriate.