Feb 1, 2021

Hay Day at the Sanctuary

Gemini, Mooton, and Splash
Gemini, Mooton, and Splash

Hello, Happy February, and thank you again for helping to feed the animals at VINE Sanctuary!

I say "Happy February!" because we're all very relieved to be done with January, which is typically our most difficult month at the sanctuary. Of course, winter isn't anywhere near over -- we've got another snowstorm rolling in as I write this -- but the arrival of February always allows us to begin to see the possibility of spring.

All of the winter months are our most costly for food, because the pastures and foraging yards are covered in ice and snow. That makes every day "hay day" for the cows, goats, sheep, and alpacas who don't have grass to graze right now. The chickens, ducks, geese, turkeys, and other birds also eat more bought-in seeds, grains, and pellets, both because they also cannot forage and because they need to take in more calories during colder weather.

This year, all of that has been complicated by a drought, which led hay to be in short supply in our region. Luckily, we have secured access to enough to get us through until spring, but we had to pay a steep premium for much of it. So, you can trust me when I say that we are VERY grateful to you and other donors who have helped to cover the costs of keeping 700+ animals well-fed!

700+? Yup. I've attached our 2020 Year in Review, just in case you haven't seen it yet. We closed out the year with more than 700 nonhuman community members in residence, having organized or participated in more than 200 educational events. All of those events were rooted in the day-to-day relationships with and among animals at the sanctuary. By helping to nourish those relationships, you make all of our work possible.

If you haven't yet done so, I hope you will tune in to one of our live virtual tours, which will be happening every Saturday at noon EST/9AM PST on Facebook. We also offer one-time virtual "field trips" to classes as well as a series of humane education lessons. Write to our Humane Education coordinator, Anna, if you are a teacher or parent who would like to arrange for a class to visit VINE or sign up for monthly lessons.

Thank you again, and here's hoping for a happy and healthy 2021!

Sincerely,

pattrice

Syrah and Sugar
Syrah and Sugar

Links:


Attachments:
Jan 28, 2021

Cock-a-Doodle-Doo!

Happy New Year!
Happy New Year!

Hello, Happy New Year, and thank you again for your support of The Rooster Project!

Let me tell you about some of the roosters who have joined our community since our last report:

Most recently, one of our local supporters, who often brings a disabled youth in her care to volunteer at the sanctuary, happened upon a rooster standing on a rural road on a morning when the wind chill was -5F. After ascertaining that he was not a companion of any of the people living on the road, she called us.

Even though there were already 86 roosters in residence, with more on the way, of course we said to bring him here and we would find a way to integrate him into one of the flocks. In addition to shivering from the cold, he was extremely skinny, so we suspect that someone dumped him in the woods (a common fate for unwanted roosters).

He's very friendly, and so we have high hopes of an easy integration, after he has spent some time in the infirmary regaining lost weight and recovering from his brush with hypothermia. Rachel calls him "Speedy" because he is super-fast.

The red rooster we are calling Vinny also was found on a rural road. He had what seemed to be a broken leg, so his rescuer brought him to the local wildlife rehabilitation center, which is called VINS (we often get each other's phone calls due to the similarity of our acronyms). They gave him pain meds and arranged for one of their staff members to bring him to us. We were very happy with them for that, and so his name reflects their role in his rescue.

Vinny is super sweet and is already a staff favorite. He did have a fracture, which is now splinted, and he will stay in the infirmary until it heals. Everyone likes chattng with him while working in that area: If you talk to him, he always replies!

We're now awaiting four young roosters who had been companions of an elder woman fleeing domestic violence. Integrating new roosters into our flocks is always most difficult in winter, because the ice and snow sharply decreases the amount of room roosters have to range and space is the best peace-keeper, but of course we said yes in that situation. So often, women feel trapped in domestic violence relationships because they do not dare leave animals behind with the abuser but are unable to bring them to shelters or other supported housing.

I hope you've enjoyed "meeting" some of the newest roosters to join our community. If you missed our overall annual Activity Report for 2020, I've attached that here. We feel proud of what we managed to do in the midst of the pandemic and other crises, and we know that we could not possibly have done any of it without the help of supporters like you.

So, thank you again!

Sincerely,

pattrice

PS -- Follow us on social media to "meet" more roosters! And, if you haven't yet done so, tune into one of our virtual tours to see the sanctuary!

Speedy, upon arrival
Speedy, upon arrival
Virtual Tour Info
Virtual Tour Info

Links:


Attachments:
Oct 5, 2020

Roosters, Roosters, Roosters

Double and Trouble
Double and Trouble

Greetings and thank you again for supporting the Rooster Project!

As a supporter of the project, you know that there are always more roosters in need of refuge than there are spaces at sanctuaries. I am sorry to report that, due to the coronavirus pandemic, that problem has escalated. Many people decided to begin keeping backyard chickens while on lockdown and now, predictably, many of the chicks they bought this spring are turning out to be roosters.

Over the past few months, the number of calls and messages we receive about roosters has increased five-fold, and many other sanctuaries report the same. In response, we have exercised extreme creativity to—somehow—increase the number of roosters we are able to accommodate. Photos of a few of the newcomers are attached to this report.

We’ve also helped other sanctuaries figure out how to safely increase their rooster populations and have facilitated the creation of a couple of new microsanctuaries. Microsanctuaries are private homes in which vegans have created space to offer refuge to a low number of animals. If you think that you might be able to offer refuge to one or more roosters yourself, please do reach out to us and we will assist you!

As we do every year, we also participated in the rescue of chickens, including roosters, from Kapporos last month. One of our staff members helped with planning and with triage for rescued birds. We welcomed more than 30 rescued birds ourselves and also transported birds to two small sanctuaries in our region. Since the big white birds used in the Kapporos ritual are the same kind of chicken as our very first rescue more than 20 years ago, we have an especial dedication to them.

Speaking of our 20th anniversary this year, we are holding a virtual gala that will include many features open to all, whether or not they buy a ticket to the event. Just visit our Facebook page on October 10 to tune in for the fun — we all need some these days!

In closing, I want to remind you that we are offering regular livestreams, during which it is possible to virtually visit with roosters and other sanctuary residents, on Facebook and Instagram. (The Facebook videos are archived, so you can view them even if you miss the livestream.) Many people find that tuning into these virtual tours is a welcome respite from the stresses of life at this perilous moment, and we are happy to offer those moments of refuge to you.

Thanks again, and I hope to “see” you at the gala or during one of our livestreams soon!

Crackle, Snap, and Pop
Crackle, Snap, and Pop

Links:

 
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