Update #41 ·
Kp

27 Ocean Breeze turkeys relocated to upstate N.Y. animal sanctuary

By Virginia N. Sherry | [email protected] Staten Island Advance   

STATEN ISLAND, N.Y. -- The plan is to relocate 100 turkeys from the grounds of South Beach Psychiatric Center in Ocean Breeze, and Phase 1 was carried out Monday, with a group of 27 birds transported to a sanctuary in Catskill, N.Y., by the Wildlife Services and Animal Care division of the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). Relocation of the turkeys is no simple exercise. It involves the state Office of Mental Health (OMH), which oversees South Beach Psychiatric Center, the state Department of Environmental Conservation, which issues the required permits to remove the turkeys, and the USDA, which does the round-up and transportation. The Humane Society of the United States has played a critical role, facilitating coordination among the various agencies and advocates, and locating a sanctuary for the birds that complies with DEC requirements. "We are pleased to be working on non-lethal solutions," said Brian Shapiro, New York State director of the Humane Society of the United States. The turkeys were transported Monday to the And-Hof Animals sanctuary in Catskill, N.Y. The sanctuary defines its mission as "to rescue farm animals from cruelty and neglect and to provide them with a caring, nurturing home, where they can be rehabilitated and recover from their past."  In addition to saving animals' lives, the sanctuary is also "committed to raise public awareness of animal abuse and the institutionalized brutality for their commercial exploitation," it states. OFF-CAMPUS TURKEYS REMAIN A PROBLEM View full sizeTurkeys gathered on a snow-covered lawn on Burgher Avenue in Dongan Hills. Jan. 28, 2014. (Staten Island Advance/Hilton Flores)  Shapiro, the Humane Society official, noted that the relocation plan involves only 100 turkeys on the campus of South Beach Psychiatric Center, and not toms and hens that have plagued nearby Dongan Hills residents for years, from roosting on trees and digging up lawns and gardens to blocking traffic and creating a mess from copious droppings. Turkeys roaming neighborhood streets present "a challenge," said Shapiro. "There are no easy solutions." Emphasizing that the turkeys are wildlife, he urged that fans of the birds not feed them. "Strong public education is needed -- human intervention boosts the turkey population artificially," Shapiro commented.

The sanctuary defines its mission as "to rescue farm animals from cruelty and neglect and to provide them with a caring, nurturing home, where they can be rehabilitated and recover from their past."  

In addition to saving animals' lives, the sanctuary is also "committed to raise public awareness of animal abuse and the institutionalized brutality for their commercial exploitation," it states.


OFF-CAMPUS TURKEYS REMAIN A PROBLEM

Shapiro, the Humane Society official, noted that the relocation plan involves only 100 turkeys on the campus of South Beach Psychiatric Center, and not toms and hens that have plagued nearby Dongan Hills residents for years, from roosting on trees and digging up lawns and gardens to blocking traffic and creating a mess from copious droppings. Turkeys roaming neighborhood streets present "a challenge," said Shapiro. "There are no easy solutions." Emphasizing that the turkeys are wildlife, he urged that fans of the birds not feed them. "Strong public education is needed -- human intervention boosts the turkey population artificially," Shapiro commented.

Campaign closed

There was no transparency or public discussion about the killing of our turkeys either because the powers that be know is wrong and know that the public would object.  These turkeys are companions to many, attract tourists and even have helped people meet & bond with one another.  I have so many happy memories of our turkeys.  They were a real comfort & joy.  Also a learning…

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