United Poultry Concerns
10 January 2012
Irish Battery Hens Cruelly Slaughtered; Some Lucky Hens Saved
Watch today's RTE News, in Wexford, Ireland, showing several hens who were saved: http://www.rte.ie/news/av/2012/0110/media-3163737.html

On January 5, UPC posted an alert about the slaughter of thousands of Irish hens:
Battery Hens with Waiting Homes Slaughtered by Irish Farmers

Here is an update by (Ms.) Bernie Wright of the Alliance for Animal Rights (AFAR). Since she wrote this, 600 Irish hens have been saved for good homes after all.

The attempted Hen rescue update irish hens1

Our attempts to relocate over 400 hens destined for the slaughterhouse due to the battery cages changeover to “enriched” cages ended on Friday 6th January. News reports and spokespersons for the egg industry have stated that 90% of the hens have now been killed. It remains to be seen what will happen with the last of the hens. It seems unlikely any will be saved as the farmers are more concerned with saving appearances than saving the hens. The hens are expected to be in poor condition which was the reason we did not get them. They did not want us to see the condition these poor birds were in.

We did our best in securing over 400 homes with help from a generous public and both Eden Farm Animal Sanctuary in County Meath and the Halfway hen house in County Wexford. Whether the 10% of hens who presumably are still alive are saved or not, it’s important to note that there are hundreds of thousands of hens being killed every day in Ireland by the meat or egg industry. Over a million hens are in cages to produce eggs right now in Ireland.

The legislation passed by the EU in 1999 and transposed into Irish law in 2002 became enforceable from January 1, 2012. This law changed the caging system to slightly different, “enriched,” cages. Any farmer not complying with this law from that date could not sell eggs. The farmers held off till the last minute to increase profits and on the chance they could obtain concessions to keep using the old barren cage system for some extra time, but the law was enforced.

Having contacted Alo Mohan, the Irish Farmers Association Poultry Chairman, he agreed to help us get some of the hens to save their lives. There were 10 farmers with hens who were to be killed. He kept in touch daily on the progress, but sadly none of these farmers would give us hens, despite my matching an offer of one euro per hen, the going slaughterhouse rate.

They preferred to kill the hens rather than give them to us. So many suffering little birds who could have felt sun for the first time or pecked at grass for the remainder of their miserable lives were killed to prevent the chicken and egg producers from getting bad press. This says it all, though I genuinely feel that the IFA’s Alo Mohan really tried to save some hens. I thank him for his efforts and I believe that on some personal level he exhibited support for our efforts.

Thank you to those who offered homes. Calls are still coming in and are being passed on to Tina Brophy in her Halfway hen house in County Wexford. Other hens who were previously saved by rescue groups need help today too. One group is Eden Farm Animal Sanctuary which rescues animals who would have been killed for their “meat” or otherwise used for animal agriculture. Eden Sanctuary recently launched an appeal for financial aid due to the unprecedented number of sick animals last summer. Eden Sanctuary has so far given 30 hens a chance of experiencing freedom and kindness. We have donated 250 euro to help them house their birds. To learn more about Eden Farm Animal Sanctuary and how to donate, go to www.edenfarmanimalsanctuary.com. Thank you, Bernie Wright, AFAR.

Bernie Wright of the Alliance for Animal Rights (AFAR) in Ireland talks on the radio about the EU proposal to transfer hens from "battery cages" to "enriched cages." Irish hen enslavers have had since 1999 to make the switch, but farmers who didn’t comply by Jan. 1, 2012 slaughtered thousands of hens instead of releasing them to AFAR because they do not want the public to see the state of the birds. To listen, click on http://www.archive.org/details/BernieOnShannonSidehenMedia.

If you care--get active for the animals who are oppressed by humans. Agitate-liberate-educate, whatever it takes. If not you . . .WHO?

Bernie Wright, AFAR Press Officer in Ireland.

irish hens2

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