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Seattle 'locavore' traps, cooks squirrels

Dec. 29, 2011 at 2:54 PM   |   Comments

SEATTLE, Dec. 29 (UPI) -- A Seattle "locavore" has gone very local, eating squirrels she traps in her front yard.

Melany Vorass, a former environmental analyst for the state of Washington, told the Seattle Times she knows some people may find her eating habits strange. Like other locavores, she believes in eating habits with a light environmental footprint, including eating food raised -- or trapped -- as close to home as possible.

"I know how out there it sounds," she said. "But the alternative is to close your eyes and eat what comes on a Styrofoam tray."

Vorass gives classes in urban foraging and keeps chickens, goats, bees and worms in her yard. She said she used to trap and release squirrels from her yard until someone got angry about the way she and her husband were dumping the problem rodents on neighbors.

A recipe for squirrel in an old edition of "The Joy of Cooking" gave her the idea for turning them into a food source.

Local officials say Vorass is breaking no laws, although she could not open a restaurant and serve squirrel.

"I don't see any reason why we would object," said City Council President Richard Conlin, also a locavore activist. "From a public-policy standpoint it's an individual making a choice, and that's fine."

Vorass traps the squirrels live and then drowns them, which she has determined is the quickest death for the animals.

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