Five years after the hunting ban, do you support or oppose hunting? (Poll now closed)

I support hunting
56% (6197 votes)
I oppose hunting
42% (4646 votes)
I don't know
1% (164 votes)
Total votes: 11007

Fox hunting

Mon, 28/12/2009 - 21:04

When are people going to realise that foxes are the killers. I live in the country and through my own knowledge they kill many poults (baby pheasants) reared for food in just 1 night. So people think twice about criticizing other peoples experience and true knowledge on what happens, without listening to bogus nonsense.

British Public

Mon, 03/08/2009 - 11:25

The British public do not support killing for sport, nor do they support culling dogs because they are old.
I guess I should apologise for complaining about joy riders, fly tippers, car tax dodgers, as after all it is only "our way of life" you do not understand and we will continue until the law is repealed.

Countryfile Magazine Poll on Hunting

Tue, 21/07/2009 - 12:19

It is a shame that this poll is irrelevent when the Countrycide Alliance use their telephone tree to bias the results. I would like to see Countryfile Magazine carry out a poll that would be statistically reliable.

Then again... as for the Countrycide Alliance (a vowel too many). It is a sad indictment of their mentality that they can't rely on producing valid ecological, scientific, moral and ethical arguments to win their polls and instead have to resort to the CHEATING

Interesting point but how

Tue, 21/07/2009 - 20:12

Interesting point but how many surveys do the LACS carry out amongst their members and publish the results as "facts".

The only way to get a representative "opinion" of hunting is through an open vote in the commons. Lets not start throwing about allegations of "Tory boys" keeping their chums in a sport, the legislation would never have been enacted if it hadn't been for partisan "whipped" voting in the commons.

Nice to see you have resorted to accusations of cheating, first sign that you are struggling to comprehend a balanced and informed argument.

Fox hunting is a blood sport

Mon, 20/07/2009 - 21:20

Fox hunting is a blood sport and im sure we can understand why alot of you antis oppose it. you think were monsters cause we enjoy blood sports. i dont deny that i enjoy blood sports, Its the way ive been brought up though, hunting is part of my familys heritage and who are you to oppose it, in the countryside fox's will be culled not just because we enjoy it because we need to conserve other species and our countryside. If we cant hunt them we have other methods of culling them wether it be through a snare or a shotgun they will still be culled to maintain the conservational balance. Fox's are a ruthless killer they do it for fun. at the end of the day you need to get your priorities straight ever tucked into a nice fast food dinner processed chicken from battery hens no thanks ive got venison to fill me. atleast the fox has had a life before its killed.

Hunting with dogs...

Mon, 20/07/2009 - 16:52

This is not meant to discredit or disrespect anybody's belief or opinion, only to ask you "Do you really know all the facts?"

Lets not forget that the Hunting Act wasn't just about hunting with large packs of dogs and scarlet clad riders on horses. The hunting act also prohibited the use of "long dogs" (ie lurchers and greyhounds) which has removed an extremely useful tool from the pest controllers armoury.

The misconception that hunting with dogs is all about hoorays on horses just goes to show that most people's opinion of hunting is based upon the propaganda circulated by misinformed and prejudiced individuals and groups.

Lets not forget that a lot of "animal rights" groups are on terrorist watch lists because they are the nice kind of people who send firebombs to the children of individuals they oppose.

Do your own research before adopting the opinions of the ignorant.

Hunting with dogs

Sun, 28/03/2010 - 00:18

After 40 years in the field I think I know a lot more than most so-called hunters know about their so-called 'sport'. (Hang on, isn't that supposed to be about two opposing equal forces?) Those on horseback used to be 'gentlemen' (and gentlewomen). Not so now, they're definately all oafs. Not a bit of breeding between them. (Just read their blogs.) There is a history to hunting that has nothing, absolutely nothing, to do with control. This is just a modern excuse, just to salve their consciousnesses. Terrorism? Now whose opinion is based on propaganda?

The man next door.

Tue, 21/07/2009 - 07:13

Well said Tug. You have eloquently put what i have been twittering on about for years.
If the had public realised this ban actually effected themselves and their neighbours even more than the organised fox/hare hunts then i dont think the ban would have even gone through. The CA did a big mistake ignoring the plight of the man next door with his lurcher and whippet and by not featuring it in their campaign lost many votes. There are many more individuals with long dogs and terriers hunting than there are people in organised hunts.
Remember people if your dog even just chases a rat whilst out on a walk, you have technically broken the law, that is how ludicrous this law is.

if your dog even just chases a rat whilst out on a walk,

Tue, 21/07/2009 - 10:21

It is still perfectly legal to hunt rats and rabbits with dogs, but not hares or foxes.

It just goes to show that the legislation is purely an exercise in vote winning and doesn't have animal welfare as it's key objective.

The minute that nuLabour or the animal rights activists start looking at legislation that prohibits Halal slaughter (unstunned animals having their throats cut and bleeding to death in the name of religion) then will I truly believe that they are interested in animal welfare not just points scoring.

legal to hunt rats and rabbits

Wed, 22/07/2009 - 12:37

Yes Tug but only on permissioned land....most people walk their dogs in common places and technically would be breaking the law ;-)

Again, my thoughts exactly re; Halal/scoring points.

Of course dogs should be on

Wed, 22/07/2009 - 13:17

Of course dogs should be on the lead or under close control if it's public/common land anyway, not that the townies understand that either but I digress...

The huntng ban

Fri, 17/07/2009 - 11:36

I wish people who go hunting would just be honest and say why they really like to go kill wild animals

All the rubbish which is used to defend the unnatural practice of training a pack of hounds to chase a solitary dog species such as the red fox just doesnt hold any weight as to why people should carry on with their bizarre activities.

I want to know if hunts are still allowed to stop up badger sets and other escape routes which the fox would normally have had prior to the hunt turning up. Hunters block escape routes to try and make sure that a fox is holed up above ground so that they can get a chase.

Now that hunting foxes and other wild animals with hounds is illegal surely the hunters no longer need to stop up badger sets etc......

If this is still being undertaken then the law should be enforced

Its strange that the police have state dthey wont enforce the law or there isnt enough officers to police hunts - yet during the 1990's when hunt sabotuers were outlawed there were police units left right and centre protecting the hunts -

Its time the hunters got down the job centre and got proper jobs!


Its time who got down the job centre and got proper jobs?

Tue, 21/07/2009 - 18:26

Funny, I thought it was the sabs who would benefit from being gainfully employed. Ironic thing is that the tax revenue that comes from all country pursuits, not just hunting, pays the giro's and housing benefit for the majority of "hunt sabs/monitors" who would have a lot less free time on their hands if they went out and got a job.

For many hunters it is a hobby or pastime (with the exception of the hunt staff) and many of them do have "proper jobs".

To answer your point about police presence, the police officers were there to prevent a breach of the peace and aggravated trespass (entering land as a trespasser to intimidate, threaten or obstruct a lawful activity). Monitoring a legal activity on the remote chance that somebody might commit an offence under an near-impossible to enforce piece of legislation is hardly a priority when there are kids stabbing each other, muggings, burglaries, domestic abuse, rapes and murders going on elsewhere. Try and get your priorities right.

Just to summarise hunting was legal back then, sabbing wasn't. Hunting continues to be legal in a modified form under the act and it will continue to be fully legal come the change in Government that this country that is on it's knees so badly needs.


Wed, 15/07/2009 - 00:09

There are times when hunting is a necessary part of life for food . But this type of hunting along with trophy hunting just sickens me . I would never sit by and watch these hunts take place . I would probably end up in prison because of my actions . This is no sport .

Hunting should be consigned to the history books

Tue, 14/07/2009 - 15:19

I absolutely oppose hunting, which is a barbaric amusement not a sport.

In England and Wales it is an offence to hunt a wild mammal (regardless of whether it lives in the wild, is captive born or tamed) with dogs. The Hunting Act 2004 says that no animal has to be killed for the law to be broken; the pursuit is enough to constitute an offence.

Hunting with dogs is illegal unless it falls under the exempt hunting categories. These exemptions include the use of two dogs to stalk and flush an animal out of cover to guns, or the use of a terrier to flush a fox from underground to protect gamebirds.

The hunting community claims that these exemptions constitute 'loopholes', but in reality very tightly drawn conditions have to be met to be able to claim that the hunting of a fox with dogs has been carried out within the law. The exemptions do not allow chasing or killing with dogs.

Hunting should be consigned to the history books along with bear baiting etc.


Not all mammals

Thu, 23/07/2009 - 06:23

Not all mammals are protected, it's still fine to hunt and kill rabbits with lurchers and the same for rats with terriers so tell me that the Hunting Act is a genuine piece of welfare legislation as opposed to a "vote winner".

75% of the British public oppose hunting and that's a fact!

Thu, 09/07/2009 - 14:36

Hunting is not a necessary form of predator or population control, I believe it is wrong that wild animals are subjected to terror and pain for the sake of so-called 'sport'. It's reported that 75% of the British public don't want to see a return to this cruel and barbaric pastime.

Although the Hunting Act 2004 outlaws the hunting of several species of wild mammal with a pack of hounds, some hunts won't comply with the law, while many claim that they are trail hunting or have 'accidentally' pursued live animals.

It isn't just wildlife that is affected by hunting, 'hunt havoc' occurs when hunts lose control of their hounds. Such episodes have lead to road traffic accidents, trespassing, and savage attacks on livestock and pets.


Statistical licence

Tue, 21/07/2009 - 18:26

I think the correct statement is "75% of those surveyed" don't want a return to hunting. To quote Mark Twain: "Lies, damn lies and statistics"

Facing facts

Wed, 08/07/2009 - 11:24
Lis Key

I used to go foxhunting until I faced up to the fact that we were chasing and killing a sentient animal purely for the fun of it - literally for the thrill of the chase. And the longer that chase lasted, the more we enjoyed it. Not any more. Deriving pleasure from hunting any animal - and deliberately prolonging the hunt to increase the enjoyment - is indefensible. Foxes, hares and deer are no different to any other animal and deserve always to be treated humanely and compassionately.

The argument against hunting with dogs has been won. It's time the hunters admitted they were only in it for the fun - and found other things to do with their time: I did.

narrow minded

Thu, 23/07/2009 - 06:25

Again, you seem to view the Hunting Act as a piece of legislation that affects only the organised mounted hunts. It also prevents the use of lurchers to run down and catch foxes on open fields which is never a long chase due to the physique and stamina levels of long dogs.

Very fast sprint over short to medium range.

Another narrow minded opinion based on the propaganda circulated by the anti-establishment "welfare" organisations.


Wed, 08/07/2009 - 10:21

I live in the countryside and work in it. I have witnessed many hunts and been stopped from working by huntsman. I have seen the treatment of their dogs and horses which were not good.
I feel it is an out dated practice and our countryside should be managed in a more sympathetic and humane way now. We all know better. I work alongside vets believe me animals suffer pain and fear, I see the results of cruelty every day and trapping of animals and pets is also a big issue now causing some horrible injuries and deaths. Is this really a country of animal lovers or does it depend on the animal?
Most people watch wildlife programmes and love to watch foxes and badgers being filmed, how can we then allow barbaric slaughter of these creatures and say and do nothing. They are part of our countries wildlife and should be proud of it and protect it. Farming and any practices undertaken in the countryside should work alongside it not against it. We may own the land but we do not own the creatures on it.
Regards Julie Eames


Wed, 08/07/2009 - 09:31

Not again.
All the tired outpourings about one bite to the back of the neck, the fox doesn't feel pain, it laughs at the dogs before they attack, blah blah blah. Poppycock! Chasing foxes with dogs is cruel and unnecessary. Anyone with half a brain knows that Nature looks after itself. There is no need to 'control' the fox population, because it does that itself. Predators, because that is what they are, not vermin - another myth, only breed to the available food supply. This has been shown and proven across the World. Or perhaps Great Britain is different? These rules do not apply here?
It is a shame on this alleged civilised society that such an act as hunting with hounds is even considered as a pasttime. I am not a vegetarian, I am not a 'towny' - I have lived in rural Essex, then rural Devon since I was fourteen years old. I will not be voting for Labour at the next election, but as Mr Cameron is insistent on giving hunting time in the commons again, I will not be voting for him either. This is the only reason that I wont be voting for him - are you listening, whips?
In the latest poll, seventy per cent of rural Britons do not believe that hunting with hounds should be legalised. So do we expect the next Tory government to do all it's business this way? Vested interests, disobeying the will of the people?
What was that about cleaning up politics...?

70% of rural Britons?

Tue, 21/07/2009 - 18:27

Correction: 70% of rural Britons who REPLIED do not believe that hunting should be legalised.

I'd like to see the source of those results (they were 75% further up the page incidentally). Unless they are from an impartial organisation with neutral questions then the results are more lies. "Are you for or against hunting with dogs?" is a hell of a different question to "Hunting with dogs is barbaric and the act shouldn't be repealed, do you agree?"

Do they count the non-returns or the people who steered away from the surveyor? The opinions of people who don't reply or bin the survey don't get counted, these people are usually farmers and proper country folk who are never in to answer the door or whose cottages and houses are that far out the way that canvassers don't get to them. They don't open junk mail and very rarely post anything that isn't essential as they don't have the time to sit around filling out surveys.

Interesting fact, recent research has concluded that 100% of respondents liked filling out surveys and questionnaires...

hunting support result

Mon, 06/07/2009 - 22:27

I cannot believe this result. What sort of person enjoys and celebrates killing anything?


Sun, 05/07/2009 - 19:29

There is only one reason why hunting is still going on in this country, despite the attempt to ban it, and that has nothing to do with the minority of people from all walks of life who support it but because it is a pastime supported by the richest and most powerful in the land and it has links with other equestrian activities such as racing and jumping and those activities are big business.
All talk of of pest control is an irrelevance. Foxes were shipped into this country many years ago when foxes were getting scarce and there were no foxes at all on the Isle of Wight till the hunters took them there for their sport.
Now the leaders of the conservative party want to repeal the law to give absolute freedom to their hunting cronies to torment and terrorise foxes, deer, hare and mink in the name of country sports. The majority of the public want hunting banned and only a minority of the conservative party want to see hunting made legal again so what do David Cameron and friends think they are playing at? If hunting is so important to these upper echelons of society we really should be looking deeper into this issue. You can be sure that if it was just Joe Bloggs and his terriers they would have been banned long ago like badger baiting was.

Hunting is not the answer and not a sport!

Fri, 05/06/2009 - 16:31

Firstly, I wouldn't consider a fox a pest but that is for different debate. When you look at who is in the wrong it has to be the farmers - sheep aren't natural to Britain, the fox is.

Secondly, to say that hunting is the quickest method to kill a fox is extremely wrong. I have been out with the League Against Cruel Sports to observe hunts before the ban was in place and chasing a fox could last for hours including having dogs sent into their den to be dug out and chased again. Not quick and highly stressful. Finally the exhausted fox is killed by dogs. Dogs do not kill quickly. Cats kill by a bite to the windpipe and instantly kill the animal but dogs are much less efficient at killing prey and do just rip it apart.

Thirdly, The hunting community often contradict themselves by saying they don't kill many foxes and it's just for fun/a ride out. So if few foxes are killed then it's not very effective as pest control! And it's not a sport becuase one side is very disadvantaged especially with the presence of terrier men. Why not go drag hunting or just enjoy the countryside?

Finally, I have grown up in a very rural area in Lancashire but now I've moved to a city. And guess what? I've seen many foxes in London streets and never in fact saw a fox in Lancashire that wasn't being chased! It seems city people have more rights to call a fox a pest. So the city/rural arguement is completely flawed.

Cats kill by a bite to the windpipe and instantly kill

Tue, 21/07/2009 - 20:16

Have you ever heard the saying "It is better to say nothing and be presumed a fool than to open your mouth and prove it"?

BIG CATS like lions, tigers etc will kill with a single bite. Domestic cats will play with small birds, rodents, baby rabits, frogs and similar small animals until they die of a heart attack or blood loss.

With regards to urban foxes, did you know that if one is injured the RSPCA will nurse sit back to health and then release it in the countryside. Unfortunately urban foxes rely on scraps and scavenging for food and have no real concept of hunting for themselves. Lacking the guile and cunning of their rural cousins many will starve to death.

As I have said above, hunting with dogs wasn't just about mounted hunts. Dog men with terriers and lurchers used to carry out efficient controls and now cannot.

The reason you will see more foxes in an urban setting is because they are more confident, less wary of humans and more likely to come near houses to scavenge in the bins.

To 'Candid'

Fri, 05/06/2009 - 19:12

For someone who claims to have grown up in the country your views on on how a dog or cat kills are right up the creek! If you ever owned a cat you'd see how it kills by prolonged torture, patting a half-chewed crippled mouse or young bird around sometimes for hours - and it's a well-known fact that cats are by far the biggest killers of song birds, with no human control whatsoever. In contrast dogs kill by a quick chop around the neck, no messing about, and foxhounds are bred specifically for this, and professionally controlled. The 'ripping apart' is done by the pack AFTER the fox has been killed - don't fall for that old claim. Get your facts right before you attempt to argue the case...

to Countryways

Thu, 09/07/2009 - 11:58

I suppose the hounds all line up in wait for the pack leader to perform the "quick chop"? As for "professionally controlled", how do you explain the dogs attacking family pets and running amok through private property, i.e. private gardens? It's not just about getting facts straight, it's about cutting through the bull.

These endless out-pourings

Fri, 05/06/2009 - 12:12

These endless out-pourings about how best to control foxes goes on and on... yet simple common sense says there is only one way for a certain kill - quickly by the jaws of hounds, OR, escape totally, utterly unscathed. Not a slow sickly death from poison or gas, not peppered with twelve bore shot to slowly turn to gangrene, and not slow struggling strangulation by a snare.

But then, we all know this ban was not about how 'best' to control foxes, it was about how to disrupt the 'toffs' and their country past-time by a bunch of ill-informed socialist back-benchers who knew nothing of country ways. Go hunting my friends and see just who makes up the hunting fraternity - a very, very wide cross section of country folk. Look, listen and learn, and remove this ridiculous legislation.


Thu, 04/06/2009 - 22:56

I am a whipper in. i am also a farmer and i used to do some gamekeeping as a lad. let me promise you this - i have seen four different methods of killing a fox:
when i was younger, iv seen gamekeepers...
*gas foxes, in their earths, often containing cubs (more cost efficient, apparently. this is unbearable to think about for me!)
*shot with 12 bore shotguns on driven pheasant shoots (the invited guns think its an acceptible thing to do, to shoot a fox, and it and limp off - i am not joking.)
*snared. the year before last i untangled a pregnant vixon from a snare, just in time before she strangled herself. what do the government think about all of this compared to hunting?
*pack of hounds - this is by far the quickest, i can assure you. the fox is dead within seconds. people who have never seen a kill, image a fox being torn apart alive. THE FOX HAS DIED BEFORE THIS, in one quick grab by a hound.

as you can imagine already, the ban on hunting has done the english fox no favours.

MAY IT ALSO BE NOTED, that only slower, less capable foxes prey on farm livestock such as lambs, poultry and game in their pens. this is becouse they are not healthy enough to catch their natural diet. HOWEVER, when a pack of hounds catch a fox, only the slow or less able (weak,injured) foxes get caught, as foxhounds are bred to be slower than a fox, and a healthy fox will outrun a pack of hounds anyday!

so there you are, you've heard it from the horses mouth.

TO> bobmajig

Tue, 21/07/2009 - 17:22

Whilst I applaud you for defending hunting, please think about the damage that your comments could do to other legitimate field sports.

What you have mentioned relates to a few isolated incidents but your comments tar all with the same brush and are not in the long-term interest of country life.

If you are a whipper in and farmer then I find it hard to believe that you untangled a vixen from a snare and would question the validity of your comments based on that statement.

Have a rethink...


Mon, 08/06/2009 - 08:15

I'm sure what you say is both heart felt and honest, my problem with fox hunting is that I do not see how it can be right in the 21st century for the hunting and killing of animals to be done for 'fun'. If animals have to be culled so be it but surely it cannot be right to do in the name of entertainment/sport?

i feel that the quickest way

Fri, 05/06/2009 - 16:16

i feel that the quickest way by far is dispacting foxes with a 243!. A shot from a 243 will kill a fox instantly. I guess you could argue that a bad shot may injury a fox but you could also argue that a poor set of hounds could take a long time to kill a fox. And its not just slow foxes that prey on livestock healthy foxes will do aswell. Due to the iintensification of farming it is far easier for any fox old or young to prey on livestock.

If people want to bring back fox hunting with hounds Why not bring back badger baiting, and coursing?? Surely how cruel somwthing is completely depends on what you perceive as cruel and what you perceive as sport?

Hunting Alternatives

Wed, 03/06/2009 - 19:17

Yorkie - Hunting MAY not be the ONLY way to control the fox population BUT it is the more prefereable method to shooting, gasing, snaring or poisoning. At least, it is selective and 300 years (at least) of history can not be easily wiped out.


Thu, 23/07/2009 - 06:27

Digressing from the hunting act slightly I would have to argue that done properly, snaring is the most efficient and effective method of fox control.

I'm talking about the correct use and deployment of non-locking snares in line with approved codes of practice (as happens all over the UK every day in a humane manner). These snares are checked regularly by keepers and pest controllers on a twice daily routine (above and beyond the legal minimum) and the foxes humanely dispatched. The only problem is that the bambi-brigade cannot differentiate between legal trapping/snaring and cruelty so will trespass on land and cause criminal damage by vandalising traps and snares.

The isolated and deplorable incidents using illegal locking snares and snares not checked regularly that merely give fuel to the "anti's" do nothing to aid anybody's cause and serve only to give the narrow-minded, obsessive and propaganda driven "anti-cruelty" campaigners fuel for their fire.

Lets not forget that the LACS have used snares fitted with stops for catch and release tagging in the past so they can't be cruel surely?

gilets. No its not the only

Thu, 04/06/2009 - 17:19

gilets. No its not the only way but the other methods can often prove to be much more effective, especially if there undertaken properly.

Repeal the Act

Tue, 02/06/2009 - 08:51

Are we seriously still debating the best way to control the fox population? The Hunting Act has failed, that much is not up for debate. Get rid of the Act and let's move on.

The hunt is not the best way

Wed, 03/06/2009 - 15:58

The hunt is not the best way to control the fox population. I would go as far to say that its probably the weakest method.

For goodness sake read the

Sat, 06/06/2009 - 08:36

For goodness sake read the other evidence above. Facts are facts!

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