pbThe Daily News/b/p
pBy Scott DeSmit /p
pAn animal rights group has released a mini-documentary detailing efforts to stop a squirrel-hunting contest in the village of Holley earlier this year./p
pFriends of Animals last week released the six minute, 41-second video showing “the horrifying behavior of the Squirrel Slam hunters and supporters,” said FOA president Edita Birnkrant./p
pBirnkrant said the video is part of the group’s ongoing effort to ban all animal-killing contests./p
pBirnkrant and other members of FOA attended Lobby Day in Albany Tuesday, encouraging lawmakers to approve three bills that have been pending. One of those bills would ban hunting contests. The other two bills: One that bans devocalization of cats and dogs and one that bans horse-drawn carriages in New York City./p
pIt is the bill that bans animal-killing contests that is featured in the documentary./p
pHolley Fire Department conducted its seventh annual Hazzard County Squirrel Slam Feb. 16. Prizes, including cash and guns, were given to the hunters bagging the largest squirrels and most combined weight for up to five squirrels./p
pThe contest drew the ire of animals rights activists, who for weeks sent letters and emails to fire and village officials asking them to stop the contest./p
pThat didn’t happen and the contest was conducted on Feb. 16, drawing about 50 protesters, who were outnumbered about 3-to-1 by those supporting the contest./p
pThe protest was for the most part peaceful but as the documentary shows, there were instances of volatility.br /
Hunters passing by in trucks waved squirrels out windows, arguments ensued between protesters and supporters and at one point a man offers a veiled “death threat” to Birnkrant. He was charged with harassment./p
pBirnkrant said the video was done to “expose and reverse the mentality that embraces such violence in communities like Holley and elsewhere.”/p
pThe video can be found on FOA’s website or directly a href=”/news/2013/april/squirrel-slam-video”here/a./p
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