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TO FREEDOM BORN: Pregnant pig that escaped factory farm to give birth is ‘not out of the woods’


The pig and her babies have since been removed from the woodland by the farm owned by Wold Farms Breeding. Brinsley Animal Rescue has been in contact with the farm but hasn't managed to get them to release the pigs yet.

CAROLINE LOWBRIDGE: Anna Aston, the dog walker who found Matilda, said she was confused when she first came across the pigs in the woods… “I knew they weren’t wild boar; they just looked like ordinary pigs,” she said. “I was thinking, ‘This isn’t right’. You just don’t get them in a wood”. She contacted Brinsley Animal Rescue, which offered to help and has found a prospective home for the pigs at a Midlands animal sanctuary. “Wherever she has come from, she deserves a safe and happy life with her little family,” said Mrs Aston. “I think she has earned her freedom now.”

Jon Beresford, who runs the charity, said he would need permission from the farmer to remove the pig or it could be regarded as theft. He believes she has 10 piglets and has dubbed the family the “Ollerton 11” after the Tamworth Two – a pair of pigs that escaped while being unloaded from a lorry at an abattoir. He believes Matilda escaped to protect her piglets. “It’s almost like her maternal instincts are like ‘I want to get out of here and have my babies’ and she has broken out,” he said. The charity has set up a petition to support the rescue.

Louise Smith, a volunteer for the charity, has been to check on the pigs and feed the mother. “She has a ring through her nose which meant she was unable to forage for food herself,” said Miss Smith. “We left food for her to eat but she only seemed interested in caring for her young. “We are really hopeful the farmer allows us to commence the rescue and get Matilda and her family to a sanctuary where they can live out the rest of their natural lives”. SOURCE…

ED BROWNE: The pig and her babies have since been removed from the woodland by the farm, owned by Wold Farms Breeding Ltd, the BBC reported. Newsweek was unable to contact Wold Farms Breeding Ltd. Newsweek has contacted Cranswick PLC, a company associated with Wold Farms Breeding Ltd., for comment.

Brinsley Animal Rescue said the farm is a supplier of Marks and Spencer, a British retailer that sells food. Efforts to liberate the pig—nicknamed Matilda by charity workers—are ongoing. A local animal sanctuary has set up stable space with food and bedding so the animals have a future home.

Jon Beresford from Brinsley Animal Rescue told the BBC he has been in contact with the farm but hasn’t managed to get them to release the pigs yet. He said: “Matilda’s maternal instinct has driven her to escape from a commercial farm. “We haven’t rescued them yet but we hope the company will have some compassion and allow us to”…

Thousands of people have signed a petition in support of the efforts. The petition, dubbing the pigs the “Ollerton 11” after the town in which they were found, reads: “Pigs would naturally live for 15-20 years, but are generally slaughtered at around 6 months old, unless kept for breeding. “Pigs are extremely intelligent, one of the most intelligent species on Eart… they love to run, frolic and even wag their tails when they are happy and full of joy, just like a dog would.”

A 2015 research article into pig intelligence states that “while relatively little is known about the psychology of domestic pigs, what is known suggests that pigs are cognitively complex and share many traits with animals whom we consider intelligent.” It was co-authored by Lori Marino, a neuroscientist who has published work on self-awareness in non-human animals, and published in the International Journal of Comparative Psychology.

The case recalls that of the Tamworth Two, a couple of pig siblings who escaped from a U.K. slaughterhouse in 1998 and were ultimately saved following media pressure. The case caused a sensation in the country as the pigs spent a week on the run, rooting through gardens. They were eventually bought off of their former owner by the Daily Mail newspaper before being sent to the Rare Breeds Center in Kent, where they lived for more than ten years. SOURCE…


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