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Maxwell the rooster, had been living for a month or two on the median at the Oakland I-580 offramp at MacArthur/Mills.  Someone likely was living with Maxwell in their backyard, but dumped this young rooster when he started crowing and it became obvious that he was not a hen. At the freeway offramp, Maxwell made a roost in the lower branches of a small tree, and would come down the [...]

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On July 21, in a darkened auditorium adjacent to the elevated BART tracks at 57th and MLK, the Oakland Planning Department held a community workshop on urban agriculture. With 300 plus attendees clamoring to shout above one another, the loudest voices dominated the discussion, and other perspectives were silenced without redress. The goal? To “build community” and to incorporate “issues of concern” surrounding urban agriculture. The outcome? Failure on both [...]

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Kiko is a delightfully sweet and friendly rabbit – you would never know that just days ago, she was rescued from a storage unit in the backyard of an apartment building in Oakland, where she was being raised for meat, and had been fed nothing but white rice. She was one of 21 rabbits confiscated by the East Bay SPCA and Oakland Animal Services. They were found in inhumane conditions, [...]

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With access to healthful fruits and vegetables lacking in many areas of Oakland, the city is modifying its zoning regulations to make it easier for people to grow and sell edible plants. As an urban gardener in Oakland, I support these changes 110 percent. The problem is that some are also pushing the city to allow for animal farming and slaughter, and some people have already begun killing animals illegally. [...]

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KRON 4 television broadcast from June 1st, 2011 showing the horrible conditions that one Oakland animal farmer kept rabbits in, with the intent to slaughter them for food. More information about the confiscation is available via Oakland Animal Services.  Below are photos taken on the day of the bust by animal control officers.

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The urban livestock enthusiasts profiled in “Meet the farmer next door” in the Chronicle are pertinent to why Oakland residents should be concerned about encouraging neighbors to breed and kill animals as a hobby in our city.  Look past the smiling faces and investigate the claims they use to justify urban animal agriculture in Oakland — an uncomfortable truth will come to light. One of the animal farmers interviewed explains [...]

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What exactly is on the chopping block in Oakland these days? If one proposal goes through, it could be a live animal’s neck. Oakland recently called for public input to clarify the urban agriculture language in its planning code. There are questions about the legality of activities such as growing and selling veggies from your urban farm, which could serve our community with nutritious, local, sustainable food. The current code [...]

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