A startling find along a major highway in Bern Township, Berks Co., left officials at the Animal Rescue League scratching their heads.
A 5 x 7 trailer with only a thin tarp covering the top was found packed with dozens of piglets Wednesday on Route 222. It was sitting on the grass just south of the Route 183 interchange.
"Some construction workers in the area reported it to police, and said it had been there for a couple of hours," said Chris Shaughness, director of media and marketing for the ARL.
Fifty-five pigs were in the trailer. They were taken to the shelter and spent Thursday inside a horse barn. The shocking discovery was a first for the ARL.
"We went out and bought two 50-pound bags of food, which we already have gone through half of that. They are in the barn in a nice warm enclosure and they're being well cared for," said Shaughness.
The piglets are only a few months old, and weigh between 20 to 30 pounds.
With the help of police, the ARL tracked down the owner, Antonio Salvador of Hampton, N.J.
According to police, the tires of the trailer blew out, and both wheels were removed. The owner went to replace them and when he returned, his pigs were gone.
The ARL said he was expected to pick them up Thursday, and he is responsible for $400 in towing and other costs.