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Last Updated: Thursday, 1 September 2005, 15:18 GMT 16:18 UK
Hunt sells hounds ahead of season
The South Nottinghamshire Hunt is selling eight of its hounds ahead of the new hunting season.

The hunt said the size of the pack needed to be reduced so the huntsman could keep control of the dogs, which can no longer chase live foxes.

A hunt spokeswoman said selling dogs was better than having them put down.

The remaining 46 will be retrained to pursue a scent trail, complying with laws introduced in February. The new hunting season begins in October.

In the weeks leading up to the start, the hounds will be trained to follow the scent trails - with different ones being tested.

The South Nottinghamshire Hunt said it would continue to meet, and would keep within the new law.

Hunt secretary Anne Jepson said: "Some of the hounds have been what's termed 'drafted out' to other countries - Ireland, France, Italy.

"Some horses have been sold. So there's been a reduction, but we're still there, we're still going forward."

Anti-hunt campaigner Dr Jane Evans of the League Against Cruel Sports said: "We fully applaud all the hunts who say they are working with drag-hunting and it could be a dawn of a new phase for equestrianism and a new phase for countryside activities."

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