Pigeon shoots are competitions where hundreds to thousands of live birds are killed to win prizes. A typical 3-day “contest” can kill and injure up to 15,000 birds.
For the past year a group called SHARK has been fighting against live pigeon shoots in Pennsylvania. Recently, the group went to the Wing Pointe commercial hunting grounds in Hamburg, PA., to record the aftermath of a recent pigeon shoot. What they found was a pile of hundreds of dead birds, dumped like garbage. Three wounded but still living birds were found amongst the corpses.
The birds are captured and collected for these shoots weeks ahead of time, then released from trap boxes only yards away from the “sportsmen.” The birds are generally dazed and suffering from dehydration or starvation as they are sprung out of the boxes. Rather than mercifully being given a quick death, 70% of the birds are injured when shot and either left to suffer slow deaths or collected and killed by pigeon shoot “trapper boys” or “wringers”, traditionally children, who break their necks, step on them, tear off wings, suffocate them, or cut off their heads with garden shears, among other abuses.
Pigeon shoots are illegal in all but a couple of American states.