If you didn’t choose to save Jake this is what will happen to him…
At just seven weeks old, catchers will go into Jake’s shed, but they are not taking him to the pond to see his mother. Like the other thousands of little ducklings, a panicked Jake will be caught by the neck. He will be carried to the waiting crates and then might be lifted in by his legs – something extremely painful if he was one of the many birds which developed leg abnormalities from being bred to be so heavy.
Jake will be crammed into a cage like this and sent on his first and last journey – to the slaughterhouse
Crammed into crates with his fellow ducklings, Jake will finally leave the shed – the only journey he will ever make alive. Driven to one of the fifteen slaughterhouses licensed to kill ducks in the UK; his journey could take hours.
Once at the slaughterhouse, Jake will join the mechanised route that leads to only one thing – his death.
This is what would become of Jake. Just another little casualty on the supermarket shelves.
Most likely, Jake will be hung by his legs on shackles, on a conveyor belt. This can be for anything up to two minutes – an excruciatingly long time for a bird with leg injuries. The line in front of him will be long with terrified ducklings struggling to get free, as the belt grinds inexorably towards an electrified water bath that is meant to render them unconscious. … It is a horrible irony that this is the only time these aquatic birds will ever see anything like open water. … If Jake ‘swan necks’ (lifts his head up) he may miss the water entirely, and could go to the revolving knife fully aware. Even if he is stunned, the current may be so low that he will still be partly conscious and fully aware by the time his throat is cut.
As Jake bleeds to death, his blood will drain into a trough as the ducks pass along the line. His lifeless body will pass through a scalding tank at 60 degrees centigrade, then moved to a rubber-fingered plucking machine, through a hot wax dip, then a cold dip to set the wax followed by removal of the wax and down. Jake’s body will be eviscerated and then cooled in either slush ice or a spin chiller. After draining, he will be weighed and placed in a plastic bag, his giblets wrapped in plastic film and stuffed inside his body cavity.
Jake will make one final journey: to the shelves of your local supermarket or restaurant. A once lively little duckling with a zest for life, will lie still and cling-filmed in a neat line with the remains of hundreds of other dead animals. His past and suffering forgotten?
Find out what would have happened if you chose to save Jake.