Tips for Handling Trespasser and Drones

Kevin Abernathy, MPC General Manager

In light of recent activist activity on dairy farms in the North Coast and Southern California, MPC feels it is important to remind our members of the best course of action when faced with a situation involving trespassers or drones on your dairy. Illegal activity from anti-dairy activists in the state is expected to take place again this weekend.


Because of this possible threat to your operation we encourage you to educate yourself, your family, and others in the dairy community on these tips:

• Direct all employees to immediately notify you if any suspicious individuals are on or near your dairy facility;

• Post “No Trespassing” signs on your property in accordance with Penal Code 554.1 and 553. Signs can be purchased from Farm Bureau by calling 1-800-698-FARM.

• Trespassing Signs on property more than 1 acre and not fenced should be placed less than 600 feet apart along all perimeters (554.1) o The signs must be 1 foot in area. The letters must not be less than 2 inches in height and must state ‘trespassing-loitering forbidden by law’ or words describing the use of property (e.g. ‘Dairy Facility’) followed by “no trespassing.” (553)

• Immediately report trespassers to local law enforcement and ask about filing a “Will Serve Trespass Letter” for your dairy facility with their department.

• When questioning the individuals trespassing on your property, be sure to ask who they are and what their business is in a calm, respectful manner. More than likely they are recording you on video (and if it does not seem like they are keep in mind the increased use of hidden cameras). They want you to lose your cool for their own agenda.

• Notify the individuals that they are trespassing on private property and ask them to leave. Do not use force. If they refuse your request, allow law enforcement to handle the situation.


• Film both the activists and drones on your property, which you are legally allowed to do.

• Do not touch or shoot drones, even those flying over your property. FAA regulations make this act illegal.

• Notify your dairy cooperative and/or trade association to alert them of the situation.

Remember that the individuals trespassing on your property are doing so to advance their own agendas. Getting angry or threatening these individuals in any way are the sort of actions that they are hoping to get out of you. Activists want to use you for their own publicity and propaganda. Don’t let it happen to you or this industry. The law is on our side. Keep your cool and let law enforcement enforce the laws. We do not want to be the next social media recruiting tool for any of these anti-dairy groups.