- The truth-about-cub-hunting
- The Truth about Hounds Spreading Disease
- The Truth about Hunts Causing Chaos
- The Truth about Scent Laying
- The Truth about Terrier Men
- The Truth about Trail Hunting
About Trail Hunting
Public Awareness Page
Please click on links below to take you directly to the section
|Trail hunting is just a name created in 2005, and therefore not traditional.
It is considered a temporary name only used while there is a ban on hunting. Hunts now claim they have changed over to “trail hunting” which is a made-up name invented after the ban to disguise the real intent of hunting wild animals. Trail hunts claim to follow a fox-based scent, but much evidence proves this is a lie and trail hunts continue to illegally hunt foxes.
The “Hunting with Dogs Act 2004” came into force in February 2005.
Some people might say this is the worst written Act in UK history, which is full of loop-holes and allows hunts to carry on killing and mostly avoid prosecution.
Sadly, this weak Act is the only law that offers some protection to our wildlife.
Our current PM Theresa May wants the act scrapping to allow hunts to carry on hunting and killing without restriction, which is hugely unpopular with 84% of the British public, but she chooses to ignore this fact.
What is actually needed is for the Hunting Act to be amended and strengthened, the loop holes closed, correctly policed, and with adequate fines and prison sentences to deter illegal hunting.
Most of the public are unaware that fox hunting continues today despite there being a ban. Hunts continue to flout the law, making a mockery of our legal system and conning the public, police and courts.
For many outside of the hunting bubble it is hard to understand how and why these death sports continue. The reasons are complicated, and one of them is the false alibi of Trail Hunting.
It has been noticed over the last decade that many hunts split their day. They have a jolly fun ride until 2.30 ish and then, when the jolly riders who join hunts just for the fun of riding across country have mostly exhausted themselves and gone home, the hard core remaining hunters who ride to hunt and kill, begin the real business of hunting.
Foxes and Agriculture
|A large part of the foxes diet is made up of rabbits, which cause in excess of £100 million damage to agriculture each year. By removing foxes rabbit numbers will increase.
(Ref : Foxes and Agriculture IFAW Biological Sciences, University of Bristol & Environment Department, University of York)
Helping farmers : Given their diet, foxes keep the numbers of mice, rabbits and rats down, saving farmers millions of pounds in lost grain supplies.
Most pony clubs are linked with mounted hunts and, so long as these hunts claim to be trail hunting within the law, they are able to hoodwink many impressionable youngsters (and their parents) about their real intent. With a range of horse-related activities on offer which seem a million miles from the ritualised sacrifice of a fox, hare or deer, pony clubs seem to provide a perfect gateway for grooming and introducing children into the ways of the hunt.
Hunts & death sport enthusiasts all conspire to convince impressionable young minds that Trail Hunting is legitimate.
By the time the awful truth dawns it is seen as no longer awful to these impressionable minds who are indoctrinated into a world of false alibis, blind eyes and rural lies, wild mammals which are illegally hunted and killed may no longer be empathised with; reduced, instead to objects of amusement.
Hunts now seem to be targeting schools for their recruitment.
The hunt begins by taking their pack of hounds into a covert (usually a coppice, stretch of gorse, or wood) where foxes reside. The pack of hounds are then sent in to either flush the fox out in the open or try to pick up a scent of a fox, “then the chase is on”.
If the hounds do not flush out or pick up a fox trail, they then move on to the next convert.
Hunts claim they are just trying to find their pre-laid trail while doing this or were just exercising their hounds.
Trail hunts claim to deliberately not know where these myth trails are laid to simulate the real feeling of hunting foxes.
Although if the truth be known the reasons they cant tell anyone where a trail has been laid is because a trail hasn’t actually been laid.
If hunts where genuine about staying with-in the law, surely they would avoid areas with known resident foxes & dens.
Hunts have had 13 yrs to retrain their hounds to follow a non-fox scent but “choose not to” as they claim their hounds will only follow a fox based scent. This is clearly incorrect.
Their stubborn defiance only leads to illegal hunting and animals being killed.
Hunts put a lot of effort into covert laying, i.e. a term used to attract or make an area attractive to foxes by leaving food i.e. dead chickens, lambs etc to keep the foxes in the area so they have something to hunt.
This has been witnessed and caught on camera many times with hunts being prosecuted, although many hunts continue to lie and insist its nothing to do with them.
If hunts don’t chase foxes as they claim, then why do they need to feed and encourage them into area ?
Hunts claim fox numbers need to be controlled, if this is the case why do hunts go to the trouble of making artificial fox dens/earths to attract breeding foxes.
|If fox numbers need controlling (as hunts falsely claim) … then why are the hunts rearing more foxes ?
Answer : So there are more foxes to hunt.
Trained to seek out and follow live quarry with the intention of killing.
A huge scandal has been following fox (trail) hunts for many years on their methods used to train their hounds to follow fox scents. Hunters have been arrested and prosecuted for rearing fox cubs to throw alive to hounds to teach them to kill.
Cub hunting or autumn hunting as the hunts have renamed it to make it sound more publically pleasing involves : lots of riders surrounding a wood containing a fox den, sending a pack of hounds in to kill the young cubs to teach the young hounds to kill, any cubs that try to escape the riders chase them back in forcing the cubs into the mouths of the hounds to be ripped apart.. the hunts claim innocently they are only exercising the hounds.
Many hunts pre-kill the adult foxes which, given a loop hole in the law, then allows them to kill the cubs.
Any cubs which hide in the dens are either dug out and terriers are sent in underground to fight and drag the cubs out so they can be thrown alive to the hounds to rip apart.
This activity is usually done in complete secret and is totally un-policed or investigated.
This must be one of the cruellest hunting activities and one which is blatantly illegal.
“The only trail hunts follow is a trail of lies”
Fox (trail) hunts claim they lay a trail i.e. fox based urine to follow.
This has to be questioned for a number of reasons :
* The UK does not manufacture fox based urine.
* Hunts fail to produce evidence of where they are importing fox urine from or any scents, which once again questions if any of their scent claims are true.
* Considering there are over 250 hunts in the UK all hunting approx twice a week, thousands of gallons of fox urine would be needed, which dismisses their fake claims that they use fox urine or even lay a trail at all.
* Some have now changed their lie to say they now follow a (non-fox) animal based scent. If so, why are their hounds still chasing foxes.
* If they have changed to a (non-fox) animal based scent, this contradicts their other false claim that they are unable to re-train their hounds to follow anything other than fox scents.
* Hunts claim they have experimented with various fox based scents ie ground up liquidised foxes, until someone questioned where they are getting all their foxes from.
* For example if they really do lay a trail then why do they spend so much time on roads, on railway lines, in dense woods, riding through bogs and over ploughed fields, in peoples gardens, on private property, in areas totally unsuitable for riding.
The truth is fox (trail) hunts don’t lay and follow an artificial trail. They lie so much to cover up their illegal activity, once one excuse has been exposed as a lie they move onto another lie excuse.
This must be one of the most brutal and cruelest parts of hunting, not only for the foxes & badgers, but also for the terrier dogs used. All suffer horrific injuries.
Terriermen are usually seen on quad bikes armed with digging out tools and boxes attached to quad bikes which contain their terrier dogs. They are employed by hunts and seem to have three main parts to play :-
- To dig/flush out foxes that have gone to ground using their terrier dogs.
- To block up fox den and badger set holes to prevent foxes going to ground.
- Hired masked thugs who attack monitors to intimidate and prevent filming.
Dog fighting is suppose to be banned in the UK; yet a loophole in the Hunting Act allows terriermen to send dogs underground into fox dens (foxes are also a species of dog) where cruel and barbaric dog fighting takes place. The foxes are dragged out of their dens by terriers (if not killed underground) and thrown to a pack of hounds/dogs to be ripped apart. This also happens with badgers.
Unbelievably loop holes in the law still allow terriermen. The law states that terrier men are allowed to flush out a fox using two dogs but one dog allowed underground at a time …. once a fox has been dug out, it must be shot. This rarely happens and law enforcement is never around to ensure this law is enforced. There is no closed season for this practice and it happens all year round, even when fox cubs are present and the fox parents are frantically trying to protect their babies.
Terriermen hide their faces behind masks as they don’t want to be filmed. It takes a very cruel person with a twisted mind to be a terrierman.
The only way to prevent this brutal cruelty is a total ban on terriermen and the use of their terrier dogs. Animals should not be brutally dragged out of the ground or endure hours of fighting and being ripped apart. This is not only barbaric for the wild animals but also the terrier dogs used.
Foxes have been persecuted for centuries with hunting, shooting, snaring, poisoning and trapping, all of which still happen on a regular basis.
If hunts where obeying the law and not killing foxes (as they claim) then why do hunts need terriermen present on supposedly legal trail hunts. (The lies they tell). Just the presence of terriermen on a hunt indicates illegal activity but the police never question their presence.
This is one of the most brutal and disgusting laws our government shamefully still allows.
Please click on links below for more evidence
- Videos – Attacks, Abuse, Intimidation, on public by hunts
- Videos – Terriermen and their Brutality
- Photos – Sabs & Monitors Abuse & Intimidation by Hunts
- Photos – Terriermen
- Photos – Terriermen digging
- Terrier Work Wildlife Guardian.
- What happens to animals when chased.
Animal cruelty Involved
|Not only is foxhunting cruel for the poor hunted animal (fox, hare, deer) …. but also for the hounds and terrier dogs involved.
The hunt horses also suffer. (Please click on link below)
Domestic pets also suffer. (Please click on link below)
Hunts claim that hounds make a quick kill with a nip to the back of the neck.
If you have ever watched a fox being ripped apart by a pack of hounds you will know this certainly isn’t true. The actual death can take some time where the fox is used as a tug of war between the hounds and slowly ripped apart. This behaviour can be observed daily with domestic dogs pulling on a toy.
A study of post-mortem examinations of foxes killed by hounds relieve that foxes died from profound trauma inflicted by multiple wounds to the body.
The study showed that in many cases foxes are disembowelled first. The Burns report also concluded that hunting with dogs causes animal suffering both during the latter stages of the chase and at the kill.
A kill by a pack of hounds is one of the most brutal events to witness and totally unnecessary.
Foxes and Conservation
|Agricultural intensification, habitat loss, pesticide use or other factors is by far the major factor in the decline of most wildlife in Britain. Thus foxes do not pose a significant risk to conservation interests and there is no justification for widespread fox control on conservation grounds.
(Ref : Foxes & Conservation IFAW Biological Sciences, University of Bristol & Environment Department, University of York)
Taking a pack of hounds, trained to kill, to a covert which has resident foxes & dens proves “intent” to hunt.
Hunts say : They were just exercising their hounds.
If you are really following a trail, then why are you standing around, surrounding a wooded area.
Hunts say : We are having a rest and trying to create the community country social feel.
Why did you chase and kill a fox.
Hunts say : it was an accident a fox just happened to pop up in front of the hounds.
Why did you chase and kill a deer.
Hunts say : Cos a loop hole in the Hunting Act says we can if it’s for research purposes.
Hounds chasing foxes on roads and railway lines ?.
Hunts say : oops hounds will be hounds, and we did try to call them off.
If it was a legal hunt, then why do hunts need terrier men present with terrier dogs in boxes on quad bikes.
Hunts say : They are there to open gates for us and fix fences.
If it was a legal hunt, then why are you hunting on roads, even when sabs are not present ?.
Hunts say : It was the sabs fault, they called the hounds onto the road.
If it was a legal trail hunt ie following a trail, then why are you hunting through bogs, over ploughed fields, over barbwire fences, trespassing in peoples private gardens ?
Hunts say : They want to create the simulation of a real pre-ban hunt.
If it was a legal trail hunt, then why do hunts object to being filmed.
Hunts say : Cos all people trying to film the hunt are perverts, but we don’t mind being filmed when we are posing on boxing day.
If it was a legal hunt, then why do you attack the monitors who are trying to film.
Hunts say : Cos they scare us so we ram into them with our horses and whip them.
But a lot of the monitors are retired little old women who don’t want to see wildlife being killed.
Hunts say : oh just get out of our way you dirty old paedophile pervert.
Why do hunts and their terriermen / supporters, attack monitors vehicles, slash tyres, break windows etc.
Hunts say : Who ? they are not with us.
If hunts were hunting totally legal, then why do hunts illegally block roads with their vehicles to prevent monitors getting past and filming the chase.
Hunts say : duh ill move it now but got a bad back so might take an hour.
If hunts are hunting legally as they claim, then why is it constantly being reported of hounds running riot on roads, railway lines, through people’s gardens, public areas, private property, trespassing, attacking people’s pets, entering houses, being run over on roads ?
Hunts say : Police fail to uphold the “Road Traffic Act 1988 Section 27 Control of dogs on roads” so we get away with it, no one checks our hounds are micro chipped, we don’t pick up their poo, we don’t keep our hounds under control at all times, we just claim they are being used for sporting purposes, even when they are just being exercised. We just ignore the law. If one of our hounds runs on road and causes an accident we can claim to be miles away and say its not one of ours. Because no one checks if our hounds are micro chipped there’s no way the police can identify who the hound belongs too.
If hunts were hunting totally legal as they claim, then why do hunts go to great length to prevent filming and block views of questionable hunt activity ?
Hunts say : Our horses & supporters just happen to wander in front of the camera.
Why do hunts attack saboteurs & monitors ?
Hunts say : Because they spoil our days hunting by filming us and we don’t like our hunting activity being caught on camera.
But a lot of saboteurs are very well-educated college students who have a passion in protecting our wildlife from being ripped apart.
Hunts say : saboteurs just don’t like us country folk because we are a better class and privileged.
But most hunters are the most fouled mouthed common thugs. A lot of hunt riders are (hire a horse) day hunters from the city. Its not about class its all about protecting our wildlife.
City folk don’t understand country folk.
Scents start losing their strength after 3 hours depending on weather conditions so why are hunts still claiming to be following their (myth) trail which has been laid in the morning.
Hunts say : Ahh well it must have been a very smelly trail.
Hunts claim they lay an artificial trail to follow, so why can’t hunts ever tell anyone where this (so called) trail has been laid and why don’t police, judges ask ever question this and ask for proof ?.
Hunts say : We don’t know on purpose to simulate the real pre-ban experience, but the real truth is we don’t know because we don’t actually lay a trail.
Hunts claim to be using a fox-based scent ie urine. But considering there are over 250 fox hunts in the UK, all hunting approximately twice a week, over 100,000 gallons of this scent would be needed. The UK doesn’t manufacture fox scent, hunts would need an import licence to import it, also a licence to spread it. So if hunts are really using a urine based fox scent as they claim, where are they getting this scent from ?
Hunts say : Umm no one has ever questioned this.
But if hunts don’t know where the trail is being laid i.e the route they are taking, how can risk assessments and health & safety checks be done. ? They are a profit business/club that arranges an event/activity ?.
Hunts say : We are just exercising the horses and hounds.
If hunts are really laying this myth trail that no one has ever witnessed, why does the hunt spend most of their time galloping up roads, in areas totally inaccessible to horses.
Hunts say : We are trying to simulate the pre-ban hunting experience (umm I think this old excuse is wearing a bit thin now)
Who lays these so called myth trails ?
Hunts say : The trails are laid by hunt employees on quad bikes dragging a trail rag.
But quad bikes can’t go over fences, through hedges, through dense wooded areas and why is there never any evidence of quad bike tracks. ? Why doesn’t the police or courts question this or ask for proof of trail laying ?.
Hunts say : Ahh must be a day when we use a human runner.
A human runner who can run and lay a trail for a day’s worth of trail hunting and cover a huge area ?
Hunts say : Ahh must be a day when we use a horse & rider to drag a trail rag.
Do they start out in the dark then ? and surely to cover such a large area would take many hours ? by the time the hunt actually started trail hunting the scent would have disappeared ?
Hunts say : Well we don’t actually lay a trail but don’t tell anyone, its all one big huge lie so we can carry on fox hunting and break the law under the disguise of a different name.
But surely that’s illegal against the law ?
Hunts say : We don’t care , we have pro hunt MPs, judges, law enforcement to protect us and a Hunting with dogs Act 2004 full of loop holes. Plus we do sponsor and support the Tory Government with large amounts of money for our votes.
Prosecution is difficult because of the ridiculous requirement of evidence needed to show “intent” a loop hole which CPS & judges seem to have created and has caused a lot of problems with prosecution and policing.
Despite video evidence showing hunts chasing foxes, the CPS & Judges now require evidence to prove a hunt was “intentionally” chasing an animal with dogs.
Can you imagine if all our other UK laws where based on intentional.
Why do judges insist on the prosecution having to prove intent when evidence clearly shows hunts chasing a fox.
example : Would murderers, rapists, thieves claim “oops” they didn’t mean to intentionally murder or steal something, it was an accident and get away with being prosecuted.
This to put it in simple terms is what has been happening with illegal hunting.
Intentional : Any hunt who sets out :
• With a pack of hounds trained to kill and follow a fox, deer, hare scent. (ie purposely setting out with killing tools (hounds) which have been trained to follow animal scent).
• In an area with known wildlife. (ie purposely seeking out victims).
• With little control over hounds. (ie knowingly that their hounds will chase an animal).
• With terrier men in tow. (ie with terriers ready to be put to ground seeking out hunted animals taking refuge).
• Illegally blocking roads to prevent themselves being filmed. (ie trying to cover up a crime).
We believe this shows intention enough to prosecute these hunts and they should not be allowed to use the excuse of an accident to avoid being prosecuted. The law should support this.
Hunts must clearly display they have control of their hounds and a reckless clause should be included into the Hunting Act to prevent accidents and lies.
Hunts have had 13yrs to retrain new hounds to follow a non fox based scent but have refused to do this.
Hunts must be held accountable by law for their hounds actions :-
- Chasing and killing animals
- Trespassing on peoples private land
- Running riot on roads causing accidents
- On railway lines
- Recklessly out of control
- Killing domestic pets
- Spreading TB throughout the countryside
The C.P.S (Crown Prosecution Service) require video evidence of the fox being chased by hounds followed by the huntsmen actively encouraging the hounds to chase …. but one main problem the CPS and the Hunting Act fail to acknowledge is the “Foxes Natural Behaviour” in prosecutions.
Foxes have a very acute sense of hearing and will be able to hear the hunt coming from miles away. Their natural instinct would be to hide, but with their dens being block up they are forced to run instead. The fox maybe in front of the hounds by 10 mins to start with. Foxes are quick but lack stamina, hounds are slower but have more stamina, the hounds eventually wear and chase the fox down. To capture all this on video without any video breaks as required by the CPS is near impossible. Hence why hunts get away with illegal hunting and the main reason hunts violently try to stop sabs/monitors catching up with the chase to film.
The only people trying to ensure this (supposedly) hunting ban is being enforced are the public (sabs & monitors) doing the job the police are supposed to be doing.
Police very rarely go out into the field or investigate; therefore hunting remains totally unchecked and unmonitored by the law.
Police rely on the public to do their work for them collecting evidence of illegal hunting.
Hunts do not like sabs & monitors spoiling their day of killing, so will often try and get sabs & monitors arrested to keep them out of the way for the day.
Sabs and monitors are volunteer members of the public who are attacked on a regular basis, have threats and abuse thrown at them, families threatened if hunts discover who they are, vehicles damaged with no support from the law while they try to gain evidence of illegal hunting. All done for no personal gain except for the love of animals and to protect our wildlife.
Due to the threats from hunting thugs, the Sabs have to keep their faces covered to prevent being recognised which could result in their families being attacked by hunt supporters or their jobs being threatened.
In Oct 1994 an explosive device was placed under the car of a monitor in Milton Keynes. The bomb exploded at 9.00am destroying the underside of vehicle.
Sabs/Monitors face a constant barrage of threats, violence, intimidation and damage to their property from hunts and their supporters.
Please clink on link to see video evidence.
With the public becoming more aware of trail hunts illegal activities, thuggery, blatant disregard for the law, cover ups, bias policing, cruelty etc, there is growing frustration at the failure of MPs, Police, PCC to ensure these hunts are brought to justice and do not make a mockery of our justice system.
|Example 1. : A recent Boxing Day hunt meet video showed a terrierman’s quad bike illegally over loaded with men sitting on the rear mud guards, without a registration plate therefore not legal to be on road, untaxed, without insurance driving up the main high street past a police van with policeman watching and turning a blind eye.|
This video has been shared across the internet to millions of people.
If a member of the public rode a bike in this manner they would be arrested immediately but hunts believe they are above the law.
|Example 2. : Police claim they haven’t got the funds to police illegal hunts but on 23rd December, Baronet Sir Philip Naylor-Leyland phoned police to falsely claim two members of the public (monitors) were spraying acid around the area of a hunt he was organising. Clearly rattled after having his showpiece Christmas fox hunt ruined, 19 police cars turn up armed with pepper spray to threaten 2 members of the public. These protestors were filming suspected illegal hunt activities and spraying citronella
i.e. a herbal spray used to mask the smell of a fox (basically an air freshener).
What a complete disgrace and waste of tax payers money for police to over react in such an appalling way.
No arrests were made but clearly Baronet Sir Philip Naylor-Leyland should have been fined for wasting police time and giving false information.
Do police think its their job to protect the over privileged but ignore calls from the public of illegal activities and assaults.
Over the last 13 years, hunt monitors have reported they may have only witnessed a genuine trail hunt meet (not a fake one put on for the cameras) an average of around 0.04% of the occasions.
Taking into account that there are over 250 registered hunts in the UK, hunting on average twice a week, to be reported that only 0.04% may have been witnessed as a genuine legal trail hunt is an appalling statistic.
The UK government states the Hunting Act is a police matter and official figures demonstrate that the Hunting Act has protected animals, with people being convicted for crimes covered by the law, although this response is highly questionable and does not address the current weak loop holes.
Far too many allegations of illegal hunting have not been properly investigated and far too many illegal hunters have got away with it unpunished, which means that the Act has a serious enforcement problem. The consequences for breaking the Hunting Act law is so light (inadequate fines and sentences) that it’s no deterrent.
Because of the weak enforcement by the authorities to monitor and police the hunting Act, the successful prosecution of hunts has only been possible through private prosecutions against illegal hunters. While many people have been convicted under the Hunting Act, most of these are in fact poachers rather than hunters.
A report by Lord Bonomy in his review of the “Protection of wild animals Act” commissioned by the Scottish Parliament, agrees with anti-hunt organisations and police Scotland that the current law offers too many loop holes, is unworkable and lacks definition to enable successful prosecutions.
|In 2003, thousands of hunt supporters from the Countryside Alliance signed a public declaration pledging to continue hunting, break the law and risk a criminal record or face imprisonment in a defiant attempt to beat a ban on foxhunting. This same community vows to retain and defend the infrastructure of hunting so that, if they ever succeed in repealing the Act, full-on death sports can resume seamlessly, without delay and no longer having to hide the real intent of hunting. Responding to their supporters, the Countryside Alliance announced a massive campaign of civil disobedience against the Government plans to ban foxhunting.|
Fox hunting is a toxic issue and one which 84% of the public are against. Any person that supports fox hunting does so against the public’s wishes and laws of this country. Most of the public are unaware that fox hunting continues today despite there being a ban. Hunts continue to flout the law, making a mockery of our legal system and conning the public, police and courts. What sort of example is this setting. Law enforcement agencies are often accused of turning a blind eye and failing to uphold the law and prosecute offenders despite strong evidence.
84% of the public are against hunting (foxes, deer, hares) but our hunt loving government chooses to ignore this fact to pander to their hunting sponsors. Hopefully the pro hunt MP’s won’t be in power to protect the hunters for much longer and the public will finally see through this farce and lies which will eventually be fully exposed.
The law has been brought into disrepute by hunts and their supporters. It is time the loop holes where closed, properly enforced and brought back under control.
So next time your MP’s tells you they support hunting … or….. does not support the strengthening of the hunting Act …. Remind them of what cruelty they are actually supporting and allowing to continue.
- The truth-about-cub-hunting
- The Truth about Hounds Spreading Disease
- The Truth about Hunts Causing Chaos
- The Truth about Scent Laying
- The Truth about Terrier Men
- The Truth about Trail Hunting
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