rules to play fox hunting

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Rules to play Fox Hunting

21. Shooting packs
The primary objective of shooting packs is pest control but that is no reason to ignore welfare standards. No shot should be taken unless the shooter believes he can achieve a clean kill.
22. Red fox
The red fox Vulpes vulpes is the normal prey animal of a fox hunt in the U.S. and Europe. A small omnivorous predator,the fox lives in underground burrows called earths,and is predominantly active around twilight making it a crepuscular animal. Adult foxes tend to range around an area of between 5 and 15 square kilometres 2 6 square miles in good terrain, although in poor terrain, their range can be as much as 20 square kilometres 7.7 sq mi.The red fox can run at up to 48 km/h 30 mph.The fox is also variously known as a Tod old English word for fox,Reynard the name of an anthropomorphic character in European literature from the twelfth century,or Charlie named for the Whig politician Charles James Fox. American red foxes tend to be larger than European forms, but according to foxhunters accounts, they have lesser cunning, vigour and endurance in the chase compared to the European foxes.
23. Birds of prey
In the United Kingdom, since the introduction of the hunting ban, a number of hunts have employed falconers to bring birds of prey to the hunt, due to the exemption in the Hunting Act for falconry.Many experts, such as the Hawk Board, deny that any bird of prey can reasonably be used in the British countryside to kill a fox which has been flushed by and is being chased by a pack of hounds.
24. Procedure
The hunt is often the setting for many social rituals, but the hunting itself begins when hounds are cast or put into rough or brushy areas called coverts, where foxes often lay up during daylight hours. If the pack manages to pick up the scent of a fox, they will track it for as long as they are able. Scenting can be affected by temperature, humidity, and other factors. The hounds pursue the trail of the fox and the riders follow, by the most direct route possible. Since this may involve very athletic skill on the part of horse and rider alike, fox hunting is the origin of traditional equestrian sports including steeplechase and point to point racing.The hunt continues until either the fox evades the hounds, goes to ground that is takes refuge in an underground burrow or den or is overtaken and usually killed by the hounds. In the case of Scottish hill packs or the gun packs of Wales and upland areas of England, the fox is flushed to guns. Foxhound packs in the Cumbrian fells and other upland areas are followed by supporters on foot rather than on horseback. In the UK, where the fox goes to ground, terriers may be entered into the earth to locate the fox so that it can be dug down to and killed, and this is carried out as a form of pest control.
25. Autumn or cub hunting
In the autumn of each year August October in the UK and Ireland, hunts take the young hounds out cub hunting or autumn hunting in order to cull weaker young foxes which are full size by autumn season as they are born in spring, albeit not yet sexually mature until they are 10 months old and still living in their family group and teach the young foxhounds to restrict their hunting to foxes.The activity sometimes and in some areas takes place in the UK and Ireland as the practice of holding up, which consists of hunt supporters surrounding a covert, with riders and foot followers to drive back foxes attempting to escape, and then drawing the covert with the puppies and some more experienced hounds, allowing them to find and catch foxes within the surrounded wood.A young hound is considered to be entered into the pack once he or she has successfully joined in a hunt in this fashion. Only rarely, in about 1 in 50 cases, foxhounds do not show suitable aptitude, and must be removed from the pack. They may be drafted to other packs, including minkhound packs.
26. Pest control
Foxes are considered vermin by the law of England and Wales and also in some other countries, and some farmers fear the loss of their smaller livestock,while others consider them an ally in controlling rabbits, voles, and other rodents, which eat crops.A key reason for dislike of the fox by pastoral farmers is their tendency to commit acts of surplus killing toward animals such as chickens, yet having killed many they eat only one.Some anti hunt campaigners maintain that provided it is not disturbed, the fox will remove all of the chickens it kills and conceal them in a safer place.

Opponents of fox hunting claim that the activity is not necessary for fox control, arguing that the fox is not a pest species and that hunting does not and cannot make a real difference to fox populations.They compare the number of foxes killed in the hunt to the many more killed on the roads. They also argue that wildlife management goals of the hunt can be met more effectively by other methods such as lamping dazzling a fox with a bright light, then shooting by a competent shooter using an appropriate weapon and load.

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