Animal Abuse Injustice and Defence Society Animal Aid investigate conditions at Atlow rabbit farm in Derbyshire, as public concern grows over planning applications.
Many people would be shocked to learn that rabbits were being farmed for their fur and flesh, confined for hours on end in tiny hutches, unable to freely access grass, on a site in the English countryside. Sadly, an investigation by Animal Aid has shown this to be the case in Atlow Derbyshire.
Investigators were saddened to see rabbits, who appear to have very limited room to move and display their natural behaviours, such as running, foraging, digging and playing. Our investigators never saw rabbits out of their hutches over multiple visits. The hutches containing these inquisitive and gentle animals appear too small for them to even be able to sit upright.
More alarmingly, T&S Nurseries, the company operating on this site, have applied for planning permission for two other sites – in Amersham, Bucks and near Lyndon in Rutland. A recent application in Cornwall was refused. National campaign group Animal Aid and many others, including local groups and individuals, strongly object to the proposals for these two intensive rabbit meat and fur farms. The female rabbits are treated as breeding machines, their babies, weaned and then removed and apparently killed at just 16 weeks old.
‘The very thought of confining female rabbits as breeding machines to have their young repeatedly taken from them is abhorrent.’ Says Tor Bailey, Animal Aid Campaign Manager. In captivity rabbits can live to be 10 years old.
Read more about the investigation here: https://www.animalaid.org.uk/stoprabbitfarms
Rabbits, the associated website, sells items such as hats and scarves made from ‘free-range’ rabbit fur. The fur is sold as a by-product to rabbit meat, exploiting a legal loop-hole. Animal Aid investigators were distressed to see rabbits in barren individual hutches, unable to socialise and with no free access to the outside. This is not what people imagine when told an animal’s life has been ‘free-range’. Rabbits who have very little exercise and are under-stimulated can be hugely damaged, both emotionally and physically. Some rabbits appeared listless and largely unresponsive to the presence of investigators - very concerning in a prey animal.
If you would like to oppose the farms at Rutland & Bucks please see here for more information
Object to the rabbit meat farm in Buckinghamshire here
Object to the rabbit meat farm in Rutland here