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Battery Hens

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Introduction

Battery Hens

The hen was cramped. She hadn’t stretched or even moved in the last two months since she hatched. Her feathers were covered in filth because she couldn’t reach to clean them. Her beak had been cut off when she was just hours old and it was still causing her searing pain. She had already several broken bones which would probably never heal…

This situation is very common in battery hen factories where all that the hens do is keep on laying eggs. Often there is no sunlight in the factories but artificial lighting programmes which are supposed to stimulate hens into laying more eggs.

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Middle

The battery system was designed to allow faeces to drop through the bottom of the cage, separating the hens from possible sources of diseases - especially those caused by internal parasites. But the cage system itself creates severe disease problems and suffering. The duties of the stockperson amount to little more than the upkeep of automated equipment and removal of dead birds from their cages. While no official statistics exist the government have estimated that over 2 million battery hens die in cages every year.

Now you wonder, what happens to all the male chicks? Half of all chicks born are male are killed (usually by gassing)

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Conclusion

Battery hens are prone to multiple fractures during capture and transportation to the killing plant. In a study by the Institute of Food Research at Langford near Bristol, researchers found that 29% of battery hens had broken by the time they reached the slaughterhouse. By the end of the slaughtering process 98% had broken bones.

Now we move on to the most hard-hitting of all these arguments: Most battery hens have to stand on a piece of wire caging smaller tan a piece of A4 paper and this is permitted by law.

Would consumers not be willing to pay a little more when they buy eggs just to end this continuous suffering of these innocent beings who can do nothing to help themselves except cluck quietly in a corner?

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This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Height and Weight of Pupils and other Mayfield High School investigations section.

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