15 ‘feral’ horses and foals causing traffic chaos in Limerick

Deputy Crowe hit out against 'feral' horses in Limerick. Photo: Liam Burke.

A HERD of up to 15 ‘feral’ horses and foals have been causing mayhem galloping along Longpavement Road and around the Moyross and Meelick areas.

Drivers and locals have been reporting that the wild horses don’t appear to be under anyone’s control and are leading young foals into traffic, making road users deeply concerned that there could be a serious accident .

As a result, Clare Fianna Fáil TD Cathal Crowe has called on Limerick City and County Council and An Garda Síochána to urgently bring the wild horse situation in the area under control.

“Throughout last week and over the weekend, I received many phonecalls from Meelick and Parteen residents who encountered up to 15 feral horses at a time galloping along the Knockalisheen and Long Pavement Roads,” said Deputy Crowe.

“These horses were not haltered, not tethered, nor were they confined to any enclosure. They were simply running at free will across roads and footpaths.”

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Deputy Crowe said that several of the horses had small foals and they were in a distressed state when they encountered cars.

“My fear is that if these horses are not brought to safe enclosures, there will be a very serious road traffic accident – and possibly a life lost. I also fear for the welfare of these horses.”

The Clare TD wants to see the animals “properly cared for in fields with appropriate fodder and secure fence enclosures. The era of long acre grazing should be confined to the past”.

This comes as the Limerick Post reported last week that 1,057 horses were sized in Limerick since 2016.

Since the beginning of the month, two horses were seized in Limerick – one on the Roxboro Road in February 10 and another from Greenfields, Rosbrien, on February 14.

In response to a query from the Limerick Post, Limerick City and County Council said it has “statutory powers with relation to animal control under the Control of Horses Act 1996 and the Limerick City and County Council (Control of Horses) Bye-Laws 2017”.

“Straying horses are a nuisance to residents of the affected areas and pose a danger to public safety.  In collaboration with An Garda Síochána, the council regularly seize horses straying in public areas of the city.

“However, council can only seize horses within our functional area. In nearly all cases where horses are seized, they are rehomed to equine charities.”