Between 1,200 and 1,500 mink were illegally released on October 7, 2011 from a rural residence near Jewell, which is 56 miles north of Des Moines, Iowa. The Sheriff said “unknown persons opened pens in several buildings and let the mink loose.”
The Sheriff’s Department, Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation and FBI are investigating the case. Officials said the incident is considered an act of domestic terrorism.
According to EnviroLink.org, Iowa has had more fur farm raids than any other state, with this being the 9th recorded mink farm liberation. After 5 years of steady activity, there were no raids for eight straight years (2003 to 2011). This week’s raid broke a long run of peace for fur farmers in Iowa.
Fur farms can be found in over 30 states in the U.S., according to statistics available on the Fur Commission USA’s website.
Image Source: Peter Trimming/Flickr