Target: Jill Ravitch, Sonoma County District Attorney
Goal: Save hundreds of thousands of ducks from severe cruelty and neglect
Animal rights group Mercy For Animals (MFA) recently revealed the results of an undercover investigation at Reichardt Duck Farm in California, one of the largest duck factory farms in the U.S. Hidden camera footage showed a staggering amount of abuse and neglect. Local authorities, however, considered the findings not in violation of any laws. This is an appalling indictment of the current welfare laws for factory duck farming and must be changed immediately.
The MFA’s video shows that many of the birds at Reichardt Duck Farm are suffering from illness and injuries without receiving proper veterinary care. They can also be seen trapped under wire cage flooring where they are left to suffer die. They were still conscious while having their throats slit. MFA presented the footage to the Sonoma County Sheriff’s Office, who investigated the farm. Their opinion of the circumstances was that everything appeared to be “in compliance with industry standards.”
Reichardt Duck Farm maintains an average of 200,000 ducks at a time and processes around one million birds per year. A member of MFA was hired at the farm as a barn cleaner for two months and filmed the conditions she observed when unsupervised. She stated that during her time as an employee she made numerous attempts to alert the management of cruelty and neglect she witnessed every day, but they were indifferent. MFA’s executive director, Nathan Runkle, issued a statement saying, “From the day they hatch until they are violently killed at the slaughterhouse, the short lives of these ducks are filled with misery and deprivation. We are calling on the District Attorney to hold the owners of Reichardt Duck Farm criminally accountable for allowing this culture of cruelty and neglect to fester at its factory farm facility.”
California-based veterinarian and animal welfare expert Dr. Armaiti May also reviewed the footage and provided her professional opinion on the matter: “I was very alarmed to witness severe neglect and cruelty inflicted on ducks at this facility. No responsible facility could allow such blatant animal cruelty and neglect. Birds experience pain and suffering in a very similar way to humans and other mammals. Their suffering must be taken seriously. The treatment of the ducks at this facility is completely unacceptable.”
This must be stopped immediately. Cruelty and neglect cannot be considered the “industry standard.” Please sign the petition below and demand that Reichardt Duck Farm is held accountable for the blatant inhumane treatment of their birds.
Dear District Attorney Ravitch,
The animal welfare group Mercy for Animals recently revealed a video taken while one of its members was employed at Reichardt Duck Farm, revealing horrifying footage of ducks being abused and neglected. Many were suffering from illness and injury, left under the wire floor to die, or had their throats slit while they were still alive. The Sheriff’s Office conducted their own investigation but did nothing, considering what they found to be in accordance with “industry standards.”
If this is what is considered the industry standard in California then the regulations for duck farming must be changed immediately. Please hold Reichardt Duck Farm accountable for their blatant cruelty and help guide California toward stronger welfare laws that offer protection to ducks in factory farms.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: schtumple via Flickr