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Animal Planet ‘Call of the Wildman’ Producer Fined for Animal Cruelty

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A Call of the Wildman producer was fined by the USDA for causing unnecessary harm to animals
A Call of the Wildman producer was fined by the USDA for causing unnecessary harm to animals.

Shows on Animal Planet seem to be as innocent as a young child. However, you probably expect certain protocols to be followed while filming, until you watch an episode of Call of the Wildman.

Turns out, a producer of this show was recently fined by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) for causing animal suffering. He used a number of animals without a license in several staged scenes and made them suffer, and suspicions resulted in an investigation to be conducted and a fine.

In 2014, the USDA conducted an investigation into this popular show after the People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) complained, and Mother Jones published an investigation report.

In one of the episodes, the star of the show, Ernie Brown Jr. (a.k.a. “Turtleman”) had to capture a deer who was supposedly stuck in a Kentucky shop. Brown and other men shouted as the deer ran all around the store. The deer crashed into a shelf and fell before being captured. The USDA found that this scene, which was staged, caused the deer unnecessary harm and distress.

However, this isn’t the only episode where we can witness animal suffering, on and off stage. In another episode, bats were purposefully placed in a salon to create one of Brown’s rescue scenes, a zebra was tackled and drugged in another, and a coyote suffered by being dragged, picked up by the tail, and caged, to name a few.

The alleged fine for such a violation is $1,400, even though the producer’s cruel actions were worth $100,000. This small fine he payed doesn’t seem fair enough for all of the suffering he caused, and we all expected better from the USDA.

“They got off with less than 2 cents on the dollar,” said Delcianna Winders, a deputy general counsel for PETA’s legal arm.

“It’s all too common, but it’s appalling,” Winders said regarding the reduced fine.

Thankfully, Call of the Wildman has been cancelled. It’s best if you take PETA’s words and don’t believe those “no animals were harmed” disclaimers.

#animalabuse

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