Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Hayom arbaa v'arbaim yom, shehaym shisha shavuot ushnay yamim baomer

It's not economical to let factory-farmed animals mate naturally, so in many cases, semen is taken from the males and forcefully inserted into the females. In some cases, animals have been genetically engineered to be so much bigger than they would be otherwise that intercourse would be harmful or even impossible. Check out one undercover worker's firsthand account of his day as a turkey breeder:

How to break a turkey hen: Grab a hen by the legs, near her feet. The hens weigh 20-30 pounds and are terrified—beating their wings and struggling in a panic. After all, they have been through this at least once a week before. The hens are very strong and hard to hold. Once you have a good grip, you flop her down chest-first on the edge of the pit with her tail end sticking up. You put your hand over her vent and tail and pull her rump and tail feathers upward. With the hand that's holding the feet, you pull downward—"breaking" the hen so that her rear is straight up and her vent is open.

DeWayne sticks his thumb right under the vent and pushes until the end of the oviduct is exposed. Into this, he inserts the straw/tube and pulls the trigger, and a shot of compressed air blows the semen solution from the straw and into the hen's oviduct. Then both men let go and the bird flops away onto the open end of the house floor.

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