Volunteers at the Oxfordshire branch of The British Hen Welfare Trust are celebrating the rehoming of their 10,000th hen! Based at Willow Farm near Didcot, the charity saves hens from slaughter by finding them appropriate news homes across the country.
Better Lives for Battery Hens
Like most of the birds which have been rehomed by the trust, the 10,000th bird had been kept in a cage for 18 months laying eggs to be sold to retailers or to become ingredients in processed foods. The hen arrived at the charity looking thin and having lost all of her feathers. Collected with 247 other chickens, she was saved from the slaughterhouse.
The British Hen Welfare Trust boasts 30 branches nationally which have collectively saved 620,000 battery chickens. Pick-up days are organised when the public can collect birds for their gardens or farms. The Oxfordshire branch was established on the site of what was an RSPCA animal rescue centre. There is a constant flow of birds in need of new homes and so the charity’s work will never be done!
10,000th Bird Named
The 10,000th hen to be rescued by the Oxfordshire branch has been christened Tenny Penny by her new owner Nikki Absolom who travelled from Berkshire to collect her. Apparently, the bird is a bit of a diva! Perhaps her new-found fame has gone to her head!
With so many birds reaching the end of their commercial lives every week, the Trust always has its work cut out to rehome them all. They are keen to point out that the birds make excellent family pets and have been known to build amazing friendships with many other animals including cats, dogs and even llamas!
How to Adopt Your Hens
If you would be interested in offering a new home to a flock, you can register at www.bhwt.org.uk and then call on 01884 860084 to speak to the charity’s rehoming team. The minimum number of hens you can reserve is three, although the trust will permit you take only two if you already have hens. The maximum number of birds you can adopt is normally twenty (which must all stay together with you).
If you aren’t able to rehome a hen, you can sponsor one instead! You will get to know all about your hen and sponsorship packs are amazing gifts for animal lovers.