Persistence of fox hunting means I’m rejoining League Against Cruel Sports – Steve Cardownie

Fox hunting may have been outlawed in Scotland, but some continue to defy the law, writes Steve Cardownie.

Tuesday, 28th January 2020, 5:00 pm
Foxes are apparently still being hunted for ‘sport’ (Picture: AFP/Getty)

Some time ago I wrote about the despicable practice of badger baiting, the tell-tale signs to look out for and how to report suspicious activity to the police.

It is no less worrying therefore to learn that fox hunting is still on the go throughout the Scottish countryside. An investigative reporter recently provided a detailed account of a fox hunt near Jedburgh where it seemed that it was about to pursue a young vixen with dogs until they were prevented from doing so by a League Against Cruel Sports investigator, who pointed out that they were breaking the law, upon which the dogs were recalled and the fox continued to enjoy its freedom instead of being ripped apart by a pack of hounds.

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In the interests of pest control, a fox may be flushed out of cover whereupon it should be despatched by way of a gunshot, not pursued by the pack until it is caught and torn asunder, which is against the law. Unfortunately it seems that many hunts continue to defy the law in the name, not of pest control, but of ‘sport’ and do so quite openly and regularly.

In my younger days I was a member of the League Against Cruel Sports and was greatly influenced by a book titled Outfoxed by Mike Huskisson, first published in 1983. In it he goes undercover and exposes what goes on amongst the hunting community and the sheer barbarity involved.

Oscar Wilde once wrote of fox hunting as “the unspeakable in full pursuit of the uneatable” which aptly sums it up.

As soon as I finish typing this I’ll be filling in a membership form for that worthy organisation mentioned above and regret allowing it to lapse in the first place.