Machipongo, VA - A yellow truck with more than 200 white young hens
bedded in straw drove in here from Pasco County, Florida yesterday,
after being rescued from Cypress Foods, an egg company that declared
bankruptcy in January. Thirty thousand caged hens out of 200,000 died
of starvation within 12 days because nobody fed them.
While most of the surviving hens were gassed to death in this
horrible episode, more than 300 hens were successfully rescued to
live out their lives happily at United Poultry Concerns (Va), the
Eastern Shore Chicken Sanctuary (Md), Poplar Spring Animal Sanctuary
(Md), and Oohmahnee Farm (Pa). In addition, people in Florida and
North Carolina adopted some of the hens.
Those who arrived at United Poultry Concerns yesterday poured out of
the truck onto the ground. They dove under bushes and shrubs, perched
in trees, and sat on our six-foot fence. This morning we gathered up
one hundred hens to continue their journey north to Princess Anne,
Maryland, Washington, DC, and Hunker Pennsylvania.
"It's beautiful to see these hens testing out their new world, the
green world where they belong. Let nobody say these hens are 'bred
for the cage.' They are full of vibrant energy-energy you feel just
holding them in your arms," says United Poultry Concerns President
Meanwhile, investigators took photographs and rescued at least 60 of
the starving hens at the Cypress Foods complexes in Georgia, where
more than one million birds were abandoned. Activist Christina Meade
and her team rescued 60 birds and took photographs of legs, wings,
and other body parts clinging to the bars as the birds were ripped
from the cages to have their necks savagely broken-which doesn't kill
them-and thrown onto dead piles while alive.
Florida rescuer P.J. McKosky of the Fund for Animals, who with two
fellow rescuers drove the hens to United Poultry Concerns and
supervised the Florida rescue after receiving an emergency call from
UPC two weeks ago, tried pulling out hens from the manure pits, but
after the manure reached his waist, he couldn't proceed without being
sucked down into the thick slime.
"The egg industry exhibits everything horrible you can do to a living
creature," McKosky told UPC. " That's why every rescue must be part
of our larger goal of getting the hens out of these hellholes for
good and back into the sunlight, like these amazing hens we're
looking at now."
United Poultry Concerns is a nonprofit organization that promotes the compassionate and respectful treatment of domestic fowl. For more information visit