Greetings from Oohmahnee...
Since our negotions with Buckeye Egg Farms top executives began last
week, we have been able to rescue approximately 1,500 laying hens
from the wreckage. After relocating the hens here, the REAL work now
Farm Sanctuary in New York is adopting 400 hens. Which means, we
still need to place at least 1,000 birds in loving, permanent homes.
Finding placement quickly will enable us to return to the scene and
rescue more birds. At the moment, we have an agreement with the
Director of Buckeye to come back and rescue more birds if resources
allow. It is VERY difficult to mobilize transportation for the birds
to their new homes, since we are running a large farmed animal rescue
and sanctuary operation. Hence, we need individuals who are willing
to travel to pick-up their birds, deliver birds to new homes, and
help out in other ways in finding homes in non-exploitive, long-term
environments. Call Cayce or Jason at (724) 925-2241 to help.
The press conference that we arranged for Monday at 6:00 PM went very
well, and surprisingly Buckeye allowed camera crews from ABC and the
AP to enter the premises and film. This allowed us to acquire
extensive footage of the suffering that these birds have been
experiencing, as well as their living conditions on factory farms.
We need funds! We need funds for fencing, veterinary care,
transportation, a barn, and many other expensive factors to care for
these individuals. Our address: Ooh-Mah-Nee Farm, Inc. RD 1, Box 409,
Hunker, PA 15639 - firstname.lastname@example.org. Volunteers and donations
are always welecome and greatly appreciated.
Thanks go to Bill Long, Amy, Molly, Nathan, Ritchie, the Pitt crew
(Friends of Animals, University of Pittsburgh), Oohmahnee officials,
Farm Sanctuary, and the many others for all of their generous
assistance and collaboration on this huge undertaking.
Update on Chicken Situation in Ohio
Date: Wed, 27 Sep 2000 13:02:22 -0400 (EDT)
The following post comes from Ritchie Laymon of POET in Columbus.
She can be reached at: email@example.com
First, let me thank everyone who responded to our call for help and
offer my apologies if you are getting these messages more than once
via duplicate lists.
Understandably, most people who live in the city have no place to
house barnyard animals. And those who live three states away from
Ohio are stymied by the transportation problem. The logistics are
It's late Monday night. I just got back from delivering some
survivors from the pullet operation to an activist in Marysville who
started her own farm animal sanctuary this summer.
Another caravan of trucks headed back to the sanctuary in
Pennsylvania tonight. (The same place that took in nearly 800 birds
Sunday night.) Thank you to Nathan Runkle of St. Paris, Oh and Molly
Fearing of Cable, Oh for volunteering to make the long drive to New
Stanton, Pa. Bill Long and Amie Hafner got back at 8:00 AM Monday and
reported that the barn for the hens in Pennsylvania is wonderful. The
hens are adapting beautifully which pretty much wrecks the argument
by poultry scientists that today's selectively bred hens are little
more than laying machines incapable of behavior exhibited by their
Here are some informational tidbits that may be helpful to those of
you who are deciding how best to participate in the rescue:
1. The birds have been without food and water for five full days. The
HSUS has told Buckeye Egg that, in some cases, birds can go for 21
days without food and water. So for those of you who thought you had
passed some time line for rescue, you haven't.
2. You must have permission to enter onto Buckeye Egg property. The
number to call is 740.893.7200. The persons to contact are Steve
Wagner and/or Bill Glass. They are top executives with the company
and have arranged for their employees to work overtime to aid with
the loading of the birds. The owner of Buckeye Egg, Anton Pohlmann,
is no where to be found. Feel free to say that Ritchie Laymon gave
you the contact. They are somewhat paranoid about activists calling
out of the blue. I'm the devil they know.
3. Buckeye Egg is located on Croton Road in Licking County very close
to the juncture of Routes 62 and 37. Look for Johnstown, Oh on the
map which is six miles away. The main office is unmarked, but is
located on Croton Road just passed Westley Chapel Road on one side
and several extremely large grain elevators on the same side as the
office. You must always check-in with the main office before
proceeding to the laying sites.
4. Farm Sanctuary in Watkins Glen, NY may know of someone in your
area who can provide a van or truck for the drive to Croton. You can
contact Lorri or Gene Bauston of Farm Sanctuary at 607.583.7376.
Please thank them for their efforts.
5. The birds Buckeye Egg is allowing us to rescue are robust. (The
nearly "spent" hens are being gassed.) However, having said that,
they may still harbor a common respiratory illness in factory-farmed
chickens that is transmissible to other birds but not to humans or
other animals. It is not a fatal bacteria, but if you are housing
these birds on a property with other chickens, the Buckeye birds
probably should be kept separate for two weeks, or one month to be
6. The birds should not be fed immediately after rescue. The most
important thing to do is hydrate them. After they've had water, then
allow them to eat chicken feed. The reverse could cause bloating and
7. For those who have no homes to offer, financial help is important
as well. Picking up the tab on a tank of gas could mean the
difference between a trip being made or scratched. Contact Farm
Sanctuary (above phone) to donate funds.
8. Calls to the sanctuary in Pennsylvania would be welcome and are
definitely in order. Please thank Cayce (pronounced K.C.), Jay, and
their newborn son Aidan, and their crew for traveling back and forth
to Ohio to rescue over 1500 birds, and for providing lifetime care
for Our Liberated Ladies. Their number is 724.755.2420.
In another note: Ohio's Director of Agriculture, Fred Dailey, is
holding a five-day conference in Columbus starting tomorrow to which
all 50 directors of Ag in the U.S. have been invited. Also in
attendance will be USDA chief Dan Glickman and representatives of
Bush and Gore. Governor Taft will give opening remarks. I plan to
attend this conference and corner as many ag directors as I can to
tell them of the situation in Ohio and beg them to stop the promotion
of CAFOs (confined animal feeding operations) in their states. Ohio
is in the process of passing legislation (SB 141 crafted by the Farm
Bureau and due to be voted out immediately after the November
elections) that will essentially be a welcome mat for more Buckeye
Eggs. Shame on our legislature!
Please call or e-mail if I have not adequately answered your
questions re the rescue.
Thank you for caring.
Date: Mon, 25 Sep 2000 16:02:49 -0400 (EDT)
1 MILLION CHICKENS WILL BE DELAYED CASUALTIES OF TORNADO
Please write letters to the editor. Include a simple message: to
prevent such tragedies in the future and to stop the suffering of
laying hens, there is one simple thing people can do - stop buying
Letters to the Editor
The Dispatch, 34 S. 3rd St.
See http://www.dispatch.com/letters_policy.html for info on how to
send a letter to the editor.
1 MILLION CHICKENS WILL BE DELAYED CASUALTIES OF TORNADO
Date: Friday, September 22, 2000
Byline: Mike Lafferty
Source: Dispatch Staff Reporter
HARTFORD, Ohio -- Trapped in cages in tornado-damaged laying houses,
more than 1 million chickens at Buckeye Egg Farm will be killed to
prevent them from starving to death.
"There's very little we can do,'' said Bruce Collen, chief financial
officer for the facility in northeast Licking County, about 30 miles
northeast of Columbus.
"There is substantial structural damage to the laying houses. It's
dangerous to be in there. We can't feed them.''
The chickens, mostly laying hens, are fed and watered by automatic
systems destroyed by the tornado that hit the area about 9 p.m.
Without water, the chickens might live five days. Without food, about
a week, Collen said.
He said that about a dozen Buckeye workers and as many as 50
volunteers from nearby Mennonite communities will try to save as many
chickens as they can today and Saturday.
Most of the chickens, however, will have to be destroyed, Collen
said, because they are trapped in 12 buildings too unsafe for workers
"Under state law, they need to be buried or burned or rendered,''
said Mark Anthony, a spokesman for the Ohio Department of
Agriculture. "I can't tell you in hours or days, but quickly.
"And the process has to be done humanely, too. These chickens are not
going to die of thirst.''
Fred L. Dailey, the agency's director, and Mike Gallaway, a
supervisor with the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency, met with
Collen at the facility yesterday.
"The buildings are a tangle of cages and birds and manure pits
below,'' Dailey said.
"This is going to be a herculean task.''
He said chickens that cannot be saved will be killed with gas and
taken to a rendering plant in Wapakoneta, in Auglaize County.
Gallaway said manure from the farm did not appear to have flowed into
There are 64 laying-hen buildings, 24 young-hen buildings and some
egg-processing facilities on the farm.
Each laying-hen building contains about 85,000 chickens.
Collen said that one worker was injured slightly inside a laying
house when the tornado hit.
"We consider ourselves lucky not to have serious injuries or loss of
life,'' he said.
Bill Glass, chief operating officer for the company, said the
buildings are about 600 feet long and 50 feet wide.
Eight buildings were destroyed at a complex off Wesley Chapel Road,
three buildings at a site off Croton Road and one building at a site
off Parsons Road.
Several more buildings were damaged during the storm, Collen said.
The tornado apparently hit in eastern Delaware County before entering
Licking County, where 14 homes were damaged near the egg farm.
The agriculture agency has contacted the United States Humane Society
and the U.S. Department of Agriculture for advice.
"The USDA went through this in a much larger scale in North Carolina
last summer (1999) with their back- to-back floods,'' Anthony said.
Caption: (1) Craig Holman / Dispatch
Above: An aerial view of Buckeye Egg Farm in Licking County shows the
extensive damage that Wednesday night's tornado caused to a number of
(2) Jeff Hinckley / Dispatch
Below: Chickens trapped in a laying house are exposed to the
elements. Officials say the danger is too great to allow people
inside the buildings to rescue the birds.
Urgent! Buckeye Egg Farm Hen Rescue
Date: Mon, 25 Sep 2000 15:50:45 -0400 (EDT)
The following report comes from Ritchie Laymon of POET in Columbus.
She can be reached at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Urgent help is needed if anyone can lend it!
Sunday 24 SEP 00 at 4:00 PM
Unless you've been locked in a sensory-deprivation tank, you probably
know that the twister that got Xenia, moved on to Buckeye Egg Farm
last Wednesday night and destroyed at least 12 barns that hold 85,000
to 90,000 hens each. Starting at 8:35 PM that night, over one million
birds were stranded without food and water. Since then, Buckeye has
started destroying the animals: gassing, then burning, then hauling
their carcasses away to a landfill in Wapakoneta. We know how
effective gassing is with pound dogs, so you can imagine how
haphazard and horrendous it must be with chickens.
Two of us went out there Thursday morning to inquire about rescuing
what we could manage to find homes for. We were put on hold until
local processors and farmers could get in to remove as many birds as
they could take, and until the killing machine could be put in place,
which has been done. It's hard to get figures, but it looks like
they've been destroying upwards of 25,000 birds per day. As of today,
Sunday, something like a quarter million birds are gone...one way or
Farm Sanctuary in Watkins Glen has offered to take 1000 birds and a
truck is coming in to collect the animals as soon as the go-ahead
comes from Buckeye Egg. The company is a reluctant participant in a
humane rescue because they just don't know how the p.r. will shake
out for them when animal lovers enter the mix. But they sense that
not to let the animals be rescued might be a bigger negative in the
press, than to allow the birds to go and risk the ensuing stories
about how awful these animal concentration camps are.
The other wrinkle in this rescue is the danger of barn roofs further
collapsing and injuring volunteers for which Buckeye would then be
held liable. There are plenty of barns where the roofs and walls are
missing altogether, but they seem to be killing those animals that
are sitting in battery cages in the open air. The management is now
trying to bring in cranes to remove those roofs that weren't already
blown off, so that rescuers can get access to the birds without fear
of being crushed.
****The rescue of one thousand hens could start as early as 6:00 PM
tonight. Or may be delayed until sometime Monday.****
Sunday 24 SEP 00 10:30 PM
Just got back from helping load over a thousand hens into a caravan
of trucks headed to Pennsylvania, the closest place Farm Sanctuary
can find to stash these many animals. Two POET members, Bill Long and
Amie Hafner are splitting the four-hour drive each way to deliver one
truckload of birds. The rest of the drivers are from a sanctuary in
Pennsylvania God bless'em all!
The situation out there is grotesque. HSUS recommended tenting the
broken barns and pumping-in gas, as opposed to throwing the birds in
a truck and gassing them there. Terminix came in today to try the
tent killing and it was a total flop. The barns are the size of
airplane hangars. They just couldn't manage such a huge undertaking.
That means the birds will just starve to death in their cages,
because the truck/gas method is too slow to get to the hundreds upon
hundreds of thousand animals before they dehydrate and starve.
If anyone has a relative who lives on a farm and can take a few of
these creatures, it would be welcomed by Buckeye Egg and those of us
who have seen the situation out there and can't sleep at night.
Not to get too anecdotal, but we had are own disaster when loading
the birds into the first truck. It was cold and rainy and we had left
the heat on. The birds who were wet and cold themselves piled into
one corner of the truck and the hens on the lowest level immediately
suffocated. We had to pull the living birds off the dead birds and
discard the dead birds. It was devastating. What were we? Their
saviors, or their tormentors? We then turned on the air conditioning,
which was completely counterintuitive, but it worked. These poor
creatures, who were at first terrified by the straw bedding we laid
out, soon started nesting and clucking. From factory robots, they
turned into "The Girls" and we fell in love with them.
They're out there. If anyone on this list can help chip away at this
huge catastrophe by saving just one innocent little life, we'll all
be the better for it.
Thanks for any help you can offer.
United Poultry Concerns. October 4, 2000
United Poultry Concerns, Inc.
PO Box 150
Machipongo, VA 23405-0150
(Action Alert - Help The Victims of Buckeye Egg Farm Disaster)