March 30, 2011 –
Nearly 400 2-yr-old hens are settling in at Animal Place’s Rescue Ranch, awaiting adoption. The lucky 2-yr-old chickens were slated for slaughter if not for our innovative and cooperative program, Animal Place’s Rescue Ranch. Now the hens are ready for a new beginning…maybe in your backyard! The hens are Black Star sex-linked hens, which are a cross between Rhode Island Reds and Barred Rocks. They are black in coloration with rust-colored lacing.
Every rescue starts with a phone call. But usually it’s to Animal Place, not the other way around! Instead of waiting – possibly forever – for egg farmers to call us, we call and introduce them to our innovative program – Rescue Ranch, located on 60-acres in Vacaville, California. The offer is simple: We will take in hens the farmer may normally send to slaughter and place them into new homes. All the costs of the rescue – catching, transporting and re-homing – are covered by Animal Place.
Since January of this year, 956 hens have been saved. And since the start of this program in late 2010, 1206 hens have been rehomed. While the philosophical differences between Animal Place and the egg farms may be stark, common ground is possible and the end result is lives saved.
All information about the farms is kept confidential to prevent farms from using the program as a means to promote their eggs and to ensure the privacy and protection of the farms.
While the hens woke up in their barn, Animal Place staff left early in the morning. It took 2.5 hours to catch all the hens, making it a full day of hard work.
Once loaded up into crates, the hens were driven to Animal Place’s Rescue Ranch and let out into a nice, grassy pasture.
It was a long day for everyone!
At the heart of Animal Place’s Rescue Ranch is its adoption program. To save as many lives as possible requires placing birds into loving and permanent homes.
The 356 hens are ready for new homes. The hens were beak trimmed at the farm (a portion of their beak has been cut off) but they can engage in normal behaviors, like preening and eating. The hens are 2-yrs-old and can happily live another 6-8 years.
If you are interested in adopting any of the hens, please fill out the adoption form. Currently, northern California residents are given priority for placement. These hens are for companion homes only.
Large rescues are costly – veterinary, feed, and bedding costs are not cheap, not to mention transport costs incurred when picking up the birds and placing them into new homes.
But with your generosity and compassion, we can make sure these hens are healthy and, more importantly, rescue more birds!