Gun Laws

Posted: January 27, 2012 in Welfare
Tags: , , , , , , ,

So I thought I would take a moment to write a nice summery off the laws surrounding firearms in Ireland as my lovely neighbours seem to think there are no laws and shooting on our land and off the roadside is perfectly “OK”.

Yesterday I was doing some research for my next blog and heard two gunshots going of in the near distance, my dog went crazy with stress outside as did all the other dogs within earshot. The shots came from just a few fields away as I could see flocks of birds escaping the scene.

Now only a few weeks ago one of our neighbours spotted a man pulling up outside our land and he began to shoot into our fields , this is breaking two rules within the law :

1) It is forbidden to shoot from the road or out of a vehicle .

2) Written permission from the land owner must be obtained before entering with a firearm.

Our cats frequently wander through these fields and could easily get mistaken for a small fox or other small animals so I do not appreciate people taking this risk.

In addition to the roadside and land laws there are a number of other restrictions surrounding the possession of a firearm and the animals that can be shot which I see being neglected often on news articles, and from personal experience.

Here is a list of the animals and there shooting status :

  • Rabbits: Shoot on sight
  • Fox: Shoot on sight
  • Mink: Shoot on sight
  • Pheasant: Only between November 1st – January 31st
  • Wild ducks: Only between September 1st – January 31st
  • Wood Pigeon: Protected unless damaging crops
  • Hare: Restricted by season

Now for the age restrictions:

  1. 14 + can apply for a training certificate which means they can only use a firearm under supervision from a fully certified adult.
  2. 16+ can apply for the certificate after training is completed
  3. 21+ can apply for a dealers license (further restrictions apply)

Crossbows , spear guns, paintball markers, airguns and air rifles all fall under the “need to have a license” category.

I feel the age is to low, a 14 year old is not allowed a learner driving licence, but can practice shooting animals ? a 16 year old is deemed responsible enough to take the life of an animal into his/her hands ?

Seems all a little relaxed to me. As for the weapons that fall under the liscence this does not seem to be monitored appropriatly because the ISPCA are recieving more and more cases of air gun attacks on cats and dogs day by day.

In my opinion the firearms laws need a serious re-look and need to be more restricted, surely all animals have the right to wander freely throughout land without shooting risk ? It is their right , and they where there first.

I would like to think my babies are safe to roam around the countryside without 14 year old kids and cat hating farmers posing a risk with a shotgun . . . . .

<img src="Photobucket” alt=”Tango !” />

Don’t forget to like the Pawsforamoment Facebook Page for quick and up to date Animal related news 🙂

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