200 mutilated roosters found during search of suspected cockfighting pit in Santa Cruz County

Sheriff's deputies this week discovered approximately 200 roosters — all mutilated so that knives could be attached to them — during a search of an apparent cockfighting pit in Santa Cruz County.

Santa Cruz County sheriff's deputies discovered the pit while responding to the 30000 block of Highland Way at around 11:45 a.m. Tuesday for an unrelated welfare check, according to authorities.

They obtained a warrant and spent the night searching the property, authorities said. Along with the birds, sheriff's deputies and animal control officers found 10 firearms during the search, authorities said.

"While the scene was being processed, deputies ensured to feed and give water to the hungry birds," officials wrote in a social media post.

Juan Buenrostro Ochoa, 40, was arrested in connection with the search, authorities said. The investigation is ongoing.

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This story originally appeared in Los Angeles Times.