An animal welfare group in Great Britain that specializes in saving and re-homing farm animals, rescued 7,000 hens from a free-range egg farm when they learned the animals were scheduled for slaughter.
At just 72 weeks-old most hens, including those living on free-range farms, are considered to be past their prime for producing a high enough number of eggs to make them profitable to their owners.
Farmers typically ship the birds off to the slaughterhouse and replenish their inventory with younger hens.
Passive Pressure Animal Welfare Group is very familiar with this tragic pattern. The group was founded nine years ago with a mission to rescue and find new homes for as many discarded farm animals as possible.
The group flew into action when they received a recent call from a free-range egg farmer in Brighton letting them know his hens were coming close to their 72 week deadline.
It took the organization six days to take the hens to their new homes, with six members using their cars and vans to transport the birds.
They were able to rescue 7,000 hens and find new homes for them.
Jan Yarker, who founded Passive Pressure said in an interview printed in the News Shopper, “The rescued hens will now be able to live the rest of their lives as nature intended, dust bathing, scratching, nesting an socializing.”
Although Yarker was pleased with this enormous accomplishment, she was disappointed her group didn’t have enough time to rescue all of the hens.
The farm had a total of 12,000 birds that had reached the 72 week limit.
“However, there were still 5,000 hens that went to slaughter because we could not physically get them all out,” Yarker said.
Ms. Yarker also spoke about the cruelty of the egg farming industry. “The females either go into cruel battery cages, where they stay for 72 weeks, unable to even spread their wings, or are reared on free-range farms.”
“The male chicks will either be painfully gassed or minced alive for fertilizer.”
“Once the hens reach 72 weeks they will be slaughtered for stock cubes or pet foods and the whole cruel process starts over again,” finished Yarker.
Read more about the work Passive Pressure does on behalf of farm animals: Passive Pressure
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