One of our volunteer inspectors is a member of the German initiative “Rettet das Huhn”. They find homes for spent laying hens and when a farmer is preparing to rid his barn of his spent layers, this group offers to load them for free in exchange for the hens not having to go to slaughter. At 4:30am this morning we helped this fantastic German group load 850 spent hens and transport them to various locations in Germany where their new “owners” were waiting to pick them up. All new homes were first checked to make sure the hens would have access to a clean and safe outdoor area.
It took us 1.5 hours to load the birds, catching two at a time underneath the body and with the wings gently folded in. We did not have any injuries or deaths during loading or transport. The farmer was interviewed on TV and admitted that it felt good knowing his hens could live on and that he was impressed with how calm and yet still efficient the group was during catching and loading. Our team transported 107 hens back to the Rurhgebiet in Germany (near Essen) and by 11:30am all the hens were with their new owners. For more information please see www.rettetdashuhn.de. We would like to thank them for inviting us to help out, it was a very well-organized and positive action.