Linda Rosenthal wants to save the ducks of NYC. It’s not the first time that the UWS Assembly Member and has advocated for our furry or feathered friends.
She previously introduced a bill along with State Senator Michael Gianaris which aimed to ban the sale of dogs, cats, and rabbits in pet stores. She’s also spoken out against fur sales and manufacturing.
This time, it’s all about the ducks. According to local rescuers, deformed and defenseless ducks are often abandoned in city parks when school incubator projects conclude (h/t Patch.com).
Rescuers like Mary Beth Artz of Brooklyn head towards local parks for rescues of these abandoned ducks. Artz is one of about twelve wildlife rehabilitators from Brooklyn who finds, feeds, and cares for domestic ducks abandoned in New York City parks. People don’t realize how unlikely they are to live after domesticity.
Rosenthal’s recently proposed bill aims to prohibit school districts, school principals, administrators, and teachers from requiring, permitting, or conducting a lesson or experimental study using an animal in a hatching project.
This will amend current education law, and ban incubation projects or activities in all New York State schools.
Rosenthal justifies her ban. She argues that schools don’t have the proper resources to care for baby chicks during or after the incubation phase. Teachers use chick-hatching projects to teach their students about life cycles in the classroom.
But eggs often hatch on weekends when no one is around to care for the chicks. Which means they may go without food during the first two days of their lives. Additionally, over the weekend heat lamps turn off, causing chicks to die in their shells.
“Schools believe the projects will help students learn about biology”, said Rosenthal. “What they actually get is a lesson in cruelty. There are many more humane ways to teach young people about an animal’s lifecycle, and ones that don’t usually involve the animals death.”
Ducks that survive incubation face another problem in NYC: It’s illegal to keep a duck as a pet, so no one can provide them a home.
Until Rosenthal’s ban is passed, volunteer crews will continue to seek funding for duck rescues and caring for those that they can. You can read about Rosenthal’s plan to save the ducks here.
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