Newsletter - Animal Writes sm
From  Issue
7 April 2002

Pasco County Hens Find Sanctuary at United Poultry Concerns
From United Poultry Concerns 

[Information from March 22, 2002 notice]

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 Karen Davis."

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

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