Photo by Mary Kelly
In February 2000, United Poultry Concerns launched a vigorous national campaign to prevent the hatchery exhibit from opening, followed by our national effort to close down the hatchery after it opened despite hundreds of protest letters. On April 22, 2000, United Poultry Concerns and Animal Advocates of Pittsburgh held an all-day Earth Day protest and candlelight Vigil at the Carnegie Science Center. We handed out educational leaflets to Carnegie patrons under the name of Citizens Against the Carnegie Chick Hatchery which explained why "a mechanical hatchery does not illustrate the natural life of chickens." We urged patrons to protest the hatchery for being unnatural, cruel, and misleading.
Photo by Jim Dunn
The birds were being hatched on a plastic grid in a desolate mechanical display supposed to show "the miracle of birth," "natural systems," and, most bizarrely, "where eggs come from," in a noisy carnival atmosphere. In a letter published in the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review (March 14, 2000), United Poultry Concerns president Karen Davis said that the hatchery "should be closed down." We are pleased to report that our goal has been reached. We thank everyone who contacted the Carnegie Science Center urging that the chick hatchery be canceled. We are grateful for the center's decision.