Buying battery hens

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by livestock101, Jun 6, 2007.

  1. livestock101

    livestock101 In the Brooder

    Mar 13, 2007
    I was sitting here today thinking I wish I had more chickens. There's a large factory farm 45 minutes drive from here so I decided to call them. I told them I wanted some hens for butcher (a small white lie) and asked if they sell their hens after they no longer want them for laying. She said, "Yes, we do." I asked how much and she replied, "Their 50 cents each." I was stunned! The next ones ready to be sold will be available on June 21.

    I know I'll have to quarantine them. I'll also look them over and treat them for lice/mites etc, if needed. They are likely to be thin.

    Have any of you ever gotten battery hens? Did they do well once they had proper care?
  2. SpottedCrow

    SpottedCrow Flock Goddess

    Some folks have gotten them and had very good luck. There's no reason that a battery hen can't lay for the rest of her life, it's just not moneywise for the big guys to do.
    You should be prepared for them to not know what grass is and to have been debeaked.
    I commend you for doing a great thing for the poor unfortunates. 1,000 Good Karma Points.[​IMG]
  3. farmgirl2477

    farmgirl2477 Songster

    Apr 2, 2007
    Oviedo, FL
    Ive read a few post on byc board about resuced battery chooks, and they all had happy endings. The chooks went from sorry little bags of feathers to beautiful and happy birds.

    Spotted crow is right, they probably wont know what grass or dirt is for, and probably clueless on the whole roosting thing too. Alittle time and teaching, and they will learn.

    Now you have me wondering "do we have a place around here?" Living in Orlando, FL we dont seem to have alot of stuff like that around here lol

    Good luck to you!
  4. BeckyLa

    BeckyLa Songster

    Jan 11, 2007
    N. Louisiana
    Yes, it's a wonderful thing you are doing. Just please be prepared for the shock of your life when you first see them. At least half of their top beaks will be gone and they will look horrible. Torn up feathers, thin, maybe even listless. All they've ever known is layer feed (I don't know if they give oyster shell or not) and won't know to eat anything else. They've never seen grass, veggies, treats, or even sunshine. I'm not trying to discourage you, I just want you to be prepared. [​IMG]
  5. ((([​IMG])))

  6. birdlover

    birdlover Songster

    Jan 11, 2007
    Northern Va.
    You will feel sooooo good when you see the results of your kind act! They will pay you back 1,000 times over. I acquired a few hens from a woman who kept them all in a coop (not true battery hens). They had never been on grass or dirt, chased bugs, etc. but the minute I put them on the ground they started dust bathing. I can't stress enough how wonderful it is to see them enjoying life for the first time. Enjoy those lucky lucky hens!!!

  7. aran

    aran Songster

    Apr 28, 2007
    rochester ny
    good for you mate...get a bunch of pics for us when u first get em so we can see how the look in comparison 3-4months from now.
  8. Freebie

    Freebie Songster

    Feb 4, 2007
    Bloomingdale, MI
    That is so awesome...
    So, how many are you getting??
  9. 4H kids and mom

    4H kids and mom Cooped Up

    Mar 10, 2007
    Southern Wisconsin
    I was considering a few myself. Maybe someone here could do a little digging and find some of these factory type farms in different states? Maybe if we all got on this rescue effort wagon, we could save hundreds of these gals instead of a few here and there. I would gladly take in 10 or more. [​IMG] Anyone know of a place in southern Wisconsin or northern Illinois?
  10. Picco

    Picco Songster

    Mar 14, 2007
    My grandparents used to buy a few "spent hens" from a battery type farm. My grandmother said they turned out to be great layers. She also mentioned how they didn't know how to be chickens but that they caught on really quick. I suggest feeding them a diet with a lot of protein so they can recover quicker and repair their abused bodies. You will be doing a great thing!

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