From Eggs To Landfills: Live Chickens At The Dump?

WISCONSIN - Liz and Garrett Perry were dropping off scrap lumber and old shingles from a garage roofing project at the Deer Track Park landfill when they saw what appeared to be a bloody chicken darting between the big trash bearing rigs roaring through the massive dump just off of Interstate 94 near Johnson Creek.
calendar icon 8 August 2007
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Rescued white chicken held by Liz Perry

It was a hot, windy day in May and Liz Perry remembers being eager to leave the bleak moonscape of the landfill, where debris and dump dust blew in her eyes and mouth.

"It's pretty nasty in there, with the smell and the noise and everything," Perry said. "So I just shouted, 'Garrett, we have to catch that poor chicken!'"

They jumped out of their pick-up truck, whipped off the brightly colored vests the landfill requires visitors to wear and began using the blaze yellow garments as impromptu nets to capture the frightened bird.

"Once we caught her, we realized she wasn't really bloody but just horribly sunburned because she was missing so many feathers," Perry explained. As the Perrys pulled out of Deer Track Park, Garrett asked a worker why there were live chickens in the landfill.

He was told that large egg farms dump hen carcasses and that occasionally these loads contained live chickens that apparently had survived the gassing process that was supposed to euthanize them.

"She didn't seem particularly surprised," Liz Perry said.

When Garrett asked what commonly happens to these leftover survivors, he was told they were run over by trucks.

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