Three-Legged Duck In China Has Weird Animal Collector Ready To Go Out On A Limb
Save a drumstick for Todd Ray -- or three for that matter.
The Los Angeles resident is trying to rescue a three-legged duck that is supposedly alive and well in Nan'an, a town in the Fujian Province of China.
Ray runs the Venice Beach Freakshow in Los Angeles and has, perhaps, the largest collection of bizarre animals in the world -- including 22 living two-headed animals and a five-legged dog.
Now, he wants to find and purchase the three-legged duck and bring it to California. He hopes he has more than a wing and a prayer of making his ducky dreams come true.
The duck was purchased at a market stall by a man who intended to kill it for food. However, Metro reports that after peeking at the duck, the man had second thoughts about his three-limbed quacker.
Duck shop owner Chen Xiantong was reportedly happy to give the man a full refund for the one-off creature.
"He said the duck was too weird with its extra leg, and he feared it may be harmful to health," Chen explained to the paper.
Instead of crying foul, Xiantong is letting the triple-limbed duck live in the shop and says its presence has been good for business.
That's great news for the duck -- and great news for Ray.
"It's good that the owner doesn't want to kill it," Ray told AOL Weird News. "People need to see creatures like these. To me, they are magical animals -- as long as they aren't suffering."
Ray is trying to track down the exact location of the duck and is willing to purchase it for his collection, which currently includes as the highlight, a two-headed, six-legged bearded dragon that recently celebrated its first birthday.
He believes it is his mission in life to showcase animals to the largest audience possible.
"Some people think life comes in certain forms, but animals like these prove it comes in all forms," he said. "People wanted to put down the five-legged dog because it was different, but I wouldn't let that happen. If young people can see animals like these, it increases their curiosity."
Although some of the animals in Ray's collection are stuffed, they are best appreciated in their living, breathing form, he said.
"When people see something with three legs that is taxidermied, they think it looks fake," he said.
Meanwhile, as Ray tries to track down the three-legged duck, he admits he's going clucking crazy trying to find a four-legged chicken reportedly on "death row" at a Jerusalem slaughterhouse in the Mea Shearim neighborhood.
Ever since the story was reported on June 29, Ray has been desperately trying to find the chicken in hopes of saving it from near-certain death.
"As soon as I heard that story, I said to myself, 'I gotta save that chicken,'" Ray lamented. "At least with the duck, the guy who bought it didn't want it, but at least they aren't killing it. I can't let them kill the chicken."
Although Ray contacted Reuters reporter Tara Cleary, who broke the story internationally, it was a dead end.
"She either would not, or could not, help me," he said. "She didn't know the name of the slaughterhouse."
The status of the four-legged chicken is unclear at this point, but Ray is holding out hope he will be able to save it -- and others.
"I will go anywhere to find them and bring them back alive," he said. "Creatures like this are to be protected."
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