New Evidence of Animal Cruelty in California Hatchery

In June I wrote about the Santa Cruz, California District attorney who refused to prosecute a case of animal cruelty at Cal-Cruz Hatcheries, Inc.  Despite graphic undercover video depicting live hatchlings being tossed down a disposal, birds mangled in machinery with limbs or heads torn off and some even skinned alive — Bob Lee, the Santa Cruz D.A. has refused to prosecute.

A Care2 petition was started, but more signatures are needed.

A Washington, D.C. based animal advocacy group, Compassion Over Killing (COK) has been trying for nearly two years to hold Cal-Cruz Hatcheries responsible.  COK is the group that did the undercover investigation.

Armed with the video last April, COK met with Santa Cruz Animal Services Authority (SCASA) and the district attorney’s office.  SCASA performed an investigation and sent a report to the district attorney recommending prosecution.  The D.A. declined.

California’s animal welfare laws – unlike most other states – do not differentiate between domestic pets and farm animals.  An act of cruelty is considered just as punishable whether it is perpetrated on a household dog or chickens raised for food.

There is a report of new evidence in this case.

In a conversation today with Kelly Luker — a California woman who runs a kennel for small dogs – I was informed she witnessed a Cal-Cruz Hatcheries, Inc. truck at the Buena Vista landfill dumping mounds and mounds of dead and ground up hatchlings last month.  She took photos with her cell phone camera and forwarded them to COK.

Will this new documentation be the impetus for prosecution?  Let’s hope so, but that is yet to be seen. 

Please contact Bob Lee, Santa Cruz District Attorney and let him know you want Cal-Cruz investigated and prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.

His phone number is 831-454-2400 and his email is

If you haven’t already, please consider signing the Care2 petition calling for prosecution of Cal-Cruz Hatcheries.

More Info:
Santa Cruz District Attorney Refuses to Prosecute Animal Cruelty
HSUS Uncovers Violations at Battery Factory Farm
HSUS Exposes Cruelty at Largest US Turkey Hatchery

Photo by Kelly Luker, used with permission. 


Martha Eberle
Martha Eberle7 years ago

If California already HAS a law that doesn't differentiate b/w domestic animals and farm animals for cruelty?, then HOW can the D.A. NOT prosecute? I'm confused. and this is abominable.

Patricia B.

Surprised with all this publicity that commercial customers of this place haven't taken action as well. Hope this company finally gets prosecuted.

Nathan M.
Nathan M.7 years ago

I used to hang out with that guys son. He was a jerk - he took me into the hatchery - we worked on dirt bikes in there - very dirty place... Ya that kid turned out to be an asshole - his father sure was - tried to pants me when i was 13 - creep...

Lynne B.
Lynne Buckley7 years ago

Appalling. The DA should get a heart and punish the greedy company to the fullest extent possible.

Teresa T.
7 years ago

Once again Cal-Cruz Hatcheries have been seen to be carrying out extreme cruelty to ducklings. Cal-Cruz is trading as a business to make money and the ducklings are a commodity to this end and their life and death is of no consequence to the owner. These ducklings have a life and death of hell at these hatcheries. Cal-Cruz should be fully investigated by the DA and prosecuted, otherwise the abuse and barbaric treatment of these poor ducklings will never cease. All creatures on this earth that we share with them deserve respect and compassion which is certainly non existent in Cal-Cruz Hatcheries.

Catalina McLoughlin

We need laws to protect those innocent animals, companies should pay for the miss treat of the animals with large fines that's no reason to abuse animals that way.

Claudia C.
Claudia Cavallo7 years ago

I really have no words for all this cruelty: I had seen last year the video and have still this cruelty in front of my eyes from time to time. Unfortunately I must discover that nothing has changed , still the same shame. Men can perform that worst of themselves.

Jennifer Martin
Jennifer M7 years ago

3% said no!! Go somewhere else with that crap. Of course they should be prosecuted. They are killing innocent animals. That's not okay. Let's just start ridding of all the babies who aren't perfect or who are boys. That's what this company is doing with these LIVING BEINGS. Shut them down. Videos like this make me so happy I decided to go vegan.

Past Member 7 years ago

Prosecuted??? they should be burned in hell!!! and this d.a...bobbie how much are they paying him to look the other way??? and before anyone thinks this cannot happen...little bobbie needs to be checked out...i'd be interested to know where all his money and perks come public official could act with such absolute disdain...and what about having him removed from office??? it would seem if he's not going to do his job, then he needs to's a pretty basic concept....but i wonder what his stance is when it comes to human crimes and violence.....this disdain for the law may not just be for animals...yep...bobbie, his finances and his legal opinions need to be reviewed.....i hadn't seen the petition, but i just signed it....the report also doesn't say what reason bobbie gave for declining to prosecute...i wonder why???

jane richmond
jane richmond7 years ago