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The hunting debate continues...
A hunt in action
A hunt in action
Last updated: 18 February 2005 1118 GMT
lineBBC Gloucestershire Online user Claire makes her point on the controversial topic of fox hunting, and whether or not it should be banned.
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The Great Hunting Debate - original article

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quote Foxes are not vermin. They are wild animals, taking advantage of our greedy, wasteful habits.quote
Claire

Having spent time both in London as a 'townie', and four years in deepest darkest Gloucestershire in the middle of Beaufort country, I have spent much time pondering the hunting issue from both sides.

The conclusion that I have come to is that more energy should have been put into finding an acceptable solution rather than battling over a series of points which bear no real relevance to the essential requirement of hunting as a rural activity.

Not humane

The hunt

Whichever way you look at it, ripping a fox apart with a pack of dogs, after a long pursuit, is not humane. Even if the fox does go to ground it is dug up by huntsmen with terriers following on quad bikes and set upon by the hounds. I don't even want to go into 'cubbing'.

The pro-hunting community should have considered other angles as the main reason for justifying their activities.

For example, the crucial part it plays in uniting disparate rural communities cannot be underestimated.

Community focus

It creates a single bond for all different sorts of people, and a community focus - a social network at a time of year when it can be enormously hard to exist in rural areas.

The service it provides for livestock farmers is essential, especially at a time when disposing of fallen stock is becoming increasingly difficult. And not least the employment and revenue it creates for so many.

quote Foxes are animals that cache food, just like bears. That is why if they do get into chicken pens or rabbit hutches, they will kill all the animals.quote
Claire

Unfortunately the pro-hunt argument that hunting controls fox numbers is deeply flawed and should not have been used in their campaign.

From what I am led to believe, they hardly ever catch one.

Fox numbers are self regulating depending on food availability. Hunting certainly does not make any difference to the long term population. 40,000 foxes are killed on our roads every year anyway - this is by far the biggest control.

Greedy wasteful habits

I have heard them referred to as vermin. Foxes are not vermin. They are wild animals, taking advantage of our greedy, wasteful habits.

If their numbers are causing concern then maybe the reason their numbers are increasing should be examined.

Land owners provide foxes with ample food in the form of game birds which roam freely over our countryside. They take advantage of our careless disposal of rubbish.

We can not blame them for the problems their large population creates - more ourselves.

Also foxes are animals that cache food, just like bears. That is why if they do get into chicken pens or rabbit hutches, they will kill all the animals.

Carcasses

They would then return over many days to collect the carcasses and take them off and bury them for harder times. The reason we never see this is because we always clear away the result.

It is our responsibility to ensure that our animals our housed in fox proof enclosures, rather than blaming the fox when they get in.

Tradition stands in the way of progress. If the hunt dropped the 'tradition' of killing foxes - which actually serves no reasonable purpose today and undermines the true benefit - they might find a way to progress into a more enlightened, evolved way of continuing this essential rural activity in a manner that does not deeply offend the majority of the population.

Article by BBC Gloucestershire online user Claire

This article contains user-generated content (i.e. external contribution) expressing a personal opinion, not the views of BBC Gloucestershire.

Have your say

Fox hunting is certainly a controversial subject with passionate arguments from both sides. Let us know what you think about the ban - is it right? Is there an alternative to the ban? How will rural communities be affected by it? Post your comments below...

Click here to post a comment on this page or click here to see what's already been said...


Your comments:
Newest messages appear at the top of this thread...

natasha
fox hunting is very nastey you should not kill foxes all of us have to eat something humans eat cows,sheep and all sorts but no one comes after us wiv dogs do they i hate people who kill foxes!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! you nastey people

Megaan, Wales (:
Fox Hunting should Not be banned! They kill lams and chikens.Foxes should be Killed!

stefan
they are dirty rabie carriers

Anonymous
It is soo bad and they are cute foxes, so they shouldn't be violently killed. Do you know 15,000 foxes have been killed since 2007?!!!! Foxes are not vermin!!!

Edward
Go fox hunting!!!!

Gabriella
i think hunting should be banned because poachers only kill animals to make money and to also hang their dead heads on the wall for show and as an advantage there might be an over population of deers,duck and cowsi think hunting shouls be banned

charlotte
all those anti hunters out there who charge in and say fox hunting is cruel and then propose methods such as shooting and trapping need to get their facts straight. These are far worse methods of controlling the fox population (a necessary job) and cause pain and suffering to many animals such as badgers, deer and dogs. Furthermore the wrong foxes tend to eb caught by these methods as the hunting generally only kills the weak, injured and diseased foxes conserving a healthy fox population. If the foxes are not controlled and they start to move into the cities and disrupt the lives of those living there some anti's might change their minds. "Cruel and barbaric" i think thats the hunt sabotagers actually as they go around causing unecessary violence - some of the stories on here are terrible. I hate the amount of predjudice surrounding the hunt and how everyone is stereotyped based on the minority or based on what people want to believe. People also complain that the countryside is being lost - well the hunt is one of the few remaining things keeping the countryside alive and long may it continue. Hunting has been going on for centuries now so why cant people just leave it alone. Are there not more improtant pressing matters. 59% of the public agree with hunting while 63% of vets agree with it on welfare grounds - whatever happend to the majority vote?? Keep fighting everyone

daniel
i think fox hunting should not be banned as as it is a great english tradition.

Molly
I'm a teen and i have my colors.Hunting should not be banned. Drag Fox hunting is not bad at all. If you've never try drag fox hunt you should, its not cruel at all. when you hunt that feeling when you get when your galloping through the fields and you know that if your horse miss steps, you'll fall and get hurt bad. Its such a rush! i love it! Theres nothing else like it. I love animals and i can't stand cruelty, so drag is the way to go!

jj
i think hunting is not inhumane

emily
we should keep it!the farmers want us to fox hunt and my friend was jummping a hedge and an anty jumped up and slit my friends pony belly open they say there animal lovers. they even came with petril bombs and wepons and was hearting the kids and the ponys.

Rich, 17
I'm all up for game hunting.Hunting rabbits, pheasants, pigeon, etc is perfectly acceptable as well as bear hunting and stuff. This is only because we can eat these animals and use their fur. Fox hunting however is wrong. Chasing a fox and allowing dogs to rip it to shreds is simply barbaric. Once the dogs have had it there is no way we can use that animal for food or fur, so it is basically dying for our pleasure. It is evil and I could never allow it.

mickey weeks
i'm only 13 and i love fox hunting, it is great fun and many people go from the uk and i think fox hunting should go on!

jack
i think fox hunting should be banned because it is cruel and any animals including foxes should not go through pain and suffering

Michaela B, England, 14
I have been studying the pros and cons but am ultimately against fox hunting for many reasons. Firstly, Foxes keep down the population of recognized vermin, especially for farmers, such as mice, rats and rabbits. These make up the natural diet of a fox. They are wild animals, taking advantage of our greedy, wasteful habits especially in the city. Do we hunt foxes in the city? NO! If their numbers are causing concern then maybe the reason their numbers are increasing should be examined. There may be alternatives, in fact, there probably are many.Secondly, animals are killed for three main categories that have no real alternatives for this which are: as a food source, to protect a food source and when an animal poses a high and consistent risk to a human and rehabilitation is not fit. Foxes fit into none of these categories. Also, Many people make a living from selling drugs, stealing cars, “hitting” people and other illegal/dirty jobs. The fact that people depend on an activity for their livelihood doesn't make the activity acceptable.In addition to that, the amount of livestock that is taken through the predation of foxes is not very large and can be rather easily prevented. It hardly compares to the numbers lost when humans start tampering with nature and the numbers of fowl that die through disease leaves the numbers predated by foxes pale into insignificance.Fox hunting is the needless slaughter f foxes when other options are avaliable. it sucks! XP

Laura
WAR RAPE ILLEGAL IMMIGRANTS GUN CRIME?dont you think we should be worrying more about these things?rather than fox hunting let it be its going to happen anyway, wether there is a ban or not someeone some where will still do it.

Emily
It's just because all of the rich snobby people have nothing better to do in their sad pathetic lives than kill innocent foxes.they need to do something better just because they think they are better than all us common people because they drive a landrover and drink scotch and smoke cigars. they are no better than us. fox hunting should be banned and anybody caught fox hunting should be chased by people on horses until they are exhausted and then ripped apart. see how they like it.

Georgie
i am doing a project at school on hunting. i have been huntin my self a few times and i can tell you the actual fact is that the fox is already dead before the houns take it apart. one quick bit on the neck and the fox is dead. next you will want to ban driving altogether because it pollutes the air and the ozone layer. !!! Get over it !!!

Amy - Pontefract
i hate it it should be BANNED !!!!!!!!!!

Disapointed
i am 11 yrs old and my teacher has just told us to write a debate on fox hunting.so i was looking up information when i stumbeled across this website. i am confused and disturbed that people think it is ok for a dog to rip apart a fox. the poor creature needs food to survive and farmers aren't careful enough to keep there pens protected so a fox is bound to eat a chicken. the farmer is practically handing the chickens to the fox.Imagian u were being chased by a dog, exhausted and tired your bound to stop and have a rest. the dog dosen't answer to the fox when it's whimpering so it wouldn't listen to you. the dog would simply sieze you and rip you apart. yet you still think it's perfectly fine to kill a poor defenceless animal. i am surprised you can look yourself inthe mirror.

Daniel
I do not think hunting should be banned. God put animals on Earth for a reason. If he didn't want us hunting them then he wouldn't have put them here

Jordan
basically most people on this comment list have very little knowledge of foxes and im not going to bother arguing what this country needs is more education on the lifestyle of foxes... rabies in this country???? what :o are u living in the same century as me or what?!

Emily, England
Foxes are pests that need to be sorted out, fox hunting works and antis don't seem to understand the reasons behind it. Besides when the conservatives come back in, so will hunting..

private
i have been hunting and seen what happens there, and i have to say that i have never seen so many selfish peoplem in my life. i was most upset about how some people treated their horses. There were a few people there that did not care for them at all, and treated them like a quad bike. i love my horses and would never imagen being as nasty with then as some of the huntsman were. I went hunting to give my horse a good run and teach him to jump, but i would be happier if there were no foxes involved and it were a drag hunt. I do think that the hunting needs to carry on however,but only because farmers will always kill foxes and may start to poison or trap them which is so much worse. my grandad was a farmer, and he had foxes living on his farm. If you keep chickens in well built pens there is no problem, and if you keep larmers in feilds with sheep they will chase away foxes, again problem solved.But this will never happen as farmers would just find it easier and cheaper to carry on killing. And as for people saying foxes carry rebbies they are totaly wrong, THERE IS NO RABBIES IN THIS COUNTRY! and as for them attacking people, i don't think so.

Chole(13)
I think fox hunting is wrong ! how would you like it people or foxes came and killed you just for fun STOP IT KNOW!!!!!!!!!

ben (14)
it is discusting killing foxes they are no growing there is less of them every day i think it should be band and any one cought doing it should be fined

Jack
Fox hunting is wrong! what if it was you! that fox being chased down by hounds? well! would you like it!!!!!!!!!! Think about it!!!

Angie (12)
I think fox hunting should be legal because first of all the fox population in England is growing rapidly and the foxes are killing chickens and if people can't kill the foxes the chicken population will be wiped out in England. Most of England want fox hunting to stay because it is tradition. I mean it's been part of the tradition for so long.

Oguz (15)
Hunting is a good thing for people. Because, if they don’t hunt animals, their population is going to be much more than normal population. People are hunting animals because if hunters don’t hunt them they will kill each other and no one can get something from animals. So, if hunters kill them, they can eat them or sell them to earn money. This is help for people and fun for them. Think about foxes, they kill the other animals and they attack to people. What if we don’t hunt them? Is it going to be good for other animals and for us? Hunting isn’t a new thing in the world. From thousands of years, every hunter is going to hunt animals and there are animals in our time, too. That means: Hunters are not killing animals.I think, we should hunt animals. if you want to contact just tell here :)

Sophie
Fox hunting is the worst sport ever! All thsoe people who enjoy it should feel awful about themselves. Killing any living creature is wrong.

Gall
Arrogant hunters are vexatious and their arguments are trite and subjective, but which arguments aren't? Slavery was once a tradition too. People overpopulate the earth moreso than foxes. It is a farmer's responsibility to keep their livestock protected. The pleasure received from hunting is animalistic, and therefore "barbaric" simply because a fox kills livestock and is viewed as a horrible creature. Retaliation is just as bad. Foxes are animals, they kill things. What makes humans different? Our superior mindset? Haha, whatever. I wouldn't say hunting should be banned altogether, but at least limited.

Saira .I.S
I'm age 11 and Ihate fox hunting. It's cruel foxes have rights aswell

:]
mommy fox went out to find food for her two week old young, she never returned...BECAUSE SHE WAS TRACKED DOWN AND RIPPED APART BY THE JAWS OF SAVAGE DOGS! x

T. Clarke
I used to hunt as a child & hated it then (seeing what really goes on). Don't pretend foxes need culling. I bet those that hunt enjoy a good roast chicken but then they can just buy one in a shop. Oh the horror if a fox dares to kill a chicken itself. Suddenly they all become chicken lovers (but still eat them). A bunch of hyprocrites - disgusting, inhumane people who pretend to be animal & countryside lovers. As for what they get up to with their own hounds and horses - if only people knew...

jemma
i think that fox hunting is the best thing ever ,its good because you get to get rid off most of them and they have rabies and ther the most filthy ,dirty things ever and they eat the chickens and ducks and it stops us getting eggs and chicken to put on our plate for dinner i think that fox hunting should be stopped all over and hounds should get rid of the foxes and gordan brown should help! !

soph
well i am only 13 and been brought up wid fox-hunting and the countryside and all people who say they dont like it and think it is cruel y dont you go watch it and then say what u think you will probably change your mind.

debra
if fox huntings band then everything else will be band like bush beating and shooting and rabbiting and things like that even fishing i think it is apalutly redickulas

rachel (16)
yes i am only 16 and have lots else to think about, but the below comment shows how much i am for fox hunting!

Rachel S
I dont live in a particulally 'country' area, and i am for fox hunting all the way!! i was against the whole thing until i went and watched one for my self! my perspective changed and the fantastic method of vermin control, not only benefits farmers, but keeps thousands of people in jobs, and creates a great country day out for the family! come on government, and tree huggers, there really are more important things to think about on this earth!

Chris Mercado
Im so damn sick & tired of these lying politicians that my faith in the government has deminished & I no longer vote because there is so much ******** (expletive) in elections & candidates that people dont know what they can believe. Everybody's hand is in somebody's pocket in politics & that creates a never-ending circle of lyers, thieves & murderers that will cease to exist as long as the current system is in play & will continue to exist until there is an extermination of those crooked ******** that claim to represent the people but are really looking out for their own well being.

Alex
How can keeping the number of foxs down be classed as 'sick and twisted', what i call sick and twisted is the ********* (expletive) that go around raping children and beating up old people! Therefore it leaves one thinking that perhaps the minds of the townies sitting in there quaint little suburban bungalows, are somewhat uneducated regarding fox hunting, its a wonderful part of British culture that has been alive for centuries and it will continue to do so- all the ban has done is refuelled country folk in there passion. Alas perhaps the issue is not the cruelty to the fox but stereotypie that is eating away at the insides of many an anti, mmmmm!

private
i tink fox is absolutly stupida!ban it!

Meggie (13)
I am currently on a computer at school working on a debate to say whether I think fox hunting is right or wrong. you have to realise how cruel it is to the fox.Foxes still have feelings(granted they can't actually tell us) but they have feelings. It is purely for pleasure that you race around on horseback hunting innnocent foxes.A fox has the same right that we have to live freely and not have an early death.If you wanted to control the population of foxes it would be easier to shoot them with a gun - AND less cruel!!! The earth is over populated, do you think we should go around killing small children and pensioners because they can't fight back. Do you want us to chase your parents? your children? until they are tired while they cower in the corner? NO! It is the same thing! Fox hunting is totally wrong. If you want to have a hunt go drag hunting. You don't hurt any animals and it is cleaner. It is muxch better to have a false scent and not sacrifice Gods creatures.I hope you understand how us 'townies' feel now. It is a mindless sport. Go drag hunting instead!!!!!!! please... Thank-Youx-x-x

gabi and elly
we think it should go because if it is bannned all the dogs will have to be killed.But we are also against because it is crul.

Emily
i think you should ban it!!

Emily
ban it

katy
To the below comment, serves the huntsman right!!!! Sat on his high horse chasing something to it's death ten times smaller than himself, just deserts i'd say ha ha

Toby spencer
My whole family hunts and i dont ride but i go along for the fun. foxes are vermin and i know a few chicken farmers who absoulutly hate them. and talking of hunt sabouteuers they are like hooligans, they disrupt the hunt and wear balaclavas and stuff just to ruin peoples fun, Hunting isnt just about Killing a fox its also about socialising and getting to know new people ,when some bunch of ****** who dont now **** all about hunting come ruin it its just annoying , i have seen one incident where sabouteurs have dragged a hunt master of his horse and beat him on the floor... infront of his own family that he was trying to protect. So fox hunting shouldnt be banned!!!

katy
I own a horse and yes we live in the country side, and i totally dont see that it matters weather your a townie or not!! If you respect life then you should believe that nothing has the right to suffer, and if you are happy to follow like sheep behind a parade of murderers like yourself and have the nerve to say your superior then your wrong... If reincarnation is true then i hope you all return as foxes in which case i will certainly take up hunting, as you did xx if i chased your children in my car with a shot gun untill there were exhausted and collapsed were upon i leapt out of my car and released my dog on them who hadnt eaten in days i presume you would be okay with this on the basis that people too overpopulate the world??? Of course you wouldnt because it's one rule for one and another for everybody else... Well your all murderers who enjoy another lifes suffering to me

Emma (11)
It should be banned. Or maybe not. At my school they have asked me to write a arguement on fox hunting, i thought i should write that it's wrong. But from that poll 50% to aboub 40% something i may have just changed my mind!

Kieran
I think fox hunting is wrong

ellen K
i am 13 years old and i think that when people are against fox hunting they have no fact, no evidence of their own. if "townies" actually went out into the beautiful countryside they would realise that they dont want foxes (vermin) messing it up!!!! the goverment has better things to worry about than fox hunting like the WAR for example or the NHS !!!!!!!!! GET A GRIP !!

George, Devon
Ithink that fox hunting should not be banned because a most of the people who are agaisnt fox hunting live in cities and b the sport has been going on for hundreds of years and hunting keeps the foxes from eating our chickens. I know some one who lost all her chickens because of foxes

Thomas Hughes - Gloucester
Hunting should be banned. End of.It's so sad that people feel they have 'the right' to kill anything that comes on to their land, the foxes were here first, and you're depriving them of their own home land, and then decide to kill them if they eat, foxes kill to eat and to survive, not for pleasure.

Kerra
Deer hunting is wrong and even i admit that.What is wrong with fox hunting i cant see it sorry but i have made my choice! KEEP FOX HUNTING!!

Rebecca
You can't catch foxes unless the're in pain or dying, why not put them out of there misery? it stupid to ban it and have all those dogs killed.

amanda
i can see where people fom both sides of the argument are coming from. but i believe that fox hunting should be banned. its just like hunting dogs, but instead it's foxes. those who do it for the ride, then why not just take your horses out for a ride in the countryside, without the mass slaughter. there are many traditions that have been banned for a good cause, this should be one too.

jenny
i think you should ban fox hunting because it is crul and you would not like it if you have dogs chasing you and killing you and your mates

Grimble
i think this is just all rubbish fox hunting should be banned because fox's eating rabbits its a food chain its all jus silly to do this for a sport so you hav my vote to stop fox hunting

James
Why Ban Fox hunting. those pests took the life from my two chickens and two rabbits and one guinea pig so i think them foxes deserve being killed

Kerra
I have only caught 4 foxes in my whole life of hunting and they were ill and old.If that is not helping the envirorment i dont know what is!!!

Kerra
I agree that bear baiting is barbaric, but bears do not eat our chickens.If Fox hunting is ban I WILL NOT STOP!!!!!!

Sigourney,Devon
I live in the countryside, and all though i don't partisipate in the hunt i don't think there is anything wrong with it and that it provides jobs and controls the growing population of foxs (vermin).As for all the anti fox hunting protesters i bet half of them live in citys and have no facts on this subjects so get your facts straight before you say anything! The hunt provides jobs, pleasure and keeps the landscape form over running with vermin!And if your going to band this why don't you band everything that we enjoy? Its a Tradition so why do you have to ruin it?

Alex
It is complete rubbish to say people will lose jobs if hunting is banned. Please explain why the hunters cannot go drag hunting instead? It still involves the same preparation and people and dogs. We have just had the local hunt trespassing on our land TODAY! They have no control over their dogs! And they are so arrogant when you ask them to leave your land! We have small dogs and other domestic animals - there is no way the hounds would stop at tearing one apart if they found it in the woods. I cannot wait to have this appauling sport banned.

Courtney
I'm 13 and I love fox hunting. It's the thrill of being out there on horseback with friends in the country and the sight of a fox is the moment that we all brag about and live for. This 300 year old tradition is one that needs to be preserved. It's truely passion and the thrill of the chase; there is no way that i will let the government take that away from me!

ella and franny
PLEASE DONT BAN FOX HUNTING!!!!! OUR BEST M8 IS A HUNTER AND ALL HER DOGS WILL BE PUT DOWN AND SHE WIL LOSE HER HOUSE IF THIS GOES AHEAD!

Gillian
fox hunting is no different from Europe countries games - ie bull fighting etc - it is part of our culture - so leave alone - I am sure the royals would not like horse polo stopped as a bad sport to horses!

Nicolle
i think that there should be killing or hunting of animals just because there is no room for them to go because of all the house's being built and they cant servive with no trees and food, plus i live on a farm but that doesnt mean i kill animal and i just go hunting every hunting seasons, plus deer cause accidents.

Amy
Hunting has been a way of life for hundreds of years. We are not being cruel, foxes need controlling as do other vermin, if foxes are not controlled the population will become unstable and this will have knock on effects. How else do we control the population? shooting, poison, snares? All potentially a slow and drawn out death, at least dogs do kill the fox. Anti hunt protesters base their opinions on an emotion and not facts and then stereotype people like me, that is totally unfair. We're not barbaric, those who are willing to ruin the lives of those people who make their livings out of the hunt as well as be willing to have thousands of hounds face an uncertain future who should be ashamed of themselves! If it doesn't effect your life why should you be able to interfere with someone elses?

Stephen3
Hunting is getting banned thank god its about time!

Stephen2
People are calling the Fox vermin when really THEY are the true vermin not the fox.Foxes keep down rotten flesh if the foxes are destroyed the flesh will turn to disease and spread.

Stephen
When i grow up i WILL join the Hunt Saboteurs and interupt hunts you see if i don't.HOW can you be that sick some of you who get a kick out a killing a innocent fox. BAN HUNTING WITH DOGS!

BusyBee
If you were to leave the foxes alone, then they would like many other animals control their own population, they have a hierarchy, but becuase they are shot and hunted they breed randomly and in actual fact by killing them as we do we create more breeding and hence more foxes. However in favour of Hunting, I do believe it is part of a British Culture that is rapidly dying, because of bureaucrats and do-gooders that are in fact creating a lawless, racist world.

John
I feel that if foxes have to be culled then have one man go out with his hounds and do this.What is distastful are the bloodthirsty riders who relish the whole experience and have a great day out at the expense of the fox. It makes it akin to bullfighting which is mostly abhored in this country

Man in black
I think hunting is cruel and should not be allowed in the first place beacuse in a way foxes have a there own life to live in. THANKS GOD THE GOVERNMENT HAVE BANNED IT!!!!!!

laura gell
i think we should stop animal salurter because it is horrible i sit there all night crying because people are treating animals baddley please stop pleace

Alf P - english
I don't often have a say, but I think if your gonna ban Hunting, why not ban Football. There both shocking sports with no real point to them. There both a juxtapose of wealth and there lacks intelligence in both sports. But what do I no? What does ANYONE no?

redbrickhead
foxes get what they deserve.

niall
the foxes never did anything to us so why should we do it to them

Ingidi
It’s a glorious sport. Not actually a bunch of bloodthirsty toffs brutally slaughtering masses of poor, terrified foxes with their fiercsome dogs and tootling trumpets, but people who like having an exiting ride across country and seeing hounds at work. So why don’t we go drag hunting instead? Here’s why. · It’s not as fun because it’s predictable and you go over the same land over and over again, which destroys the ground. · It would mean that the fox population is not being controlled. Why is that a bad thing? Here’s why. Because foxes are vermin, if they weren’t culled, there would be so many that there would not be enough food for them all so they’d resort to farm animals and some starve. Farmers would lose a lot of money. But why hunt with hounds? Here’s why. · Culling foxes is a delicate ecosystem, which means it is difficult to get a good balance of them (not too many not too less). And hunting is the best way to make a balance of their numbers, and evenly throughout the country. · It is the kindest way because it is a quick, clean, natural death, and foxes are not distressed because they know what’s happening. They kill their prey like that too, and they aren’t like humans. Death is not such a terrible thing for them. · And anyway, all the foxes that are killed by the hunt are the sick, weak ones (which are the ones that kill farmstock), so it’s better for them to die anyway. Fit healthy foxes always get away because they are quicker, cleverer and know the country better then the hounds. So it’s very fair. Survival of the fittest. · Hunting makes foxes change territory which is good because then they spread out and don’t inbreed (inbreed means get one area overcrowded so there is not enough food for all). · All other ways of culling do not help the fox population stay at its best with a balance of healthy foxes. I don’t think the foxes would thank you for voting against hunting. But why do we dress like toffs? Well…why not? · If hunting is stopped billions of jobs would be lost, not to mention the countless number of horses and hounds that would have to be destroyed. Things would start going a bit pear shaped. But that won’t happen. People can do whatever they want, even if they are toffs. And they will do it anyway, because it would be rediculas to stop. I will hunt as much as I can this season to be rebellious.

jerry
u anti-hunters dontknow what urtalking about. have u been hunting? no. do u know anything about what happens? no u dont. so keep ur stupid, ignorant, prejudice opinions 2 yourself. & no we don't 'ALL know how cruel and barbaric' it is,because most ppl r sensible enough 2 see that it's actually an essential part of the country side ecosystem, 2 keep a balance of nature. it's not cruel, foxes have 2 b culled & hunting's the best way to do it- it's a quick death, it's survival of the fittest, only weak & deseased foxes r killed & it keeps a nice, equal number of foxes spread out over the country. this is y we have healthy foxes & y we r so successful at farming & why the foxes aren't deseased & starving & spilling into the town & making a mess & killing ur cats & tearing open ur rubbish. hunters do care 4 the animals and the countryside, they understand it. & u don't. how do u suggest the fox population is controlled? there's no better way. & anti-hunters have displayed much more violence &idiocy, as they dont even have a good reason to be angry. hunters DO have a good reason. if hunting is banned a huge part of their life is taken away from them, loads will lose their jobs & millions of horses & hounds'll have 2 b killed. & actually they're not all 'snobs' they're the nicest people i've met in my life.& they have the right to do what they feel the need 2 do. hunting WON'T stop, so get used to it. & find out all the facts before u feel qualified 2 post these laughably stupid comments.

Kitty
I hate fox hunting cos of the terror they put the foxes through and they shoot any damaged horses or dogs.Someone down the road from me has a sign in the window saying Ignore unjust law, keep hunting. It came as no surprise to me they had a maltreated dog in thier back yard, a broken leg and it looked nearly dead. Being under 18 there is nothing i can do myself.. Stop Hunting.

Su Kaolla
I'm happy to see hunting continue, I may not totally agree with it or the people who participate in it but it provides jobs in the countryside, serves some function as pest control. Hunting is no more inhumane than poisoning or trapping and at the end of the day is a lifestyle choice. The government should leave it be and get on with running the country, and not people's lives.

Jodie
I believe this is a stupid issue if you are to ban this why not ban everything all together is it not enough our soldiers are being killed in Iraq and all pollititions are talking about is Fox Hunting. Keep british heritage alive save the peoples jobs and there animals lives think of the foxs and horses which will be killed without reason all because of the ban. DONT BAN A SPORT WHICH HAS BEEN GOING FOR HUNDREDS OF YEARS

crew at bridgy
we all think that fox hunting should be band because it is just killing the cool foxes.......peace

Georgina
i have lived in the countryside all my life and i HATE foxes the reason it shoudnt be banned because 1)my rabbit got eaten by a fox 2)i got knocked over by a fox in my own garden 3)do you know how many Horses and Hounds that would be sacrificed if it would be banned 4)for each hunting group they only kill an average of 7 foxes each time they hunt which is nothing compare to how many horses & hounds will be killed and people out of jobs 5)they kill lambs, pets and chickens for fun 6)they may look sweet and cute BUT they are menices

Jack T
Ban it altogether!

Yolanda
As an American I always am amused at the way the British think. Everything to the British is all about tradition. Just like why in this day and age you all still believe in royalty and why do you think that fox hunting is such a great country "tradition". Tradition is not always such a great thing. You must remember that slavery was a tradition for hundreds of years, but we are more enlighted today or are we?

Barry
Fox hunting? How much time is this government going to waste on such as stupid issue? Why ban it? is it really doing anything half as bad as Iraq, terrorism, our poor NHS, Crime and many of the other major issues we now face. Tony Blair get a grip on your party and stop this pathetic roller coaster of a class war against a naturally law obiding minority, otherwise I can forsee this becoming an bloody civil war, for what.. a fox that will be shot to extinction if hunting is banned.

LYN
Fox Hunting is Barbaric, it is NOT a sport for the Fox, only for People that like the Blood and GUTS and Would have been banned years ago if it had not been for Royalty and Toffs. Drag Hunting is not acceptable or good enough for them is it...why ? because there is no fear, or blood involved for them.

Madeleine - USA
horrendous way to die for a fox, is a sadistic sport ....foxes cute creatures, i just love animals.

Keith Miles
Hunting cannot be justified - it's inhuman and belittles the dignity of us all everytime it happens. Yes there are worse things in this world and they need to be addressed as well - not used as a reason for contiuing this appaling activity.

J Mayo
I have never hunted, though I have seen them out-very colourful too. I live quite quite near a hunt and it appears everything has to stop for it. In spite of this, I still think hunting with dogs should be allowed; foxes are like thugs - they kill just for the sake of it. They'll kill a coop full of chickens and perhaps take only one.A friend's daughter had four pet rabbits that lived in an outside cage, killed by a fox one night. It didn't take one - just killed them for fun. The five year old was distraught. If the fox population continues to grow, they'll come even further into cities and towns than they do now and cause problems spreading disease, etc. Foxes might look cute but at the end of the day, they're vermin.

Susanne K
Thank you for your very informative and diplomatic article. Could this be the making of a great journalist?

Hughie T
It has been in my exprience that people against the issue, tend to make assumptions on what actually goes at a hunt. Things seem to exaggerated and sound far worse than they actually are. Lastley, I pay my tributes to the authory of this article and commend the approach taken.

John
It is NOT intended to ban fox hunting. The intention is to ban HUNTING (ANYTHING)WITH DOGS !!!!

loz
I have lived in the village of kemble near cirencester all my life and i have never seen a fox attack chickens,sheep or whatever middle class say they attack ever! Fox hunting is the most barbaric thing i have ever seen, next to war and capital punishment and im fully against it, when you see a nice looking animal torn to peices 500m away when your five years old has quite an effect on you. To my experiance though the hunt seems to be more trouble than the fox. The hunt round here have be seen trampling through peoples gardens and damaging their property, though it hasnt happedend in recent years. However foxes can be a bit of a pest when it comes to it but not as much,of what ive seen,as the 'hunt'.

daniel
it should totally be band the animal has the right to life like any other living thing.

steve
ONly a small minority of the population are able to go out and experience the hunt for themselves to develop their opinions. Therefore this is relevant to the way in which most of the population form their views.

George
I think that anyone who is 'against foxhunting' should first go out and watch a hunt and see what goes on and not form their opinions on the back of something they have read or someone has told them. Their opnion will be much more respected by me!!

Kez
fox hunting is sick ans twisted, there is no need for the cruelty involved, if there is a serious fox population problem then something humane should be done about it, cruelty is wrong whether is to a human or an animal.

Lou
More people die in Iraq in a month than foxes die through hunts in a year. Enough said.

LOUISE
I feel that if foxes have to be culled then have one man go out with his hounds and do this.What is distastful are the bloodthirsty riders who relish the whole experience and have a great day out at the expense of the fox. It makes it akin to bullfighting which is mostly abhored in this country.

George Hood
I feel really informed and motivated by your brilliant comments.

Tony Dowling
Hi, What methods are available to control foxes with poor health? Snare........ Poison....... Shoot........ Hunt with hounds........ The reasons for the above speak for themselves. If hunting by the gun is the acceptable method what about the increase in gun ownership problem. The police cannot control crime with guns now. (See current gun crime ). Where are the anti gun lobby now with there views on a larger gun ownership population? If hunting a live quarry with a live quarry is not acceptable why is it ok to fish with live worms and maggots. Do worms and maggots not get traumatised being deliberately drowned. Do they also not feel pain when put on a hook. Do pheasants not get traumatised being made to fly by being driven by gun dogs only to be shot? Why cannot the government just be fair? ban one then ban them all.

john
Foxes are vermin, and as such should be kept to a minimum. Perhaps if the fox population were moved into cities, then there may be a more rational debate. This ban is caused by envy. Whilst there are strong arguments for banning deer hunting, I cannot support a ban on fox control. What next - a ban on shooting, and then fishing - no not fishing - there are too many labour votes!

David Gibson
It's time pro hunt supporters came clean, hunting is bloody good fun !Whilst the end is a bit messy, it is usually quick -much quicker and less cruel than putting beasts through an abbatoir

Marty
People in Africa are dying every day- the American right are turning the middle east into their very own Disney land- women are drug raped every week and what do we get outraged and worked up about- fox hunting? Regardless of whether it is cruel or not, it is an animal. A fox is not a human being and nor is it a God. I don't like fox hunting. But then, I don't like Man U but I don't want to ban Man U just because I think they're rubbish. I'm against fox hunting. But then, who am I? Am I lossing my life and income as a result of a ban? Will I be lost in the world without my former way of life? This a non-issue. Hunting should be allowed. We need to look at more serious problems.

Martin
It's nothing to do with a class war. It's about behaving in a civilised way. So hunting isn't barbaric then? Great! Let's bring back bear baiting and cock fighting! The pro-hunt lobby make me sick.

Michael Jowett, England
This 'townie' thinks that hunting should not be banned. While it is true that we would not dream of inventing it now if it did not exist it is not worth banning it - better to ban alchohol or tobacco or fishing (but too many votes lost there!). It kills few foxes, most of them infirm anyway. it provides some work. Gradually hunting will die out ayway - let it happen naturally over a few years.

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