Cruelty: Wealthy guests spent weekend blasting shotguns at live pigeons tossed out of boxes

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In Okeechobee, Florida, sources from humane animal organization, Animal Wellness Action claim at least 15,000 pigeons were shot at a “Swamp Shoot-Out” at the Quail Creek Hunting Ranch this past weekend. The live birds were used in a competitive event.

The shooting site is owned by Troy Link, the CEO of Jack Link’s Meat Snacks, whose net worth is estimated to be in the hundreds of millions.

Posted on social media:

It is estimated that Link and his wealthy but morally bankrupt friends will slaughter some 15,000 pigeons this weekend at five shooting rings. Boys are hired to load and retrieve the pigeons, and as is the case at all pigeon shoots, these sick young people will brutalize many of them out of boredom and sheer sadism. Many wounded animals will be left to suffer in the surrounding brush.

Animal Wellness Action Facebook

Live pigeon shoots are outlawed in many states, and SHARK (Showing Animals Respect and Kindness) believe this violates Florida’s anti-cruelty laws. The organization has obtained video of the mass killing where live pigeons were launched into the air from spring-loaded boxes and shot as they tried to fly away out of the boxes. Most of the birds barely were able to flutter a few feet into the air before they were blasted from a shotgun. They then fell onto the shooting field where runners hurried out to wring the necks of the birds still alive.

Advocates are calling for an investigation into the inhumane conduct. Pigeons used in these shooting events are typically captured from urban areas and transported in overcrowded and inhumane conditions without water or food. They are kept imprisoned in the boxes until shooters are ready and then spring released and ejected. At times, electric shocking is also employed. Shooters stand about 30 yards away and fire as the pigeons try to fly away.

The birds that were able to fly out of the range of the field were not retrieved and were left to suffer and die painful and inhumane deaths.

Eagles and other predatory birds then go after the remaining pigeons and often are poisoned by the lead shot used by the shooters.

Check out the flyer for the event here:

Controversy Surrounds Pigeon Shoots:

Pigeon shoots, where live pigeons are released and then shot by participants, have been a source of controversy for many years. Proponents argue that it’s a form of pest control and a legitimate sporting activity, while opponents raise ethical concerns about animal cruelty and the unnecessary infliction of suffering on living creatures.

Ethical Arguments Against Pigeon Shoots:

  • Animal Cruelty: Critics argue that forcing pigeons into a situation where they are released solely to be shot is cruel and inhumane. They believe that pigeons experience fear and distress when they are released and shot at.
  • Unnecessary Suffering: Opponents contend that there are more humane and effective ways to control pigeon populations, such as trapping and relocation or population management programs. They argue that pigeon shoots are not necessary and only cause unnecessary suffering to the animals.
  • Ethical Considerations: Many people believe that it’s wrong to inflict suffering on animals for entertainment or sport. They argue that we have a moral responsibility to treat animals with respect and compassion.

Wayne Pacelle, president of Animal Wellness Action, has campaigned against pigeon shoots in Pennsylvania.

If this isn’t staged animal cruelty, I don’t know what is.

W. Pacelle

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