Over 100 roosters are being treated in the aftermath of a cockfighting bust this past weekend in Marlboro County. But the shelter warns it may have to euthanize many of the birds if they are not adopted soon.
Carolina Waterfowl Rescue (CWR), a nonprofit organization based in Indian Trail, North Carolina, says it is treating 117 roosters that were rescued following a raid by law enforcement in Wallace on Saturday night. The organization said roosters had many injuries including stab wounds to the chest, concussions, broken legs, and broken ribs.
27 people from both North and South Carolina were charged with cockfighting after the incident. Some individuals also face counts for possession of illegal drugs such as marijuana and cocaine. In South Carolina cockfighting is a misdemeanor punishable by a fine of up to $1,000 and/or up to a year in jail.
Although 122 roosters were seized during the raid, five had died by Sunday morning due to severe injuries according to the organization’s spokeswoman, Kara Lopp. Lopp said CWR has federally-certified rehabbers that that can set broken bones, provide antibiotics, and stitch wounds. The rehabbers can also give IV fluids to hydrate the roosters.
Lopp said the clinic has seen some early success with adoptions. As of Monday, 50 roosters were adopted or transferred to other sanctuaries and rescues. “We’re networking with other animal sanctuaries and rescues throughout the Carolinas… to try and take some of the birds,” she told South Carolina Radio Network. “Of course, individual families would be able to adopt them.”
But there is only a small window for the anyone to adopt the birds either temporarily or permanently. Lopp said any roosters that remain after Friday, April 10 will be euthanized because the organization does not have room to keep them.
“We certainly don’t want to that,” she said. “That’s not our typical business practice. But we just don’t have the room at the rescue for the roosters.”
Two hens were founds with eggs that were nearly finished incubating at the time of the raid. Two baby chicks have since hatched, Lopp said. “It’s kind of just a great reminder of spring and new life, so that’s something good that’s come out of this.”
The rescue is also treating a duck that was rescued during the bust. Several dogs were also rescued, but they are being treated by the Humane Society of Marlboro County.
Carolina Waterfowl Rescue was among several agencies directly involved in Saturday’s bust.
Jeremy Urso filed this report