Sunday, May 25, 2008
By now probably everyone who has a television has seen the footage of the massive tornado that ripped through Oklahoma on Saturday, destroying three barns at a hog farm near the town of Lacey. If you missed the story, you can read the AP version here. If you are in to weather porn, check the raw video footage here.
I was skeptical of the claim on CNN last night that none of the animals were injured or killed in this twister (no humans were hurt--they took shelter in time in the farm's windowless office). There's still no solid evidence about what happened to all the pigs in this natural disaster, but there's a good article here in the Enid [Oklahoma] News and Eagle that mentions the risk of starvation or dehydration of the sows and piglets in the farrowing operation at the Seaboard Foods hog farm. It would certainly be ironic if the farrowing units condemned by animal rights advocates turned out to help save the animals in this instance, as the article implies.
The photo to the left of a sow and her piglets at the destroyed barn comes from the AP and was shot by Enid News and Eagle photographer Bonnie Vculek. Sadly, here is another photo (here) that clearly shows that some of the sows didn't make it. While the damage has been roughly quantified in the millions of dollars, I'll be surprised if we actually hear about the animals lost. We'll see, I suppose.