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The Argus helps save 9,000 Sussex chickens
Nine thousand chickens set for the slaughter house have been saved - thanks to readers of The Argus.
The laying hens, which had reached the end of their legal egg-producing lives, were due to be picked up this week by abattoir staff.
However, following a campaign by Brighton Animal Action and The Argus, all 9,000 are set for loving new homes.
Sue Baumgardt, from the charity, said: “It's fantastic. We're absolutely thrilled. We were flooded with calls after the piece went in the paper. We can't thank your readers enough.”
Government legislation dictates the hens, which are owned by Macs Farm in Ditchling, must be retired from egg-laying when they reached 12 months - after which they will usually be sent to the slaughter house to be turned into roast dinners or nuggets.
But after hearing about the practice, Brighton Animal Action set about trying to rescue the birds.
Ms Baumgardt said: “They make fantastic pets and are still perfectly good for laying.
"Macs Farm have been fantastic. They are just as passionate about re-homing the hens as we are.
“We have animal charities taking 100 here and 100 there. The rest have been picked up by local families and even people from up north and the midlands.
“We had such a positive response. I would like to thank everyone who got in touch.”
Steph Bond, 38, of Lower Bevendean Road, Brighton, took four hens home on Sunday afternoon. She said: “We had two already in our garden and took four more, so that's six in total.
“They've settled in really well apart from one of them, who is bald. She is very nervous and is a bit paranoid and doesn't want to get involved as much as the others, but it will be a challenge winning her trust.
“I think Sue and the charity have done a really good job, they deserve a medal.
“As animal lovers it's not nice thinking of what could have happened to the hens, so Sue's work has been great.”
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