Thursday, 15 July 2021

Ceisteanna (184)

Paul Murphy

Ceist:

184. Deputy Paul Murphy asked the Minister for Housing, Local Government and Heritage if he will introduce a ban on hare coursing. [38988/21]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Housing)

The control of live hare coursing, including the operation of individual coursing meetings and managing the use of hares for that activity, is carried out under the Greyhound Industry Act 1958, which is the responsibility of my colleague, the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine. My responsibility relates to the conservation status of the hare.

While the regulation of hare coursing is not under my statutory control, licences are required by the Irish Coursing Club under the terms of the Wildlife Acts on behalf of their affiliated clubs to facilitate the netting and tagging of hares for closed park meetings. The annual licence to capture and tag hares for the 2020/2021 coursing season was issued by my Department on 16 September last year. The licences granted by my Department in such instances include a range of conditions in relation to coursing hares which are designed to provide as much protection as possible to the conservation status of the hare.

My Department has received an application from the Irish Coursing Club for a licences to capture and tag hares for the forthcoming 2021/22 hare coursing season and a decision will be made on the application in due course.