Game hunting and deer stalking are amongst the oldest forms of forest recreation and continue to be legally enjoyed by many people across the country.
Respecting the traditional nature of this activity and recognising the social, environmental and economic benefits which hunting can contribute, Coillte permit certain types of hunting on their estate where it is deemed compatible with forest management objectives and where it is not considered to compromise the safety of other forest users or negatively impact populations of quarry species. This is in line with our Recreation Policy, Deer Management Policy(PDF 28KB) and supports the principles of multiple use forestry.
Hunting is managed and regulated through the issue of licences which are subject to open public tender. Tender bids are evaluated(PDF 36KB) based on the annual fee offered, applicant's previous experience, their commitment to safety as well as environmental and local interest considerations. Coillte is moving toward a position whereby only persons who have completed an approved competence assessment will be permitted to hunt on its lands. Currently this is a mandatory requirement for all those intending to hunt wild deer.
Coillte have produced a code of practice which establishes minimum standards expected of all persons engaged in these activities alongside compliance with national legislation and conditions of the licence agreement.
Coillte is totally opposed to illegal hunting or use of firearms on its lands which is an offence under the Wildlife Acts 1976 (as amended) and under current Forestry Bye-Laws. Suspected occurrences of this activity should be reported immediately to an Garda Síochána, National Parks and Wildlife Service. Coillte fully supports the "Shine a Light on Poaching"(PDF 4.4MB) campaign.
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