9.9 C
Byron Shire
July 14, 2024

Rodeo hits out at PETA

Latest News

While Hamas exists, Palestine will never be free

In response to David Heilpern’s article regarding antisemitism and Israel, (Echo, July 3) it is probably generally agreed that...

Other News

Renewables/Wallum

Edward Kent’s letter, Wallum (June 26), tried to diminish the importance of the Save Wallum campaign to mere ‘piffle’,...

Let the BBSF fun begin!

The Byron Bay Surf Festival (BBSF) is just over a month away and they have a huge program for surfers and spectators from August 15-18.

Mullum Rotary celebrates 75

On Saturday, June 22, Mullumbimby Rotary celebrated their 75th anniversary.

Byron Writers Festival 2024: Bruce Pascoe Q&A

Byron Writers Festival guests Bruce Pascoe and Lyn Harwood’s book Black Duck: A Year at Yumburra is a personal and beautiful reflection on life, Country and the consequences of Dark Emu through six seasons on their farm. Here Bruce Pascoe answers some questions about the experience.

New music festival for Mullum

Esteemed musician and founder of the Nimbin Roots Festival, Lou Bradley, is bringing a new musical venture to the heart of Mullumbimby. The inaugural Mullum Roots Festival is scheduled to take place in July 2025, promising a vibrant celebration of music, community, and sustainability.

NSW Drug Summit announced – finally

The NSW Labor government has finally delivered on their election promise to hold a NSW Drug Summit that will take place this year. 

[author]Simeon Michaels[/author]

Activists from People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) Australia protested outside the Byron Bay Rodeo on Thursday night holding signs that read ‘Byron Bay: Buck the Rodeo’  and ‘Nobody likes an 8-second ride’.

According to Des Bellamy, local activist for PETA, bulls and broncos are terrorised into action with the use of flank straps and electric prods. ‘Bulls have an electrolyte-filled sac as part of their digestive system, which makes electric prods much more painful for them. Flank straps are either tied to their genitals or they place a burr underneath them.’

Activists fails to speak to rodeo management

However, Ian Bostock, co-owner of the rodeo, says that PETA has never taken the trouble to speak with him personally and have their facts wrong. ‘We don’t use cattle prods, the flank strap is a soft rope, no burrs, and it’s round their abdomen, not their genitals.  If something’s wound tight around your goolies you won’t be bucking, you’ll be pleading. Bulls are no different.’ Bostock’s rodeo also shies from calf-roping contests.

PETA says, ‘Injuries to animals, such as deep internal-organ bruising, haemorrhaging and bone fractures, are all expected in this violent tradition.’

Occasionally hurt

Bostock agrees that animals are occasionally hurt, but ‘it’s nothing compared to what they do to each other in the paddock.’

It is also nothing compared to what they do to the cowboys, with a fatality and several hospitalisations in recent years.

Bostock also points out that his animals are purchased from the slaughterhouse.

‘These are horses that no-one can ride because they like to buck, and cross-bred bulls no good for stud.  We do around 30 rodeos from Byron up to Gympie, and we rotate our stock so that animals are taken to 15–20 a year.

‘They come out into the arena, buck for eight seconds, then go back to the paddock. Yes they work for their living, but there’s no cruelty.’

The animals appear well fed and cared for.

However, PETA believes that any level of animal suffering is unjustifiable given that the rodeo serves no purpose other than entertainment.

Suffering unjustifiable 

‘There’s nothing brave or heroic about animal abuse, and that’s all the rodeo is,’ says PETA, but Bostock disputes the claim.

‘Stockmanship is part of our heritage and I’m determined to keep it alive. Most horses will try to buck their rider at some stage and if the rider can’t handle it, then that horse gets given up on.  We need people who have the skills to ride those horses.

Also, outback stations are short of riders. These days people just want to ride motorbikes, but mustering on horseback keeps the cattle a lot calmer.

‘The rodeo inspires kids to learn horsemanship.’

A Kyogle-born rodeo lover observed, ‘bulls are naturally aggressive, I don’t think it’s anything to them, but I worry about the horses, they’re a flight animal, easily traumatised’.

Anti-cruelty laws have effectively banned rodeo in the UK. In the US, California has banned the use of cattle prods, but 12 US states have taken the opposing line, exempting rodeos from animal cruelty laws.

There is an agreement over factory animal cruelty, however: Bostock stands with Bellamy in his opposition to the factory farming of chickens and pigs.

On the ethics of preventing cruelty, Bellamy says, ‘the most important single thing a person can do is reduce or eliminate animal content in their diet’.


Support The Echo

Keeping the community together and the community voice loud and clear is what The Echo is about. More than ever we need your help to keep this voice alive and thriving in the community.

Like all businesses we are struggling to keep food on the table of all our local and hard working journalists, artists, sales, delivery and drudges who keep the news coming out to you both in the newspaper and online. If you can spare a few dollars a week – or maybe more – we would appreciate all the support you are able to give to keep the voice of independent, local journalism alive.

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

A self-hating Jew

A self-hating Jew means ‘antisemite’. David Heilpern’s 3 July article was underpinned with lies, and hateful sentiments toward one group of Australians: the Jewish...

Losing town water access

I grew up and live in Mullumbimby, and I know locals have a strong opinion about the Byron Shire Council. I had always given...

Lavertys Gap history

The Lavertys Gap hydro power station was installed in 1919. In 1939, during the Great Depression, people had no money, and Council decided to...

Electricity lines clipped and lines come down in Lismore

Police have confirmed that a truck clipped powerlines today on Dawson Street, Lismore.