Protect chicks from egg-hatching projects in schools

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Every year, young hatchlings are distributed across the country to paying schools and educational facilities, who have no idea what happens to the chicks when they’re too old to be handled in the classroom.

These schools say that it is educational for children to watch the chicks be born and play with the chicks, when most are in fact very young (sometimes 2-3yr olds) and often end up mishandling the chicks.  

Because teachers and children aren’t experts in caring for unborn/baby chicks, these chicks often end up very sick or dying before birth. Sometimes their organs stick to the sides of shells because their eggs weren’t properly rotated, which is what mother hens do. Or they hatch at the weekend with no-one around to care for them.

The rehoming of these chicks once they are no longer ‘cute’ and have grown out of their small incubators is difficult too. Hens are easier to rehome as they produce eggs, but males are seen as useless and will either be killed or sold to the meat industry. I volunteer on a farm and have seen firsthand the difficulties with rehoming. We have had poultry thrown over fences and abandoned in desperation. 

My sister works in a nursery and year after year has had to rehome the chickens and makes it her mission to do so. Despite warning colleagues of the implications of buying hatchlings, they continue to buy into the industry and often discuss snapping the necks of the chicks to dispose of them when they feel they have no other options.

These children aren’t taught that the chickens they handle could be thrown into meat grinders (alive), or that my sister has to rehome them to save their lives.

These programmes teach children the wrong lesson - that animals are disposable.

My goal is to prevent schools and facilities from purchasing chicks, when they have no idea how to care for them.

That’s why I’m calling for the government to write to schools, to warn on the dangers of running hatching programs and to advise schools not to run them unless they can care for these chicks as they age. I hope they will recommend a better and more humane solution to teach children about animals than having hatching projects.

*DISCLAIMER* the image of used for this petition is not my own. I have just used it to emphasise what happens to the chicks in the meat industry. It is a very REAL picture however.

Please sign and share my petition - let’s teach children to value animal life!