The UK’s largest shooting organisation, the British Association for Shooting and Conservation (BASC), has challenged a proposal to ban the hunting of wild mammals with dogs in Northern Ireland.
BASC Northern Ireland director Tommy Mayne recently took part in an online meeting with the Alliance Party’s John Blair, the MLA behind the proposal.
During the meeting clarification was received that the proposal is not intended to damage shooting interests, such as flushing game and pest control.
Speaking after the meeting, Mr Mayne said: “BASC welcomes the engagement and clarification from Mr Blair that he has no intentions of damaging shooting interests.
“However, with close links to animal rights groups, shooting will remain a target. BASC has urged Mr Blair to make his commitment to shooting public and help reassure BASC members and the wider community.
“BASC left Mr Blair in no doubt that, when it comes to lawful shooting sports, the association will robustly defend the interests of our members.”
The proposal involves a public consultation that closes on 12 February. BASC is urging anyone with an interest in protecting the use of dogs to shoot and hunt to respond to the consultation.
The consultation can be found online here. Any BASC member who cannot, for whatever reason, access or submit an online consultation response, is urged to contact the BASC NI office and request a paper copy. A stamped addressed envelope will also be provided.