• Re: Black vultures are eating cows alive. Now some farmers can legally

    From Judith Latham@21:1/5 to All on Mon Jan 3 12:23:56 2022
    XPost: alt.birdwatching, alt.food.fast-food

    On Sat, 1 Jan 2022 13:23:50 -0500, Susan Cohen <thickirish@cunt.com>

    On 8/18/2021 3:21 PM, Leroy N. Soetoro wrote:
    https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2021/08/17/cows-black-vultures- >> killing-cows-farmers-indiana-farm-
    bureau/8162357002/?utm_source=taboola&utm_medium=exchange&utm_content=news >>
    SCOTTSBURG, Ind. — Sometimes as many as a dozen black vultures circle
    above John Hardin's fields in southern Indiana’s Scott County, poised for
    when they spot a cold, weak or vulnerable cow. Unlike their turkey vulture >> cousins, which are easy to spot with their red heads, black vultures don’t >> always wait for their meals to be dead.

    “The black vultures, now that's a very, very aggressive bird,” Hardin
    said. “They’re basically waiting for the cows and calves to die or trying
    to kill them.”

    Black vultures survive, like most vultures, by eating carrion, or the
    remains of dead animals. That can serve as an integral part of the
    ecosystem: eating diseased remains that could carry sickness and spread to >> other animals. But unlike Indiana’s turkey vultures, black vultures also
    go for living animals: calves, piglets, lambs and other small livestock
    are their preferred targets.

    Seemingly every day when Hardin walks out his door, he sees them. They
    often are perched on the roof ridge of his neighbor’s barn or settled on a >> nearby fence post — watching, waiting.

    It may sound ominous, Hardin said, and in a way, it is.

    The livestock farmer said he’s lost at least two but possibly up to four
    animals in the last few years because of black vultures.

    “When you’re in the animal husbandry business, one of the worst things you >> want is for an animal to die, especially the way vultures do it,” Hardin
    said. “Once they get a hold of them, they pick the calf’s nose off, pick
    around his mouth, face and navel. So then the calf can’t make it very long >> after that.”

    Hardin is among a growing list of farmers who are dealing with what many
    describe as a reign of terror brought on by black vultures. These birds,
    however, are protected under an international law that regulates the
    hunting of migratory birds. That fact has left livestock producers across
    the state with a limited set of tools for how to address these birds, and
    with varying levels of success.

    But the Indiana Farm Bureau is trying to give them another option. In
    early August, the insurance organization launched a new program in which
    livestock producers can apply for a permit to legally kill and remove a
    set number of black vultures from their property.

    This initiative is several years in the making, but the farm bureau hopes
    it will have a swift impact.

    “When the initial volley of calls came in from those producers, we tried
    to figure out how we could help them,” said Greg Slipher, Indiana Farm
    Bureau’s livestock specialist. “This gives them more control of what’s
    happening on their farm.”

    Vultures kill dozens of animals
    Slipher first heard of black vultures about five years ago when he got a
    call from his colleagues in Kentucky warning him: They’re coming.
    Seemingly overnight, black vultures started popping up everywhere on
    southern Indiana’s landscape, he said.

    “I got a heads up that these birds were coming my way,” he said, “and by
    golly they were right.”

    Black vultures have continued to expand north in recent decades across the >> Ohio River from their original territory in southern states. In the 1990s, >> there were so few black vultures in Indiana that groups dedicated to
    protecting migratory birds didn’t even have a clear estimate. Now, a
    recent study based on calculations from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service >> estimates upward of 17,000 black vultures in the state.

    As their numbers have grown, so, too, has the damage the black-headed
    birds have caused and the calls for assistance they’ve spurred. The Animal >> and Plant Health Inspection Service with USDA has received an average of
    8,639 technical assistance calls from participants in 2020 nationwide.

    That increase can mostly be attributed to producers who are looking for
    help on how to manage the vultures, Humberg said.

    Black vultures terrorize: Difficult to legally kill birds that are eating

    Still, the damage black vultures have caused is a little less easy to nail >> down — at least at the present. A multi-year study of black vultures being >> led by Purdue University is currently underway. One of its goals is to
    better understand how many farmers have been affected, how many animals
    have been lost and the resulting financial costs.

    A survey of only about 20 livestock producers found they lost 25 animals
    to black vultures in the last three years, including both adult cows and
    calves. A single cow can be worth more than $1,000, and for small
    producers, the loss of just one cow can be a major disruption to their

    Program to protect livestock from vultures
    According to outdoorlife.com, the black vulture reduction pilot program
    started in Kentucky and Tennessee, and includes Arkansas, Mississippi,
    Missouri, Oklahoma and Texas. The program allows farmers with vulture
    problems to obtain a depredation permit.

    The U.S. has migratory bird treaties with Canada and Mexico, as well as
    Japan and Russia. These laws were put in place to protect migratory birds, >> which often cross international borders, from over-hunting. Black vultures >> are protected under one of these treaties: The 1918 Migratory Bird Act.

    Under that law, it is illegal to maim or kill black vultures without a
    permit, which costs $100 in Indiana. Farmers can apply for one of these
    permits through the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, but they have found
    the process onerous and the cost a deterrent.

    “It becomes a convenience issue and a dollars issue,” Slipher said.

    Indiana drew inspiration from Kentucky, which pioneered this program
    several years ago. Since then, similar initiatives have popped up in
    Tennessee, and most recently in Missouri — all of which have worked well
    and had positive results, Slipher said. He hopes Indiana will see similar

    Indiana Farm Bureau is now taking on that part of the process for farmers. >> The organization applied for a permit from FWS, which it received in June. >> With that approval, the farm bureau is paying the permit cost and can
    award sub-permits to its members, for free, to lethally remove black

    “That’s going to be to our advantage,” Slipher added. “We have that
    relationship in place already and farmers will be more comfortable
    reaching out to work with us on it.”

    Their goal is to make things as straightforward as possible.

    There is no limit on the number of permits the organization can give out,
    but it is authorized to take only 500 vultures this year. Based on each
    individual producer’s needs, the farm bureau will set the number of
    vultures they can take, not to exceed five.

    Producers are excited about the program. In the first week since it
    launched, the farm bureau already received 24 applications, and Slipher
    expects that number to grow as the fall calving season approaches. He
    plans to issue the first permit this week.

    Hardin is one of the farmers who applied.

    “It’s going to be hard to eradicate them, but I hope it helps,” he said.
    “Everybody I know is on board, and I think there is a sense of hope.”

    After receiving a permit, producers must report the vultures that they
    remove and also ensure that they dispose of them properly. That can
    include burying the birds, but Slipher hopes farmers will do something
    else. He is encouraging them to preserve at least one of the birds and
    hang them on the property in effigy, which has been found to be an
    effective method for warding off more vultures.

    Humberg envisions this program becoming a mainstay, as long as it is

    “The vultures are here to stay, and we are going to have to find ways that >> we can all live together,” he said. “If that means some birds have to be
    lethally removed, hopefully we’re minimizing the number of birds we have
    to treat that way and the number of cattle lost.”

    Contributing: Sudiksha Kochi, USA TODAY

    Those things are almost as bad as jews, who by their very nature are
    just as predatory as vultures.

    Are you going to follow me to every group I post to? Get life!!!

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