A pig named Boe was caught on camera not being able to get up and licking the floor in an attempt to get food and water. Picture: Still from a video from the Animal Liberation Queensland.
A pig named Boe was caught on camera not being able to get up and licking the floor in an attempt to get food and water. Picture: Still from a video from the Animal Liberation Queensland.

Video shows alleged abuse at pig farm

A PIG named Boe bites the metal bars in his tiny cage and kicks his legs as he frantically tries to get up, his flesh rotting away.

Other pigs, some unable to walk, are filmed with their tongues hanging out while stuck in pens so small they cannot even turn around.

The disturbing images are included in two videos released by Animal Liberation Queensland - allegedly filmed at a semen collection farm outside of Brisbane - that show what the members describe as an "unseen facet of pig farming" known as boar stalls.

The vision, obtained during a week-long investigation, shows the boars - including Boe who eventually died - in filthy conditions on property owned by the Department of Agriculture and Fisheries on Grindle Road in Wacol, not far from the RSPCA Wacol Animal Care campus.

A pig named Boe was caught on camera not being able to get up and licking the floor in an attempt to get food and water. Picture: Still from a video from the Animal Liberation Queensland.
A pig named Boe was caught on camera not being able to get up and licking the floor in an attempt to get food and water. Picture: Still from a video from the Animal Liberation Queensland.

 

Rotting flesh can be seen on this boar named Boe. He is one pig that was caught on film by an investigator with Animal Liberation Queensland recently. Picture: Still from a video from the Animal Liberation Queensland.
Rotting flesh can be seen on this boar named Boe. He is one pig that was caught on film by an investigator with Animal Liberation Queensland recently. Picture: Still from a video from the Animal Liberation Queensland.

Chay Neal, 36, executive director of Animal Liberation Queensland, said the footage was received from an anonymous source following a week-long investigation and passed along to the RSPCA and the Department of Agriculture and Fisheries in January.

He said the footage was released on social media this week after nothing appeared to have been done about the piggery.

"A cruelty complaint was lodged with authorities several weeks ago," he said.

"Despite this, the facility continues to operate and we are not aware of any charges being made."

The first video concentrates on Boe lying on his side in the pen, unable to stand.

It claims the anonymous investigators found the boar very thin and unable get up or to reach any water.

Boe, whose name is on a green ear tag, can be seen kicking his legs and biting the cage as he struggles in an attempt to stand, his tongue hanging out the side of his mouth.

He was also filmed licking the ground in what appears to be an attempt to obtain food or water.

A pig caught on film in cramped conditions at a Wacol property recently. Picture: Still from a video from the Animal Liberation Queensland.
A pig caught on film in cramped conditions at a Wacol property recently. Picture: Still from a video from the Animal Liberation Queensland.

Another pig can be seen lying motionless in the stall next to him, blood oozing from its head.

Captions in the video claim a constantly leaking water pipe above Boe's head led to his skin rotting.

The final images show Boe, with blood from cuts on his head, lying still before dying.

His carcass was one of a number shown dumped over a fence into a field and left to rot in the sun.

A Biosecurity Queensland spokesman said an investigation into a pig semen collection farm had been launched after the video footage was released.

He did not answer specific questions but said although the Grindle Road property was owned by the Department of Agriculture and Fisheries, the piggery was leased to an independent company.

"Biosecurity Queensland is currently investigating this issue under the Animal Care and Protection Act 2001," he said.

"While it is an active investigation, we cannot make further comment."

Unidentified parasites allegedly filmed in the shed underneath where the pigs lived in tiny stalls. Picture: Still from a video from the Animal Liberation Queensland.
Unidentified parasites allegedly filmed in the shed underneath where the pigs lived in tiny stalls. Picture: Still from a video from the Animal Liberation Queensland.

Both videos show a large sign saying Wacol Pig AB Centre, with the address matching that for Premier Pig Genetics.

No one from Premier Pig Genetics answered phones or returned multiple messages from the Courier Mail.

Some of the images in the second video showed a number of thin boars, including some that were unable to walk, a few motionless and with their tongues hanging out of their mouth.

It was claimed the company vet did not treat any of the injuries sustained by the pigs, with the footage showing blood, cuts and rotten skin on some of the animals.

The Animal Liberation Queensland video claims the pigs are only fed once a day, with food thrown on the floor and water often left empty.

One pig can be seen trying to unsuccessfully climb on top of the cage when it knew food was coming, while a worker can be seen kicking some pigs who appeared to be trying to escape the narrow pens.

Unidentified maggot-looking creatures and cockroaches appear in the second video and were said to be found underneath the floorboards where the pig's waste falls, while used syringes were left lying around and on a dirty, messy shelf.

Mr Neal said only a few boars were briefly let out a couple of times a week to collect semen, but were otherwise left in the cramped pens where they showed signs of boredom and distress.

"The second clip, showing the full investigation … shows mistreatment of boars by workers, kicking and masturbating the boars, lack of food and water, untreated wounds, dead bodies dragged out the back of the shed, and the filthy shed they live their lives in," he said.

The dirty pigs and tiny stalls in the videos are a direct contrast to four photos on the home page of the Premier Pet Genetics web site, which depict clean, healthy pigs eating in large, open individual pens.

One of four photos on the Premier Pig Genetics web site that show clean, healthy pigs in spacious pens. This one is named Caminda Boe, but it is not known if it is the same Boe or not featured in a video released by Animal Liberation Queensland. Picture: premierpig.com.au
One of four photos on the Premier Pig Genetics web site that show clean, healthy pigs in spacious pens. This one is named Caminda Boe, but it is not known if it is the same Boe or not featured in a video released by Animal Liberation Queensland. Picture: premierpig.com.au

 

One of four photos on the Premier Pig Genetics web site that show clean, healthy pigs in spacious pens. Picture: premierpig.com.au
One of four photos on the Premier Pig Genetics web site that show clean, healthy pigs in spacious pens. Picture: premierpig.com.au

The video of Boe has been viewed by more than 500,000 people, with thousands expressing outrage via social media.

Mr Neal and the ALQ is calling on members of the public to contact Department of Agriculture and Fisheries Minister Mark Furner to shut down the piggery and to call for an independent office for animal welfare to avoid conflict of interest with government-owned properties, similar to actions taken within the greyhound industry.

"The government needs to take a serious look at the conflict of interest that exists with the Department of Agriculture policing this industry, yet it is also responsible for the commercial growth of the industry," he said.

He said the group hoped to see the Wacol farm shut down and people associated with it investigated for animal cruelty.

"If they're not going to act on this, if this animal cruelty goes unchecked, what faith do we have any animal welfare issues in the farming sector would be taken seriously?" he said.

RSPCA Queensland spokesman, Michael Beatty, said the all complaints relating to commercial livestock was under the jurisdiction of the Department of Agriculture and Fisheries.

"We have been monitoring this particular complaint through DAF," he said.

"We are aware that biosecurity officers attended the facility with a veterinarian and other biosecurity representatives."

Mr Beatty said he was informed immediate welfare concerns were dealt with the day the video footage was received, but could not expand on any actions taken.

"As this is not an RSPCA investigation, we cannot provide you with any further information about this case," he said.

Artificial insemination is often used for breeding in the animal industry, as it is more profitable and efficient than natural breeding.



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