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About 1,500 hens have been rescued from a California factory farm and are on their way to a sanctuary for chickens.

Gary Smith, a spokesman for the hen sanctuary said the chickens were taken Thursday morning from a farm in the Central Valley. The hens are between 1 and 2 years of age, and too old to be productive egg layers.

Volunteers with Animal Place in Vacaville will clean and rehabilitate the hens and get them ready for adoption.

Smith said hens make wonderful pets. They adapt quickly to life as regular, free-roaming hens.

Animal Place works with factories to take in older hens that would otherwise have been gassed or buried.