NFU Mutual Smallholding Insurance

Author Topic: Transporting alot of hens in van  (Read 214 times)


  • Joined Jan 2020
Transporting alot of hens in van
« on: January 15, 2020, 03:15:39 pm »
Looking for some advice on transporting your own point of lay hens. Getting 350 hens and we live on an island so having to collect the point of lay hens on mainland. We have 30 large industry crates so will have 12 hens per crate.
We are hiring a long wheel base van to transport them in, the journey time will be 5 hours.
We will be stopping every 30 minutes and open sliding door and back door to ensure enough air for them, then do another 30 minutes then same again until we get home.
 We will be driving slowly to ensure the least amount of vibrations on road. We are collecting them start of march so ideal for lower temperatures outside as it's not height of summer.

Looking for advice on ideal temperature/ temperature control measures to ensure the birds are happy as they can be during transit, I have a battery powered fan which could go at the back of van to improve air circulation.and any other advice suggested for the transit of our POL birds.

I look forward to your feedback.
Many thanks
Voss Electric Fence


  • Joined May 2015
  • Aberdeenshire
Re: Transporting alot of hens in van
« Reply #1 on: January 16, 2020, 05:48:27 pm »
Would it be worth contacting someone at the BHWT for advice?  I'm guessing they do this regularly with the "rescue" hens that are transported up and down the country to rehoming points so they may well be able to point you in the right direction.
Excellence is the result of caring more than others think is wise, risking more than others think is safe, dreaming more than others think is practical and expecting more than others think is possible.


  • Joined May 2016
Re: Transporting alot of hens in van
« Reply #2 on: January 30, 2020, 09:15:09 am »
How about hiring an open-back / tipper van instead?  Birds moved commercially are often in open-sided trucks.

The seller may also have advice and experience of moving birds.

I don't think you need to drive at a different speed to normal.  Just go as carefully as you would normally.


  • Joined Feb 2012
Re: Transporting alot of hens in van
« Reply #3 on: January 30, 2020, 10:35:35 am »

Technically you need a transport certificate the same as for moving sheep, pigs etc. but I don't know anyone with a poultry one  :thinking:

I don't think you need to stop every 30 minutes. Nor do I think you need to drive slowly. You just need to drive carefully. You need to pack the crates in so they don't move. Do they have a floor? Don't overfill the crates.  Get a van without a bulk head so you can have circulation from cab to the rear. You can also see what is happening in the back. Wrap up warm so you can drive without the heaters on and windows open a bit.

If you are buying healthy hens they should be fine.


  • Joined Dec 2011
  • Gascony, France
Re: Transporting alot of hens in van
« Reply #4 on: January 30, 2020, 10:58:31 am »
There certainly won't be enough air circulation in a long wheelbase van, even with a fan, for that many chickens. We moved 28 with a high output roof extractor which was coupled to a large leisure battery on the boat to avoid flattening the van battery. They move a lot of chickens around here and they are all in open sided trucks with a journey time of less than an hour. You will have to add loading and unloading time as well, so the total may be 7 hours. Best move them at night if possible as they will be quiet and cooler.

Could you buy chicks instead?


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