Hunting News

Irish News

HAI Punchestown Day, Tuesday April 23rd 2013

HAI Punchestown day was again a great success with a huge turnout.
This year Tuesday was the premier day with racing enthusiasts thrilled to se Sprinter Sacre booking his place in the winners enclosure in next years Gold Cup
The day was kicked off with a Horse Sport Ireland parade in the parade ring before the first race. Huntng was represented by Louth Huntsman, Alan Reilly and standard bearer HAIChairman Philip Donnelly.
During racing The Louth Foxhounds and the Edenderry Harriers were again in action and paraded on the straight between races.
To see further Punchestown photos visit
HAI Affiliate to Horse Sport Ireland
The Hunting Association of Ireland affiliates to Horse Sport Ireland
Horse Sport Ireland has confirmed that the Hunting Association of Ireland (HAI) has been accepted as an Affiliate body to Horse Sport Ireland.
Horse Sport Ireland Chairman Joe Walsh said:
“Hunting is a hugely significant aspect of the Sport Horse Sector and it is a very important market for Irish-bred horses,” he said.
Last year over 6,000 horses hunted in Ireland and Horse Sport Ireland is keen to work with the HAI to record more breeding details for these horses.
“With our new online database ‘CapallOir’ now in place we are keen to record details of our hunting horses. We believe that this information would be of interest to prospective purchasers of Irish horses and would add value to our mare herd,” he said.
David Lalor of the Hunting Association of Ireland said that the organisation was pleased to affiliate to Horse Sport Ireland.
“It is vital for hunting to be at the heart of the Sport Horse Sector and we will be attending our first meeting of the HSI Sport Sub Board next Monday in Horse Sport Ireland and we are looking forward to playing our part in the sector,” he said.

CAI attended the UUP party conference in Belfast over the weekend.  There was a good attendance and Jenny and David met with many politicians, trying to ensure we all receive continued support for country sports from the UUP.



The AGM of the Irish Masters of Harriers Association took place on Sat 10th September in the Kilcornan Community Hall, Co Limerick. Special Guest Speaker was Mr Jim Murphy, recent Chairman of the HAI and was chairman of the Irish Foot-Harriers for many years. 

He was also Director of Hunting with Hounds with FACEIreland. This years AGM was hosted by the Stonehall Harriers Hunt Club as part of their centenary celebrations. The Stonehall Harriers have always enjoyed a special place in the loyalty and affection of Shannonsiders by their conduct and contributions to the local community.

Outgoing IMHA President Mr Hugh O’Donovan, Upton Harriers, having served three years, welcomed the delegates and wished the meeting well. He raised a wide range of issues
but said that that disunity and infighting within hunts and between hunts was our biggest concern. He said we should do more to bring all hunts under the recognised associations and that delegates should air their opinion and views in an open and cordial way.
Austin Fitzpatrick, Drumlin Hounds, was the unanimous choice for Chairman. He hoped he would justify the faith the meeting placed in him and said it was very encouraging to see such a large crowd. He thanked the delegates for coming, some travelling long distances and looked forward to everybody making their contribution. He said we still faced difficult times ahead in defending hunting. He paid tribute to his fellow Officers and the committee members for the great work done on behalf of hunting, and in particular the past year when challenges were at their greatest.
David Burke, Grallagh Harriers was elected Vice-Chairman. Tom Geary, Killeagh Harriers, was re-elected Hon Secretary. Shane Croke, Nore Vale Harriers, was re-elected Assistant Secretary. Mr Dick Doocey, Killeagh Harriers, is to be the President for the coming year. Dick is the longest serving delegate to the IMHA, not having missed an AGM since the early seventies. Two new nembers were added to the Executive Committee, Mr Liam Fitzsimmons, Stonehall Harriers and Mr Killian Farrell, Woodstown Harriers. Each will serve three years.
The IMHA Committee for 2011/2012Season is Tony Marsh, East Clare Harriers; David Wilkinson, Tara Harriers; Con Duggan, Killeady Hunt; Tom Geary, Killeagh Harriers; Donal Boyle, Premier Harriers; Brian Sheridan, Southwest Meath Harriers; Shane Croke, Nore Vale Harriers; Hugh O’ Donovan, Upton Harriers; John Walshe, Limerick Harriers; John Horan, County Clare Hunt; Austin Fitzpatrick, Drumlin Hounds; Ms Ann Marie Reyonlds, Co Longford Harriers; David Burke, Grallagh Harriers; Liam Fitzsimmons, Stonehall Harriers and Mr Killian Farrell, Woodstown Harriers. One place was reserved for a nominee from the Hunting Association of Northern Ireland.


French News

Cheverny: A Château  
That's Gone to the Dogs

Barking dogs remind visitors that the viscount still loves to hunt. The kennel (200 yards in front of the château, look for Chenil signs) is especially interesting at dinnertime, when the 70 hounds are fed.

The dogs — half English foxhound and half French Poitou — are bred to have big feet and bigger stamina. They're fed once a day and the feeding (la soupe des chiens) is a fun spectacle that shows off their strict training. Before chow time, the hungry hounds fill the little kennel rooftop and watch the trainer bring in troughs stacked with delectable raw meat. He opens the gate, and they gather enthusiastically around the food and yelp hysterically. Only when the trainer says to eat can they dig in. You can see the dogs at any time, but the feeding show is fun to plan for. The adjacent trophy room is stuffed with more than a thousand antlers and the heads of five wild boar.Pick up the English self-guided tour brochure — which describes the interior beautifully — inside the château, not where you buy your ticket. The town of Cheverny, in the Loire Valley, is easy to reach from Blois by excursion bus.

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U.K News

David Cameron set to delay free vote on lifting hunting ban.

David Cameron is likely to postpone a free vote on lifting the ban on hunting with dogs indefinitely in the face of overwhelming evidence that the ban would be retained if MPs did vote, and that a vote might possibly tighten the current law.

A free vote will also irritate Liberal Democrats, with 42 of the 57 Liberal Democrats MPs opposed to lifting a ban, including the party leader, Nick Clegg. A commitment to a free vote is in the coalition agreement but is not seen as a priority given bigger issues relating to the economy and public services. A Downing Street source said a vote would also look like a skewed sense of priorities, and remind some voters that the coalition can be seriously divided on social issues. Cameron, a self-confessed "shire Tory", has said he is a country man at heart and favours hunting, but he recognises it is a highly divisive issue and would play to negative stereotypes around his party. Coalition members are aware that a free vote, as Tony Blair discovered, can swallow a huge amount of parliamentary time and energy. The 2004 Hunting Act convulsed the second term of the Labour government and exasperated Blair, leading him to admit in his autobiography the ban was a mistake based on ignorance. The farming minister, James Paice, confirmed on Friday that lifting the ban was not a legislative priority for him, or for the department of environment, food and rural affairs. A comprehensive survey of MPs conducted by the League against Cruel Sports last month showed any repeal of the Hunting Act would be defeated by 310 votes to 253, with 23 MPs undecided. A total of 42 Liberal Democrats MPs would oppose lifting the ban, leaving advocates of repeal heavily dependent on Conservatives. There are now 22 Conservative MPs who oppose repeal, including some new members. Five new Tory MPs, including Caroline Dinenage, Mike Weatherley and Tracey Crouch, backed a statement issued at the weekend saying that "this government has far more important things to do than spending time on bringing back cruelty to animals for sport". Some Tory MPs oppose lifting the ban because they believe the current legislative position allows many hunts, in practice, to continue to chase foxes and remain inside the law. It is likely that legislation would be promoted only if Cameron felt it necessary to re-engage an enthusiastic countryside vote ahead of a general election. But even then the issue is likely to alienate some centrist Tories. A survey by Ipsos-Mori for the League Against Cruel Sports released on Boxing Day showed that 76% of the British public think fox hunting should remain illegal, while 84% think stag and hare hunting should also remain illegal. Only one in six, 18%, think fox hunting should be legalised again, with only one in 10 thinking hare hunting and coursing should be made legal. Seven in 10 rural dwellers think fox hunting should not be legalised. Conservatives Against Fox Hunting, a recently formed campaign group, claims that two-thirds of Conservative supporters oppose any repeal. Louise Robertson, of the League Against Cruel Sports, said she was confident there is no public appetite for repealing the act. She said the league had polled every MP on the issue and it was "very firmly stacked against repeal". She said contrary to what the Countryside Alliance said, there had been 57 prosecutions for illegal hunting.She claimed that a large number of hunts were not hunting within the terms of the act and the number of prosecutions was increasing year on year. If the dogs were not controlled properly and chased and killed a fox, that was illegal. The Countryside Alliance has produced a poll of more than 1,000 people, carried out by ORB, showing two-thirds of people agree that the hunting ban and the time spent enforcing was not a good use of police resources. The Countryside Alliance's chief executive, Alice Barnard, said the act has "wasted thousands of hours of police time and millions of pounds of taxpayers' money". When repeal was debated, she said, the alliance was confident the country and parliament would support the arguments for ending the ban. Today was supposed to be the biggest day of the hunting calendar, but snow and ice made conditions for riders too dangerous in many areas and some of the 300 hunts scheduled to take place were cancelled.


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American News

About MFHA

 The Masters of Foxhounds Association of America was formed in 1907 and is the governing body of organized fox, coyote, other acceptable legal quarry and drag hunting in the United States and Canada.

The MFHA Foundation is a 501-C3 organization with a mission to provide education, information and solicit funds to secure the future of this sport. It is an umbrella organization which allows donors to give funds to either the Foundation or the Hunt Staff Benefit Foundation (HSBF). The MFHA’s main activities are: The promotion of the sport The publication of a Foxhound Stud Book The recognition of organized Hunts which have met its standards The recordation of countries and boundaries for organized hunting establishments The registration of Hunts as a preliminary step toward recognition The membership of Masters of Foxhounds and the participation of their hunts are voluntary, but once a Master has accepted membership and a Hunt has accepted Registration or Recognition, they must adhere to the rules and should adhere to the guidelines of the Association and pursue the sport according to the best possible customs and traditions. The Association is governed by a Board of Directors consisting of a President, two Vice Presidents, and a Secretary-Treasurer, Representatives from various Districts in the United States and Canada and one or more Directors at Large, who usually include the three past Presidents. An Executive Director is also known as the "Keeper of the Stud Book". The Officers and Directors are elected by the membership. 

Russian News

Traditional Russian hunting in the manner of the 19th century is re-enacted in the Moscow region. This weekend, Muscovites will have a unique chance to glimpse into the lives of past Russian noblemen in a large-scale hunt featuring more than one hundred horses.

 Russian organizers, who have arranged the two-day “Tsar’s hunting” event in the city of Mozhaysk, about 100 km west of Moscow, say the aim of the hunt is not to kill animals but to revive the atmosphere of the 19th century tradition. A total of 60 riders on horseback, dressed in traditional costumes and accompanied by packs of Borzois – the so-called “Russian Wolfhounds” – will take part in the weekend hunt. Organizers say the hunt is not just a thrilling experience but a serious test of each hunter’s readiness. Participants, including both amateur riders as well as experienced hunters, will have to race and gallop for several hours. Hunting with Borzois was a popular pastime for the Russian aristocracy in Tsarist Russia. It became particularly widespread in the 18th and 19th centuries after the reign of Empress Anna, Peter the Second and Empress Elizabeth. The Borzois were particularly favored by the Tsar and his entourage. The dogs could not be purchased, but only given as gifts by the emperors. Russian TV-presenter Viktoria Bonya says the hunt opens unknown depths of her soul. “For me this is a unique experience,” Bonya said. “All my life I was afraid of horses, it was a great fear – now, you see, my horse kisses me! It’s so nice to ride on her! And – the important thing is that we are just hunting but not killing any animals.” Russia Today 16 January, 2010

Disclaimer: The posting of this news article and videos is for information purposes only and do not constitute Royal Russia's endorsement of hunting for sport or entertainment.