It's been a busy couple of weeks here at NSW Hen Rescue. Not only have we saved 20 hens from battery cages, but we were also alerted to 3 isa brown hens stranded on a motorway entrance island on the M4.
This spot on the M4 is notorious for hens falling off trucks. Since this island of bush is totally surrounded by motorway and a busy road at the top, we believe the only way these 3 girls could've ended up there was either to be dumped or to have fallen from a truck on their way to an egg shed. The second option is the most likely as people usually dump old hens and roosters, not young, healthy girls and there was nowhere to park near where they were dumped.
I tried to gather volunteers together to help, but I didn't have much luck so headed out alone with my carrier and some chicken feed to do my best at rescuing the hens. Watch the video above which is a compilation of my Instagram stories that I made at the time.
The 3 girls are currently enjoying life with me until they go to their brand new home this weekend. Their life will be quite different now than it would've been at the egg farm. I can't tell you how relived I am that they are safe.
We have welcomed a new member to our family. Hercules the quail was caught by a dog and thankfully the dog's guardian was able to save him. He then went to a kind lady who contacted us. She wanted to make sure Hercules went to a safe and loving home and had seen our stories about Pepper quail on Instagram. I was a bit unsure as to how the introduction would go, but it was love at first sight! One day I was planning to keep Pepper in for a bit longer so she could have her meds (she recently had a toe amputation), but Hercules crowed and crowed until I brought her outside to him. He then followed her around like a puppy. They really are a sweet little couple and although Pepper had become good friends with Ariel and Maddie the special needs hens, I am so glad she has some quail companionship.
Hercules' crow is amazingly loud for such a tiny bird. He sleeps inside the house and I've had to cover his carrier with a sheet or we get a 4.30am alarm call that can be heard around the whole house. But in the day his crow sounds enough like a parrot that the neighbours would not think to complain and he is much quieter now he has Pepper to spend time with.
We have had a lot of vet bills lately in our special needs flocks. In fact on one extra busy day, we had 6 vet appointments! Kourtney, Maddie and Juniper had implants as they all struggle with laying eggs, Pepper hurt her toe after a bad flight landing, Rafael the indian ringneck was a bit off colour and needed a check up and Astrid needed eye surgery. Astrid was rescued back in August from a property where many hens had been killed. She had a hard build up of pus in her eye and sadly there seems to be some permanent damage. The ophthalmologist discovered a nodule on her third eyelid. It must have been so uncomfortable, like a big grain of sand in her eye. Now that the nodule has been removed Astrid seems a lot more comfortable and continues on eye medications and pain relief.
We are still saving up for Matilda's eye operation and Ahna's CT scan.
Our hen heroes (regular donors) have helped us so much with these costs and many other people have stepped up and made a one off donation. I want to say a big thank you, as without you none of this would be possible. It is only because of these donations that we are able to plan our next liberation.
If you would like to be a hen hero click here.