Spalding

Last minute saviours needed for Spalding hens in queue for slaughter house

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A charity has appealed for kind-hearted Lincolnshire residents to provide homes for 2,000 hens in Spalding before they are slaughtered in December.

Fresh Start For Hens is run entirely by volunteers who are dedicated to rehoming hens from the commercial egg production sector.

Reservations are already being made for some of the birds, who need a new home in time for Christmas, on the charity’s website.

Hens that are not collected will be taken to the slaughterhouse where they will most likely be sold for dog food, baby food or to go into pies.

The hens are around 72 weeks old and were grown commercially.

As their egg production has dropped, the hens now face the slaughterhouse.

The rehoming date is Saturday, December 3 and the hens can be picked up from a collection point in Spalding.

The group hopes that they can rehome as many hens as possible into suitable homes, where they can live out the rest of their natural lives.

2,000 ex-commercial hens are in need of a home before Christmas. Photo: Rosemary Norman

2,000 ex-commercial hens are in need of a home before Christmas. Photo: Rosemary Norman

A spokesperson for the group said on the website: “Commercially, all laying hens are slaughtered at the age of 72 weeks, when their production drops slightly.

“Their carcasses are worth very little and are usually sold for dog food, baby food or cheap, processed pies.

“We work closely with British farmers and purchase the hens from the caged, barn and free range systems, just before their slaughter date.

“We rehome hens to a diverse range of individuals wanting hens as pets or companion animals.”