Definition of blood sport noun from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary

 

blood sport

 noun
noun
BrE
 
; NAmE
 
[usually plural]
 
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a sport in which animals or birds are killed Culturefield sportsThe main field sports are hunting, shooting and fishing. They are often also called blood sports because they involve killing animals. In Britain all three sports were traditionally associated with the upper classes, although today they all, especially fishing, attract a much wider group of people.Fox-hunting, usually called just 'hunting' in Britain, was until recently the most common form of hunting. A pack of specially trained dogs (called foxhounds) chase after and kill a fox while a group of people follow on horseback, traditionally wearing pink (= red jackets) and blowing horns. Fox-hunting was once a popular subject for painting and some English countrypubs display sets of prints. Fox-hunting, together with stag-hunting (= the hunting of male deer with dogs), hare coursing, in which greyhounds (= a type of dog) chase after a hare (= a type of rabbit) are now illegal, as are other blood sports such as badger-baiting and cockfighting.The ban on hunting was an important political issue in Britain. Many people believe hunting is cruel and should be stopped, but some people living in the country see the ban as an attack on their way of life. The ban finally came into effect in 2005. Organizations opposed to hunting with dogs include the League Against Cruel Sports and the RSPCA (Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals). The main organization in favour is the Countryside Alliance.Shooting game birds, such as pheasant and grouse, is a sport mainly of the upper and middle classes. Grouse shooting begins each year on 12 August, the Glorious Twelfth, and takes place mainly in Scotland. The hunters often employ beaters to drive the birds towards their guns. Those who object to shooting at live birds for sport do clay pigeon shooting (= shooting at clay discs fired into the air).Fishing, often called angling, is a very popular sport and there are many angling clubs. Three main types of angling take place: fly fishing, coarse fishing and sea fishing. Fly-fishing, which is expensive, is fishing for salmon, trout and other fish in fast-flowing rivers, using specially disguised hooks. Coarse fishing in rivers and lakes for fish other than salmon and trout, most of which are thrown back after being caught, is more widely popular. On the coast people may fish with a rod and line from a boat or from the shore.The US probably has more hunting organizations than any other country. This is mainly because of two strong traditions: the Constitution gives all Americans the right to own guns, and Americans have always hunted animals for food. The first Europeans who settled America hunted deer, bear, foxes, turkeys and ducks to survive, and many Americans still eat what they shoot. For these reasons, hunting is a sport for all classes and many people own hunting rifles. Americans do not use the name field sports. Instead they say outdoor sports or, because that can include camping, walking and boating, simply hunting and fishing. Bird hunting is often used instead of shooting, because that can also mean shooting at targets made of wood.Many other Americans are against hunting, but animal rights groups have little power against organizations like the National Rifle Association, which has more than 4 million members, and other politically active groups that support hunting and fishing. Conservation organizations like the Colorado Wildlife Coalition also use their influence to protect the rights of people to hunt and fish.The first US hunting club, the Gloucester Fox Hunting Club, was established in 1766 in Philadelphia. Fox-hunting now only takes place in a few eastern states where it is associated with the upper class and has little opposition. Americans generally hunt deer, elk (= a type of deer), bear, antelope, mountain lion, raccoon and wild birds. The US Fish and Wildlife Service is in charge of fishing and hunting laws. States have their own wildlife departments and sometimes both national and state permission is needed to hunt.Fishing is the most popular outdoor sport in America. Freshwater (= river) fish caught in the US include trout, bass and salmon. Saltwater (= sea) fish include flounder, mackerel, shark, snapper and tuna.
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: blood sport