Attempts to bury video of deer running through Ashbourne, Co.Meath

Attempts have been made to suppress a video showing a deer nearly colliding with a vehicle during a hunt in Ashbourne two weeks ago.

The 7-second footage (filmed on 30th January) shows the terrified animal running through the Ashbourne House Hotel’s beer garden before leaping over a wall and running on to a busy main road where it nearly collides with a vehicle.

See the video at http://youtu.be/ca0rtgdByHg

The father of the girl who filmed the incident has revealed that “people from the hunt tried to get the video taken down” but they rejected the request and refused to remove it from Facebook. However, another Facebook page did remove a copy of the video it had uploaded.

“One other very popular Facebook page in Ashbourne had posted it but caved into their demands and removed the video,” he stated in a comment posted on the Irish Council Against Blood Sports (ICABS) Facebook page. “It’s a disgrace that they were allowed to censure other people like that. They clearly had something to hide. But I am glad that the video has now gotten such coverage, and has raised the debate about blood sports.”

“I was standing beside my daughter when she took that video,” he outlines in the Facebook post. “The poor creature ran through the traffic at the main intersection and into a gated dead end. It then jumped the wall, and ran through the tables in the beer garden towards us. We had to step back out of its way. That’s when the video starts. It then jumped the wall and, as can be seen, it ran into the traffic again, jumping into the air. It jumped a second time, but my daughter had stopped filming by then. It was clearly distressed, and in this state, was a danger to itself, and drivers and pedestrians.”

A motorist who contacted ICABS described what she witnessed as follows: “The deer was on the road and ran across to the far side opposite back of Ashbourne House Hotel through the bushes and came back out onto the road again and back in again. It looked petrified just hopping around [and] trying to get to safety.”

Another motorist commented: “There was a hunt on and I was driving by the cinema [and] it ran out in front of my car.”

ICABS spokesperson Aideen Yourell commented: “This incident is shocking from the point of view of both animal welfare and road safety. Some years ago, a hunted deer which jumped onto a road in County Meath, was struck by a car and had to be put down due to its injuries. The occupants of the car were left badly shaken and lucky to be alive. We are appealing for anyone who witnessed this incident to come forward with an account of what they saw as well as any video or photos.”

According to the Wildlife Amendment Act 2010, “a person who hunts deer with two or more dogs shall be guilty of an offence.”

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