Edgar’s Mission Passport
Silkie Rooster
11th January 2023
An abandoned meat farm
Camouflaging into my surroundings
Being freed from a cramped cage
Certified true likeness
Camo’s story

The Things We Hide

Updated February 2, 2023

Camouflage – synonyms: disguise, hide, conceal, keep hidden, mask, screen, veil, cloak, cover, cover up, obscure, shroud.

Taking his name from his serendipitous ability to blend in with the motley-hued bark of the tree he has claimed as his own is Camo. If not for the stark red magnificence of his comb, he could well have gotten away with his mission.

However, spying the diminutive Camo by the tree he races to each morning, and the company of which he keeps all day, we have elected to play along with his ruse.

For he is not ready to accept our kindness just yet.

Although our presence he has, and that is a great place to start.

And given what this lad and his buddies have ploughed through, experiencing the worst of humanity and our wanting animal protection laws, it is easy to understand that he suspects the tender care and delicious treats on offer are a camouflage for just another torment.

For the smarts of chickens are keen, and so too are their rich emotional worlds

For the smarts of chickens are keen, and so too are their rich emotional worlds. All of which has, for too long, sat behind the smokescreen of the derogatory expression of “bird brain”. A human-bestowed convenience that has led to the many travesties that have legally befallen them.

Recently, neuroscientist and executive director of the Kimmela Center for Animal Advocacy, Lori Marino, authored a peer-reviewed article revealing that chickens demonstrate self-control and self-assessment, suggesting self-awareness.

Further, she has laid bare their cognitive capabilities, including the ability to recall past events and learn from them, how they can empathise with others, dream, and even do basic arithmetic. They were shown to perceive time and anticipate the future – wouldn’t it be grand if we could create a kinder one for them?

In fact, we can.

By having the courage and compassion to step behind the veil of the farm gate and see things for what they are, not what society and the blind spot of our expediency would have us believe.

One step into that hellhole of despair that was “home” to Camo and thousands of other gentle Silkie chickens would do this. For it was a place where every one of one’s senses was assaulted in the most nightmarish of ways.

A place where one quickly realised that the Codes of Practice that enabled such atrocities to pass as legitimate businesses were simply a deplorable pretence for kindness that is, in fact, a camouflage for institutionalised animal cruelty, facilitated injustice, and debased exploitation.

Fuelled now with this knowledge as you are, we trust it will empower and propel you to help shape that kinder world for all by living each day where your inherent kindness is no secret.