Sidlesham rescue centre appeals for home for 600 hens

AFTER a rough start in life these hens are looking for new homes.

Old Gardens Animal rescue Centre, in Sidlesham, has taken in 600 former battery and free range hens and staff are hoping to find new homes for them all.

Irene Clarke at the Old Gardens Animal Rescue Centre with some of the 600 former battery hen. Picture by Kate Shemilt.C131233-1

Irene Clarke at the Old Gardens Animal Rescue Centre with some of the 600 former battery hen. Picture by Kate Shemilt.C131233-1

The hens were part of a group of 9,000 rescued on Tuesday.

“We just want good homes for them,” said Irene Clarke, from the Highleigh Road centre.

“Someone who can give them a lot of love and attention.

“They are good birds and they are laying really well.”

Irene explained most large-scale farms will get rid of birds when their laying drops below around 97 per cent.

If they are not taken in by rescue centres the birds are killed.

Most of the birds rescued this time are between 14 and 15 months old and, although not suitable for commercial farming, would be ideal for a small holding or family.

“We have still got former battery hens that are eight or nine years old, they can keep going for a long time,” said Irene.

She is hoping the birds will be rehomed quickly so the centre is ready to take in the next batch, expected just before Christmas.

Irene is also appealing for donations to help pay for a new van for the centre.

The centre’s old van has required expensive maintenance this year, putting a strain on resources.

Anyone interested in making a donation or rehoming a hen can call 07775 670819 or visit the centre, open every day but Tuesday.