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Social Democrats spokesperson for Climate Action and Biodiversity, Jennifer Whitmore TD, has welcomed confirmation that the Irish Coursing Club (ICC) is to immediately release all captured hares back into the wild.

Deputy Whitmore had raised concerns after the Minister for Housing, Local Government and Heritage, Darragh O’Brien TD, conceded recently that some hares may have been netted for coursing purposes in late December, despite the introduction of Level 5 measures.

Earlier this week, the Irish Coursing Club was unsuccessful in its bid to secure a High Court injunction to allow coursing to resume during the current restrictions.

Deputy Whitmore said:

“I had asked the Minister to order the immediate release of all captured hares in view of the fact that coursing meetings are not permitted to take place during Level 5 restrictions and in light of the welfare issues involved in keeping wild animals in captivity.

“I welcome confirmation from the Minister that the ICC has informed him that all captured wild hares are to be released immediately.”

January 29, 2021

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