Discuss as:

Anonymous tip leads authorities to 50,000 dying chickens near Modesto

Acting on an anonymous tip, authorities discovered nearly 50,000 abandoned chickens at an egg farm just south of Modesto, Calif. The hens hadn’t been fed for two weeks, the Modesto Bee reported, and nearly all were so sick they had to be euthanized.

The birds’ carcasses were sent to a landfill; about 2,000 surviving hens were sent to sanctuaries where they are being treated and will be adopted out as companions.

A&L Poultry, the owner of the abandoned egg farm, issued an apology by way of Fox40, saying the company was shutting down its egg production.


The company stated the chickens were abandoned by accident: “An attempt to arrange for delivery of the chickens to a third party in order to avoid the usual business practice of euthanizing the chickens resulted in an unacceptable situation A&L Poultry did not intend, and profoundly regrets.”

Annette Patton, the executive director of Stanislaus Animal Services Agency, told the Modesto Bee that she will ask the Stanislaus County district attorney’s office next week to prosecute the owner of A&L Poultry, Andy Keung Cheung.

A&L Poultry produced between 12.5 million and 15 million eggs a year, which, although a large number, represents a fraction of the egg production industry in that county, the Modesto Bee reported.

More content from msnbc.com and NBC News