The remaining country in the UK to allow hare coursing, Northern Ireland, voted in the assembly on June 22 to ban the bloodsport. The narrow vote — 23 – 18 — was after a seven-hour debate. It is reported that the ban will be in effect later this year. 

Whereas this is a most welcome development and positive news that reinforces the Hunting Act 2004, it’s difficult to understand how such an obvious example of animal cruelty requires a debate the equivalent of almost one working day and received such narrow support.