METHUEN, Mass. (WHDH) – MSPCA officials say that more than 200 of the 432 birds rescued by police from an illegal Northhampton cockfighting ring in May have been placed in permanent, safe homes.
More than 50 bird sanctuaries volunteered to take in some of the birds being held at the MSPCA Nevins Farm shelter.
The Vine Sanctuary in Springfield, Vermont and the Tomten Farm and Sanctuary in Haverhill, New Hampshire are now collectively home to 147 roosters, hens, and chicks. An additional 63 birds have been rescued by private adopters.
“At the end of the day, these birds are not appropriate pets for most homes,” MSPCA equine and farm animal manager Elizabeth Monteith said in a statement. “We couldn’t have imagined as the start of this that we would find suitable living spaces for any of them, let alone more than 200.”
Farm staffers had to euthanize 193 roosters due to their aggressive behavior and attacks toward rescuers and peers.
“It’s extremely difficult for us to euthanize these birds but we take solace in knowing that we saved them from deplorable conditions and a brutal death at the hands of their abusers, and we’re so happy we found options for over 200 thanks to some great animal welfare organizations,” Monteith said.
About 30 hens and a dozen chicks are still enjoying the balls, toys, perches, kale, and blueberries provided at Nevins Farm while they await adoption.
Monteith said, “This was one of the hardest cases we’ve ever dealt with and not just because the number of animals was so high.”
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