Kat Eschner's newsletter about animal-human relationships Vol. 5 iss. 7
|Kat Eschner||Apr 28|
This week’s edition of The Quick Fox was brought to you by, I’m very sorry to say, meatpacking.
The notoriously poor-labor-practices job has not fared well in COVID-19. Outbreaks of the highly infectious virus have occurred in meat processing plants in Canada and the US, leading to widespread closures. They’re places that have tight working conditions and low pay, which are just two of the reasons for this.
I’ve been keeping an eye on this and I want to share a few links from different North American sources. No Tyson, the meat system isn’t collapsing; Filipino workers at meatpacking plant feel unfairly blamed for Canada’s biggest COVID-19 outbreak; Greeley meatpacking plant to raise wages by $4 an hour, strengthen safety measures; OSHA releases guidance to keep meatpacking workers safe amidst surging cases, foodpacking fears; More than 95% of Canada’s beef comes from three processing plants. Two of them have COVID-19 outbreaks.
Things I read recently, sorted by the amount of time I suspect it will take you to get through them.
Fisheries and Oceans Canada pulls at-sea observers from fishing boats due to coronavirus pandemic (The Narwhal; Jimmy Thompson; Canada)
COVID-19 has rats on the move (The Tyee; Ainslie Cruickshank; Vancouver, Canada)
Thailand scrambles to contain major outbreak of horse-killing virus (Science; Christa Lesté-Lasserre; Thailand)
The problem with shrimp (The New Republic; Alicia Kennedy; Puerto Rico)
5 rules for rooming with lab animals during coronavirus (The New York Times; Cara Giaimo; United States, Australia, Colombia, Germany
Now peep this! Announcing the winners of #PeepYourScience 2020 (The Open Notebook; Siri Carpenter; the internet)
Ornithologists challenge ‘birdbrained’ and ‘eat like a bird’ (NPR; the radio)
The hunt for Atlanta’s friendly black coyote (Atlanta; Gray Chapman; Atlanta, USA)
A peek inside COVID-19 pantries across the GTA shows much more than toilet paper (Toronto Star; Karon Liu; Toronto, Canada)
A quiet plague outbreak has been killing Yellowstone’s cougars for years (National Geographic; Jason Bittel; Yellowstone National Park, USA)
Please read me
My most recent work.
The last word
It’s been a busy month here—sorry I haven’t written you all more often. But now that I am writing, I want to share a couple of other things I worked on that I’m really proud of.
Last week, The Local, a Toronto outlet, published Tuesday in Allan Gardens, where the police guard the benches, my account of a day spent field reporting in my local park. I spent the day talking to people experiencing homelessness about how they’re living through the COVID-19 pandemic.
On the weekend, I spoke to New Hampshire Public Radio’s Taylor Quimby about lab animal research and the pandemic. We talked about this story I wrote for Popular Science earlier in the month and had a great sidebar about the euphemistic nature of terms like “non-human primate,” “euthanize,” and “humane.” You can listen to our interview here, at about minute 37.
All images in The Quick Fox are used under Creative Commons licensing. Efforts have been made to ensure that photographs of living animals or natural scenes have been taken ethically, in responsible pet ownership conditions, at AZA-accredited zoos and aquariums or under safe, non-damaging conditions in the wild. If you see an issue with any image we share, please notify me.