It is with great sorrow that I write this e-mail.
Due to the abuse we are experiencing from the Industrial Wind Turbines our emus have suffered greatly. First with the installation of the test towers and the high pitch sounds emitting from them, we lost 26 of our 38 emus with no eggs laid. During the time the turbines were erected and the test towers were still in place; we lost 5 more emus. Leaving us 8 emus. The Agriculture [College] in Truro reported to us that these birds had died of fear.
Three years after the turbines were up and running we finally had 7 eggs and 4 out of the 7 survived, expanding our emu count to 11. A female emu will lay approximately 40 to 50 and we were accustomed to incubating 100 per year in which half would hatch.
The next two years we had no eggs; on the third year we had 52 eggs laid and 27 chicks hatched.
From the time the Industrial Wind Turbines were erected we here had NO meat or oil to sell – only the egg shells to generate any income from our emu farm. Two years ago we put up a little shop selling polished beach stone jewellery and novelties, which Judy and Dave (Davey’s Mom and Dad) and I create. People come to see the emus and sometimes visit the shop. Unfortunately, this does not generate enough revenue to even begin to support our farm.
Over the past two years we have struggled to keep these 35 emus alive, but we could not keep their weight up … the agitation from the turbines caused them to run and run night and day wearing them down to practically nothing. The young ones suffered the most from the effects of the infrasound emitting from the turbines.
Emus’ habits are to lie down together at dusk – males and females pick their mates and the others huddle together for sleep. We noticed that our emus were not lying down, but running through the night. We noticed that the birds were getting thinner and thinner. We contacted the feed company and they added more vitamins and fibre to the feed hoping that this would help, but unfortunately it did not.
In the last two weeks we lost 5 our the younger emus. We have SEVEN of the 27 [young] emus and SIX of the mature emus remaining; totalling 13 in all. We cannot prove that it is due to the effect of the turbines, but one thing we do know is that for the 18+ years before the turbines we NEVER had any problems with our birds, no unexplained deaths, no agitation: they would lie down in the evening content and lull us to sleep with their gentle drumming. We had healthy, productive, and content emus.
People would come literally from all over the world to visit our emus. Some from Sweden, Austria, Holland, London, all over United States and Canada, senior buses and tour buses have come to visit our Emu Farm and have delighted in the antics and uniqueness of our emus. One of our emus, “Ernie”, was taken to Halifax to the Children’s Museum and appeared on the Breakfast TV show.
These unique animals have not only supplied us with healthy meat, eggs, and oil, but have brought entertainment, joy and happiness to everyone who has had the opportunity to meet them … they will be truly missed.
So with great sadness, after 18+ years with our emu farm, Ocean Breeze Emu Farm will be closing. We would like to thank everyone who has supported us and may God Bless you.
Davey and Debi VanTassel
Digby, Nova Scotia
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