Highway Worker Nabs PETA Award for Hen Rescue

Elizabeth Gardner Scooped Up Egg-Industry Victim Who'd Been Discarded Alongside the Bronx River Parkway

For Immediate Release:
June 20, 2019

David Perle 202-483-7382

New York – A Compassionate Action Award is on its way from PETA to Elizabeth Gardner, a highway worker who rescued a chicken from the side of the Bronx River Parkway on Thursday, June 13, and took her to Long Island Orchestrating for Nature (LION) founder and PETA Manager John Di Leonardo for care.

When Gardner found her, the hen—now named Elizabeth after her rescuer—was underweight, the end of her beak had been cut off, and she was missing most of her feathers, likely from being smashed up against the sides of a cramped metal battery cage along with scores of other hens on an egg farm. Now, under Di Leonardo’s care, her feathers are growing back. Once she’s recovered, she’ll be adopted by a compassionate PETA and LION supporter in Connecticut.

The hen, who likely fell from a transport truck, is a Red Star—a breed of hen that has been genetically manipulated by the egg industry to lay hundreds of eggs each year rather than the dozen or so that the species lays in nature. On egg farms, Red Star hens often die within a few years, and the ones who survive are sent to slaughter once their egg production wanes and they’re no longer profitable. Every person who goes vegan spares nearly 200 animals every year daily suffering and a terrifying death in today’s egg, meat, and dairy industries.

“Thanks to Elizabeth Gardner’s kindness, a little hen whose body had been used to the breaking point and who’d been left to die on the side of the road now has a new lease on life,” says Di Leonardo. “PETA and LION hope this story will inspire others to come to the aid of any animals in need—and to make a huge difference for hens and other animals simply by going vegan.”

Gardner will receive a framed certificate and some delicious vegan cookies.

PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to eat or abuse in any other way”—opposes speciesism, which is the human-supremacist worldview that other species are nothing more than commodities. The group offers free vegan starter kits, available here, which are full of delicious egg-free recipes.

For more information, please visit PETA.org.

For Media: Contact PETA's
Media Response Team.


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 Ingrid E. Newkirk

“Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights?” READ MORE

— Ingrid E. Newkirk, PETA President and co-author of Animalkind