Battery cages are “a housing system used for various animal production methods, but primarily for egg-laying hens,” according to Wikipedia. “The name arises from the arrangement of rows and columns of identical cages connected together, in a unit, as in an artillery battery.”
In case you don’t know, battery cages aren’t really a good thing. They are super restrictive and don’t give hens the physical space they need to live their lives.
There’s no way for hens to keep their skin and feather healthy when they are kept in battery cages. There are no nests, perches, scratching, or ways for hens to dust bathe.
Thankfully, there are many people trying to restrict the use of battery cages and rescue the poor hens. British Hen Welfare Trust is one of those wonderful organizations.
“We collected 56 rescued battery hens from the Battery Hen Welfare Trust in Chulmleigh, Devon,” this person shared on Youtube along with a video of the rescued hens beautifully running free.
“3 days before battery cages became illegal in favour of the still horrific ‘enriched’ battery cages. The girls will now live out their lives free ranging Stock Wood Farm to their hearts contents,” they added.
In the video, we see the rescued hens leave their box as they experience grass for the very first time. They are, naturally, hesitant, and have trust issues. It would even be fair to say that they don’t even know what grass is. They rarely see it!
They don’t hop out of their boxes so fast. Instead, they take a moment to assess their surroundings and, honestly, figure out where the heck they are.
What they don’t know is how lucky they are to finally be free!
A seriously beautiful moment.
Eventually, with the help of the kind humans who saved them, the wonderful hens make their way out of their cardboard boxes and slowly but surely enjoy the grass that the world has to offer them.
This clip does nothing but warm our hearts immensely.
It truly feels momentous, to see a group of hens who were once so suppressed finally roam free and live their best, beautiful lives.
And after this day, they will have gone on to live a life with much more freedom after that. As the Youtuber mentioned, they had a home on a brand new farm that would treat them much better.
“We think all laying hens deserve to enjoy a natural lifestyle whilst they lay tasty eggs for us to eat; including space to roam on green pasture, the chance to enjoy fresh air and sunshine, to scratch for insects and the opportunity to lay an egg in a nest,” BHWT writes on their website.
Here are just a few things that BHWT does:
“1. We work with top avian vets to improve pet hen health.
2. We collaborate with cross government to improve communications to pet hen keepers.
3. We educate young people about the joys of keeping chickens through our schools education programme.”
Additionally, they save over 60,000 hens from slaughter each year and find them new homes in caring places. They also “educate consumers about the caged eggs hidden in processed foods, like pasta, quiche, cakes and mayonnaise so they can make an informed choice when shopping.”
Sounds like BHWT is continuing to do fantastic work!
Watch the heartwarming video below.
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