Mildenhall farm Heath Hatcheries raided by Animal Liberation Front, releasing thousands of pheasants

By Dan Barker

Animal rights campaigners have released thousands of birds during a raid on a Mildenhall farm as part of its campaign to ‘dismantle the shooting industry farm by farm, shoot by shoot’.

Overnight between Friday and Saturday activists from the Animal Liberation Front cut their way into Heath Hatcheries, in Brandon Road.

Suffolk Police said internal fencing, netting and a water pipe was cut – allowing thousands of pheasants to escape.

Heath Hatcheries, Mildenhall (9077063)
Heath Hatcheries, Mildenhall (9077063)

The activist group claimed they had freed 9,000 birds from 45 pens in the farm.

A spokesman for the Animal Liberation Front said: “A clear path was made so that the birds headed towards the forest and away from the road, grain was put down to attract them in that direction.

“Once inside the farm we went straight to the battery cages which were inside a fenced off area, we could hear partridges but we could also see an expensive sensor based security system, we had to leave these partridges as we did not have the equipment with us to disable the alarm system.

Heath Hatcheries, Mildenhall (9077067)
Heath Hatcheries, Mildenhall (9077067)

“We surveyed the 45 breeding pens for pheasants, then removed a panel from each one of these pens, herded the pheasants out into the corridor then further on and out of the farm directly into a wooded area, each pen contained around 200 birds, making the total around 9,000.

“Shoots put in orders to game farms well in advance each year before the shooting season begins, with game farms being targeted across the country many shoots may well go out of business this year.

“We will continue to dismantle the shooting industry, farm by farm, shoot by shoot, until the end.”

Suffolk Police appealed for people with information about the raid to contact them on 101, quoting crime reference number 37/22245/19.

Heath Hatcheries has been approached for comment.