A Chico egg farm has gone out of business, leaving a few thousand hens homeless and almost certainly headed for death. But Animal Place, a farmed animal sanctuary that claims to have saved more than 12,000 chickens since its 2010 inception, has teamed up with the Sonoma Humane Society to find these 1,800 abandoned chickens homes in Northern California.
If you're thinking about adding to your backyard flock or getting into the urban chicken scene, first fill out the form on the Animal Place website. Then stop by Rescue Ranch in Vacaville on one of three upcoming Fridays -- March 21, March 28, and April 4 -- to get your very own brood of "sassy red hens" 8-12 months old.
Adoption fees are $7/bird for purchases of 1-9 hens, $5 a bird for 10-15. Animal Place won't adopt out more than 15 hens to an adopter, nor will they adopt out single hens to people who don't already have a flock. And be prepared to answer some basic questions about the size of your enclosure, your predator strategy, your zoning and landlord information, etc.
Also keep in mind that the hens may only lay eggs for 1-3 more years, even though they could live for 4-10. So if you're squeamish about, uh, processing your pets for food at the end of their egg-laying career, get ready to host a your feathered friends for several years after they stop making you breakfast.