Forget Foxes: Brits Now Hunt Men

You can no longer hunt foxes, but humans are OK
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 13, 2011 12:53 PM CST
Captain Ian Farquhar, joint master and huntsman of the Duke of Beaufort's foxhounds leads the hounds on the Badminton Estate on November 3, 2007 in Gloucestershire, England.   (Getty Images)

(Newser) – Fox hunting was banned in England, but you can still enjoy a sporting day on your horse, with a pack of dogs hunting a slightly different type of game: man. The Coakham Hunt began its manhunts—“for fun,” its website reassures—long before fox hunting and other types of hunting became illegal in 2005, the Washington Post reports. There are a few differences, of course, between this still-legal pastime and a typical foxhunt: Hunters use bloodhounds, not foxhounds; it’s less dangerous—as men, unlike foxes, tend not to dart across roads or train tracks; and the quarry, of course, does not end up dead.

The hunt’s co-founder explains that, 30 years ago, he was looking to create a sport that “would combine all the arts of venery together with a controllable quarry.” The hunt’s hounds have been bred for speed and agility, so the only chance for the hunted to evade them is the ability to outwit them. When they are inevitably caught, instead of meeting their end, the "prey" scatter food on the ground for the dogs. The only downside: Hunters are sometimes mistaken for illegal fox hunters, with shouts of “Murderers!” occasionally tossed at them.

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