Air Partner's Freight Division teamed up with Animal Place, a farm animal rescue organization, to transport 1,150 hens from northern California to sanctuaries on the U.S. East Coast.The hens were part of a flock of 3,000 that was saved from slaughter after becoming unproductive at the California egg-laying farm where they had lived.
"We scheduled a red-eye flight so the ladies could wake up refreshed in the Empire State," joked Chris Armstrong, freight director for Air Partner North America. "Because the chickens slept through most of the flight, they didn't need to eat or drink during those hours, and the whole experience was much less stressful for them. They've been through enough already."
While on the farm, the chicks had their beaks clipped and were kept in cramped cages. They arrived at Animal Place covered in parasites, and they were kept at Animal Place's Grass Valley location, where they received veterinary care. Because Animal Place is not equipped to maintain so many birds permanently, the organization found homes for them at nearby sanctuaries and with partners in New York.
"In over 50 years of experience, we have shipped all manner of freight, but I have to say, this was certainly one of our more interesting cargos," said Phil Mathews, president of Air Partner North America. "While these birds don't match our normal clientele of business and leisure travelers, we were more than happy to give them a lift to their new home."