TURKEYS IN AUSTRALIA
Sadly for young turkeys, Christmas is not a time of peace and good will.
Turkeys are very social and sensitive birds. Young turkeys in factory farms, never know their parents, they are hatched in incubators ,not under their mothers' warm wings They therefore miss out on learning from their mothers, upon whom, in nature, they are dependant. The chicks panic and shriek in distress. In commercial factory farms they are sexed, de-beaked and de-toed all without pain relief. They are de-toed to prevent them damaging each other in the frustration of confinement of factory farms, therefore downgrading their carcasses. They also have their snoods (the fleshy protuberance that hangs over their beaks) sliced off.
Mother turkeys are extremely maternal birds and will fiercely protect their babies normally. They are never given that opportunity, turkey mothers are breeding machines in this cruel industry.
Their parents can't mate naturally because they are too unnaturally heavy and clumsy. Instead the males are "milked" once or twice a week for semen and the females are artificially inseminated, which is very stressful for all the birds.Turkeys live out their short, 3 month lives, in filthy crowded sheds with thousands of other turkeys. These unsanitary sheds get more and more crowded as the turkeys grow. The floor litter is never cleared, so excrement builds up in the sheds. Turkeys skin and feet blister when they come in contact with the manure.Turkeys are bred to grow faster and to be much heavier than their ancestors. Because of their fast growth and excess weight, turkeys often have badly deformed legs and inflamed joints. Some of the young turkeys (called poults) are too lame to reach food and water.
Their huge weight also puts a lot of strain on their hearts, and the noxious smell of ammonia ,from their urine, causes lung problems.Even turkeys who lived free range, at three months of age, will be sent off to be slaughtered. They are grabbed by their legs, irrespective of the pain involved, stuffed into crates stacked on top of each other. This is very traumatic and cruel for large birds, as they are literally hardly able to breathe, because of their massive size.At the slaughterhouse they are hung upside down, which severely hurts their painful legs and is extremely frightening for the birds.
Their heads pass through an electrified water bath, as they are supposed to be unconscious when their throats are cut. Although, if they lift their heads at the wrong moment, they will miss the electrified water and won't be stunned. If their long wings touch the water bath instead of their heads they get painful electric shocks.Please enjoy a very happy and compassionate Christmas without harming turkeys.Look on the net or in library books for delicious non animal recipes to enjoy.