Hens to be rehomed after driveway delivery drama

Twelve live chickens sealed inside cardboard boxes were found dumped on the side of a road, the RSPCA has said.

The charity said it believed the birds were ordered as part of a "starter set" by a person who wanted to keep hens.

But a spokesperson said they suspected the animals were ditched on Fernlea Grove in Golcar, near Huddersfield, by the delivery driver.

Animal rescue officer Ollie Wilkes said it was "a really odd discovery" but that the hens were in good health.

The birds were found by a homeowner along with a large bag of feed and a plastic feeder on 10 November.

CCTV footage in the area captured a van parking and a person stepping out to leave the birds on a driveway, the RSPCA said.

Mr Wilkes collected the chickens and took them to the charity's South Yorkshire Animal Centre at Bawtry.

"It was a really odd discovery as it doesn't look like these birds were abandoned - I suspect they were being delivered to someone, but we don't know for sure," he said.

"It does look like a delivery that has gone wrong for whatever reason, but we couldn't trace it back as there was no documentation in the boxes.

"It's a real mystery, but fortunately the chickens were only on the driveway for a short amount of time and they are doing fine."

Four of the birds have been rehomed and the other eight are ready to be adopted.

An RSPCA spokesperson advised people to collect any hens they buy in person, rather than having them delivered, which they said could cause the animals to be stressed.