RSPCA not ‘extreme’

The RSPCA has emphasised its defence of animal welfare, not rights, after allegations of extremism by farm organisations.

Concerns were raised by over 300 delegates at the annual New South Wales Farmers Association conference over the RSPCA’s role in monitoring livestock across the state.

The delegates passed a motion urging that the special-constable-status of the RSPCA be removed in regard to commercial livestock.

We flatly reject any suggestion the RSPCA NSW is biased or using our brand to drive an agenda…we are not an animal rights organisation,” RSPCA NSW CEO Steve Coleman said.

RSPCA Inspectors enforce existing animal protection legislation on behalf of the NSW state government.”

Separately to the inspecting role, the RSPCA works to promote uptake of husbandry and management practices, Coleman said. Continue reading RSPCA not ‘extreme’

Kiwi Post July 2011

We arrived at a dairy farm the other day to find out just how much of a shambles dairy farming currently is in New Zealand. Of course, we all know things are changing fast, but none of us ever guessed it could slump so low.

There were three of us, on farm at 4AM, to pregnancy scan and record an 800 cow herd. We pulled most of the gear out of the car, got set up, and went back to the car to find we had managed to somehow lock it with our car keys and –most distressing of all- all our phones inside.

No problem, we had most of our gear and could carry on scanning while someone broke into it and unlocked it. Plenty of half-employed drongos on a dairy farm to do this in five minutes. So we started up scanning.

But modern dairy farms have changed. And, when it comes to a bit of breaking and entry, not for the better. Nobody employs drongos anymore. These days on Kiwi dairy farms the vast majority of staff are likely to be from overseas and have a tertiary degree. So, if they’re not from Europe with a science degree, they’re from the Phillipines with a veterinary degree, or Asia with an agricultural degree.

So, a little over 3 hours later when we came to wash up we found that nobody had broken into our car because nobody had any idea how to. Worst still, even if they could, it would be simply unthinkable for them to carry out such a wanton act of crime. On the farm that day, including us, were 8 people from 7 nationalities with at least 9 degrees amongst us, and not a single Kiwi. Continue reading Kiwi Post July 2011