- Title: Owner facing lawsuit defends French rooster Maurice for crowing too loudly
- Date: 31st August 2019
- Summary: SAINT-PIERRE-D'OLERON, FRANCE (AUGUST 29, 2019) (REUTERS) MAURICE THE ROOSTER IN BACKYARD OWNER OF MAURICE WHO IS BEING SUED FOR ROOSTER'S LOUD CROWS, CORRINE FESSEAU, FEEDING CHICKENS VARIOUS OF MAURICE AND OTHER CHICKENS EATING FESSEAU STANDING BY CHICKEN COOP, MAURICE GETTING OUT FESSEAU FEEDING MAURICE (SOUNDBITE) (French) OWNER OF MAURICE THE ROOSTER WHO IS BEING SUED FOR LOUD CROWS, CORRINE FESSEAU, SAYING: "I said, I'm not going to let myself be pushed around. Nature has to stay what it is and the countryside should get back its normal noises. All our elected officials back me and agree with me. There's a very big problem. People have to understand that in the city, they are used to noise, but in the countryside, we find other noises that have always been there and that are normal. The countryside should stay as is and they should not say, 'We should silence the countryside noises'." FESSEAU OPENING WINDOW, POINTING AT HOUSE OF NEIGHBOURS WHO ARE SUING HER (SOUNDBITE) (French) OWNER OF MAURICE THE ROOSTER WHO IS BEING SUED FOR LOUD CROWS, CORRINE FESSEAU, SAYING: "When we (countryside residents) go to the city, we tolerate the noise, we don't like it, but we adapt. So when they (city residents) come to the countryside, they should do the same thing. They have to adapt and not be the law of the town, which is what three-quarters of them do. We can't handle that anymore. Even the mayors are getting powerless, regarding complaints, people come to complain saying: 'There's a rooster that crows, a frog that caws, a bell that rings.' That's not acceptable anymore." ROOSTER FIGURINE LETTER FROM SUPPORTERS OF MAURICE FROM UNITED STATES ON TABLE READING (French): "WE LOVE YOU MAURICE! YOUR FRIENDS FROM THE UNITED STATES / LONG LIVE MAURICE!" FESSEAU LOOKING AT LETTERS WITH A FRIEND WHO SUPPORTS HER ASSOCIATION IN SUPPORT OF MAURICE LETTER FROM SUPPORTERS OF MAURICE LETTER FROM SUPPORTERS OF MAURICE FROM BELGIUM T-SHIRT WITH PICTURE OF MAURICE AND TEXT READING (English): "SUPPORT MAURICE THE FRENCH COCK" / FESSEAU AND FRIEND WALKING TOWARDS WOMAN IN T-SHIRT SHOP T-SHIRTS IN SUPPORT OF MAURICE FESSEAU AND FRIEND IN SHOP (SOUNDBITE) (French) LOCAL BUSINESS OWNER WHO SELLS T-SHIRT IN SUPPORT OF MAURICE THE ROOSTER, BENOIT GUITTON, SAYING: "The idea in the beginning was to support Corrine's association (in support of Maurice), but especially to push out a cry of anger against the fact that a rooster could congest a tribunal. I think we should stop all this. We are defending, of course, rural living, we are defending all animals in the countryside, but it's especially to say, 'Stop, let's stop suing our neighbours for a rooster, for the seagulls, for the frogs'." VARIOUS OF PEOPLE IN STREET (SOUNDBITE) (French) 62-YEAR-OLD TOURIST FROM HAUTE SAVOIE, BERNADETTE, SAYING: "I'll beat their faces, these people who come from Parisian homes and complain of the rooster. There wouldn't even be a lawsuit, I'll just beat them up. It's unacceptable. This is all stupid." (SOUNDBITE) (French) 65-YEAR-OLD TOURIST FROM HAUTE SAVOIE, MICHEL, SAYING: "That said with all this you can no longer eat the rooster." (SOUNDBITE) (French) 62-YEAR-OLD TOURIST FROM HAUTE SAVOIE, BERNADETTE, SAYING: "No, I don't, not with the Parisians. I'm not eating with the Parisians." (SOUNDBITE) (French) 65-YEAR-OLD TOURIST FROM HAUTE SAVOIE, MICHEL, SAYING: "Well, I'm talking about the owners, maybe they're also fed up of being bothered. Maybe they're ready to make it into a coq-au-vin." (SOUNDBITE) (French) 62-YEAR-OLD TOURIST FROM HAUTE SAVOIE, BERNADETTE, SAYING: "Yes, maybe they would be ready for a coq-au-vin." PARISIAN TOURIST, NATHALIE, LOOKING AT POSTCARDS POSTCARD FOR OLERON ISLAND (SOUNDBITE) (French) 40-YEAR-OLD PARISIAN TOURIST, NATHALIE, SAYING: "No, I think the court complaint is a bit abusive. I think, again, it's part of daily life, and hearing a rooster crow is part of life. It's pretty nice to hear an animal speak out." PEOPLE WALKING AT PORT / SEAGULL ON POLE PEOPLE WALKING AT PORT FISHERMAN PORT AND SEA
- Embargoed: 14th September 2019 10:17
- Keywords: French cockerel rooster countryside Maurice the rooster trial hearing court
- Location: SAINT-PIERRE-D'OLERON, FRANCE
- City: SAINT-PIERRE-D'OLERON, FRANCE
- Country: France
- Topics: Crime/Law/Justice,Judicial Process/Court Cases/Court Decisions
- Reuters ID: LVA001AUJT6BR
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: PLEASE NOTE: THIS VIDEO IS AN EXACT REFILE OF EDIT 5139-FRANCE-COCKEREL/COURT SENT ON AUGUST 30, 2019 AND CONTAINS NO NEW IMAGES.
A loud 4-year-old rooster called Maurice on an island off the French Atlantic shore has pitched a couple of city slickers, who bought a second house there, against locals and raised an uproar in the whole country.
Two years ago, Jean-Louis Biron has started to complain against Maurice's early crowing to its owners, Jacky Fesseau, born on the island, and his wife Corrine, who refused to get rid of their beloved fowl.
"The cock's yelling starts at 4:30 and keeps all morning and well into the afternoon," the Birons said in an official letter to their neighbours.
Since 2017, the conflict escalated and the parts, against wise advises from their respective lawyers and a mediator, went to court.
"I'm telling myself, I'm not going to let myself be bullied," Corrine Fesseau said. "The countryside should stay as is and they should not say: 'We should silence the countryside noises'."
Maurice's case underscores the decades-long conflict in France between city dwellers buying summer homes in the countryside without being ready to cope with negative externalities associated with living outside cities such as noise, odours or insects, and farmers.
Maurice has raised a broad move of sympathy and support from all over France and beyond.
"The idea in the beginning was to support Corrine's association (in support of Maurice), but especially to push out a cry of anger against the fact that a rooster could be involved in a lawsuit. I think we should stop all this," said Benoit Guitton, a local business owner who sells t-shirts supporting Maurice.
"We are defending, of course, rural living, we are defending all animals in the countryside, but it's especially to say, 'Stop, let's stop suing our neighbours for a rooster, for the seagulls, for the frogs," he said.
Cases in the country were filed by city slickers against cows, church bells, but none has had the same impact as Maurice, who has found friends as far away as in the U.S. from where the bird has received letters of support.
(Production: Udi Kivity, Ardee Napolitano)
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