Some 1,000 chicks which were abandoned in the UK recently have been ‘put to sleep’ due to a case of bird flu close to where they were found.
The Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (RSPCA) confirmed that the surviving abandoned birds had to be humanely put down.
On Friday, February 17, the animal welfare charity was called by members of the public who spotted around 1,000 little chicks running around a field in Crowland, near Peterborough in the UK.
The RSPCA has launched an investigation and is working with a commercial chick breeder in the area to find out who abandoned the baby birds in the field.
Officers from the charity were called to the scene to rescue the day-old birds, with some of them already dead or dying when they arrived, according to RSPCA Inspector Justin Stubbs.
I have never seen anything like it, it was just a sea of yellow. And the noise was unbelievable.
The majority of the abandoned birds did not appear to be suffering and were collected in cardboard boxes, he added.
It is believed the birds came from a commercial chick producer nearby and may have been abandoned by a third-party. The producer is fully co-operating and assisting the RSPCA with their investigations.
“The breeder came to the scene to collect the surviving birds and take them back to their unit.
“These tiny birds wouldn’t have survived long out on their own at such a young age and in such unpredictable weather conditions.
For someone to dump these vulnerable chicks is unbelievable.
The RSPCA Inspector thanked all the members of the public who teamed together to help round up all the birds and confine them in boxes where they could huddle together for warmth.