Seven cockerels abandoned in a small box outside a Fenland home
The RSPCA is appealing for information after seven adult cockerels were abandoned in a cardboard box on the driveway of a home in Fenland.
The concerned householder discovered the box on the driveway of their home in Coldham.
The householder did not open the box in case the occupants escaped but realising there were animals inside they drove to the RSPCA Block Fen Animal Centre for help.
Block Fen manager Sally Jones said: “The poor homeowner arrived at the centre on the morning of Thursday(6) with this box which was clearly very heavy - we opened it up and to our shock we discovered there were seven fully grown cockerels of traditional or heritage breed types.
“The box was far too small for so many large birds and a couple had blood on them as they had clearly started to fight with each other in such a cramped space.
“I am appalled that someone has just abandoned these poor boys - and the way in which they did it.
“Thankfully the householder did the right thing and contacted us - but no matter what the reason, abandoning an animal alone and in a situation like this is never okay. There is no guarantee that an abandoned animal will be found or not become hurt or lost.
“If someone is struggling to cope, there are lots of charities who could help and we would urge you to ask for help.
“If anyone has any information regarding the cockerels we would ask them to contact the RSPCA appeal line on 0300 123 8018. The cardboard box these birds were found in had some writing on the side which stated it was for some flat pack linen bar stools - if this rings a bell with anyone we would urge them to contact us.”
RSPCA Inspector Rebecca Harper added: “Concerns were raised during lockdown about the increase in pet acquisition and ownership, and we feared that people would soon lose interest and start to hand their animals over once life started to return to normal.
“For those people who are still thinking about taking on hens - we would offer this advice to them.
“If people are going to hatch fertilised eggs - expect some to be cockerels and pre-plan what you are going to do with them.
“If you are living in an area which allows you to have cockerels, please consider adopting one to keep with your hens - they help prevent fighting or any hierarchy issues within the group, and can make it easier to introduce new hens without problem; they also act as first line of defence/alarm if a fox or other predators are in the area.
“If people are going to hatch eggs please can they consider concentrating on pure breeds - this way it makes it easier for the cockerels to be sold or rehomed, as there is more demand for them compared to mixed or cross breeds”
The birds were initially cared for at the centre and have now been transferred to Page’s Poultry and we are grateful to them for taking the cockerels into their care.
To help the RSPCA continue rescuing, rehabilitating and rehoming animals in desperate need of care please visit our website or call our donation line on 0300 123 8181