Sponsor a Precious UPC Sanctuary Resident

Photo by Karen Davis


Juniper, who in this picture is perched with her rooster friend Brandy Alexander in one of our trees, is one of 11 hens we adopted from the Norfolk Department of Health laboratory in the fall of 2020. Although these hens lived in cages before being brought to United Poultry Concerns, they quickly adapted to our world of trees, bushes, soil and sunlight. With her sisters and brothers Juniper soaks up the sun and dustbathes to her heart’s content. I took this photo as she and Brandy Alexander were settling down for the night one evening in October. – Karen Davis

Rupert and Dear Hen
Photo by Karen Davis

We adopted Rupert from Elke Romer in Pennsylvania. He was abandoned and walked right up to her and let her pick him up on the road. Elke made a 10-hour roundtrip drive to bring him to our sanctuary on September 26, 2020. Rupert was under a year old, probably born in the Spring, and whoever had him probably thought he was a hen until he started crowing, and then they abandoned him. We placed Rupert in his own predator-proof yard with a rescued hen we named Dear Hen, and they are a very happy couple with a nice house, plenty of straw, and several perches. He especially likes to perch right outside my office window where we can communicate throughout the day. – Karen Davis

Penny Lane
Photo by Karen Davis


I always know when Penny Lane is behind me in the chicken yard because she has a distinctive murmuring voice like no other. We adopted her in April 2018 after she was found by Maryland resident Jane Hawkins, who kept her for more than a month after learning about United Poultry Concerns from our veterinarian in Virginia. Penny Lane was severely debeaked by whoever had her first. But she’s more than a survivor. She trots about everywhere in our 12,000-square-foot predator-proof sanctuary yard. Penny Lane is a very independent hen who fits in with everyone she chooses to associate with. I took this photo of her in late 2020. – Karen Davis

Myrna the hen
Photo by Rich Cundari

Myrna is one of 50 hens and roosters we adopted from a cockfighting raid in Virginia Beach in July 2018. She lives very happily in our predator-proof sanctuary with her sister hens, and Rowdy the rooster is a constant companion of hers. Myrna dashes about the yard during the day, and she loves dustbathing and sunshine. She sleeps in a tree each night with Rowdy and the other hens who share their area together. She's a very happy and healthy hen, and we love having her with us.

Reginald the duck
Photo by Karen Davis

We adopted Reginald, Daryl, Jewel, and Jamaica on February 19, 2018 from a hoarding situation in Virginia. A University of Virginia student rescued these ducks and brought them to our sanctuary where they are thriving. This photo shows Reginald in the foreground, with Jewel and Daryl behind him. We had to place the female duck, Jamaica, in her own yard due to the three male ducks’ eagerness to mate with her nonstop. Now, they all converse through the wire fence and are in constant contact with each other and Jamaica is safe.

Photo by Davida G. Breier

On a dark afternoon in November 2002, Frankincense the peacock appeared voluntarily at our sanctuary, and he’s lived here ever since, meowing like a Cat of the Baskervilles, doing his amazing horn calls, and displaying his fabulous feathers to the unfazed chickens. Until September 2014, Frankincense perched high in our front-yard cedar trees each night, but during that summer, we enclosed our entire sanctuary yard inside a gigantic predator-proof aviary and, not wanting to exclude Frankincense and also wanting to protect him and have him with us, we lured him into the aviary with a trail of peanuts through the gate. He’s been a happy “prisoner” ever since, with plenty of room to roam all day, and he can still perch high at night but instead of a tree, it’s at the top of a tall coop next to our backdoor.

angelica and friends
Photo by Karen Davis

Angelica is one of the 5 Sentinel Angelica hens whom we adopted from a laboratory in Norfolk, Virginia in September 2013. Angelica and her sisters are frisky, friendly hens who love visitors and whose shyness quickly vanished once they arrived at our sanctuary and, for the first time in their lives, were let out of cages to walk on the ground, fly up to perches, and run around to their hearts’ content. They live with Marilyn the “game” hen, who welcomed them immediately, and Nicholas, the rooster, who adores them all.

marilyn the cockfighting hen
Photo by Davida G. Breier

Marilyn is one of 56 lucky chickens whom we welcomed into our sanctuary in January 2009. They were rescued from a cockfighting operation in Olive Branch, Mississippi and trucked in individual boxes to our Virginia sanctuary over a two-day period. On Sunday morning, January 25, the truck pulled into our yard, and we carefully unloaded 54 hens and two roosters. They were wild with excitement, hunger and thirst as they ate and drank greedily, and met their new friends. We quickly built a spacious new enclosure – yard and house – especially for Marilyn and her “cockfighting” flock mates. They have lived happily together at UPC ever since, our Misses-sippi and Mr-sippi friends.

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