The Irish Council Against Blood Sports has criticised the Government for allowing the coursing clubs to capture hares from the wild.

The group say the Irish Coursing Club was issued a licence Minister for Arts, Heritage & An Gaeltacht Jimmy Deenihan and will now be able to catch hares for use as live lures at coursing meetings.

The group said there are around 70 coursing clubs in the country and claimed each required approximately 100 hares for their two to three day meetings.

They said the licensing came as a ‘huge disappointment to the majority who want blood sports banned’.