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Are Thailand’s cockfighters cleaning up their act?


Throughout the Middle ages cockfighting was an important part of social life in Europe, with the English landscape in particular littered with overgrown cockfighting pits. Even today it is still a major sport in many countries in southeast Asia. In many countries, such as Indonesia and the Philippines, razors are still strapped to the legs of fighting birds, ensuring a bloody display where even the winning bird may die. In Thailand, however, the sport is moving in a more humane direction: fights are longer, rarely fatal, and won on points.

Even so it is difficult to get photographs of cockfights. International publicity has made the sport shy. Coconuts Media, based in Bangkok, managed to get access to fights and breeders for an insight into a world largely hidden from Western eyes.

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