Joe Medway takes a fall while steer wrestling at the Alstonville Rodeo last year.
Joe Medway takes a fall while steer wrestling at the Alstonville Rodeo last year. Alina Rylko

RODEOS: What you had to say

Update 11.22am: OPINIONS on rodeos seem to be split down the middle, with 52 per cent of the 672 readers who responded supporting briging an end to rodeos.

The majority of comments on our Facebook post however supported the rodeo and the comments made by the chairman of the National Rodeo Association Jason Hall.

Matt Everman said the protest "still won't stop me taking my family to the Alstonville rodeo".

Megan Young said:  "Respectable sport, the animals are well looked after. When you're working on the farm, chasing a cow through the scrub, you need to have rope skills. I support the rodeo in every way. All and every animal is very well looked after. I have friends and family who breed these beautiful and amazing animals and ride these stunning beasts".

However, Adam West Hayes held a different opinion: "Would you like to be owned? One of the issues animal rights activists have with many people in society is that we view animals as property rather than living beings."

 

Original story Saturday: AS ORGANISERS of the annual Alstonville rodeo prepare for next weekend's event, so too are an animal rights group.

Rainbow Animal Rights Activists (RaRa) said they will peacefully protest the rodeo on Saturday February 24.

In a statement, they said their aim was "to educate the public on the cruelty that is inherent in the industry".

They said: "Rodeos are a cruel spectator sport that should have no place in civilised society. They are banned in the UK and parts of the US and Europe. These events are heavily opposed by all Animal Rights organisations".

The group's spokesperson Nicole Tuhou said "rodeos are fast becoming a thing of the past, more and more people are opposing them".

However chairman of the National Rodeo Association Jason Hall said rodeos were more popular than ever, posting a record number of events in 2017 and expecting to exceed that this year.

Mr Hall said he respected people held different opinions about rodeos and had no problem with people voicing those opinions.

"They have the right to have that view," he said. "I have no issue with people putting forward their peaceful point of view, as long as it is done in the right manner."

Mr Hall said the activities conducted at a rodeo reflected a traditional way of life for a large number of the population and had become a popular sport.

He said every event at a rodeo historically had a purpose - for example, some of the skills would be used to help a sick or injured animal if yards were unavailable.

He said the welfare of their animals was paramount, and the association had strict welfare codes which they expected everyone in the industry to abide by.

He said veterinarians were also either in attendance, or on call at all of their events.

Should rodeos continue to be held?

This poll ended on 20 February 2018.

Current Results

Yes

47%

No

52%

This is not a scientific poll. The results reflect only the opinions of those who chose to participate.



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