Almost a year after our initial efforts to rescue over 160 ducks, geese, turkeys and chickens that were living with a hoarder in appalling conditions, we were finally able to bring them to safety. They are now enjoying sunshine on their feathers, water to swim in, clean bedding, warmth, grass under their feet and room to roam for the very first time. Initially, we tried working with their owner towards an amicable surrender, pleading with her to consider the quality of life for the birds and used many of our own resources to help provide a cleaner environment for them. The hoarder’s initial intentions were good and her love for the animals apparent, but she neglected to see how their overcrowding, over-breeding, lack of shelter and space and filthy conditions were hurting them. She also continued to buy chicks and ducklings online and mail ordered to her.Good intentions aren't good enough.
In the end, it took efforts by both us and the Ulster County SPCA, and then a judge’s seizure warrant to obtain the birds. Many were suffering from ailments caused specifically by their filthy living conditions. They lives in small sheds and animal carriers, overcrowded, living among layers of caked feces, and breathing in dust and the stench of ammonia. Due to inadequate housing, several of the birds did not have access to proper shelter and have lost toes and combs to frostbite. Inside her trailer we found another 25 birds running around freely and over 20 living in an enclosed back porch. The indoor quarters were worse than the outdoors. All the birds show signs of nutritional deficiencies.
We are treating all of their health issues by providing veterinary care, nutritional supplements, quality food and vitamins daily in their water. They are beginning to thrive with their new freedom.