Devries says he's been using drones to capture the factory farm landscape since 2012 (he's also the director of "Speciesism: The Movie"). Partly, Devries used drones out of necessity: "The factory pig farms in North Carolina ... are kept well-hidden with trees planted all around the perimeter - and barbed wire fences."
Drones, he says, could surpass the barriers, fly to pre-installed altitude-based GPS locations, hover, and return. Plus, they're fast: "I could set up the drone, fly it, get footage and pick it up and leave in less than five minutes."
Devries believes drones are useful not only because they document farms' potential environmental transgressions, but also because they show the public that their traditional image of a "farm" and the reality is totally different: "People perceive of farms as being in accordance with the old image of Old MacDonald's - with a pasture and a small number of animals," says Devries.
But that's just totally false: "Farms in that sense do not exist anymore practically speaking in the U.S. Pigs are grown in massive factories. It can best be described as appearing like a science fiction dystopia with thousands of animals crammed together indoors in tightly controlled settings - air, lighting, food and so forth is all under the control of the factory system."