We have some sad news to share with you. Little Miss Sunshine, the famous hen who called Edgar’s Mission Farm Animal Sanctuary in Australia her home, has passed away.

Little Miss Sunshine spent the first 18 months of her life confined in a tiny battery cage on an industrial egg laying farm. But her life took a surprising turn in 2013 when the farmer decided to throw in the towel on his exploitative chicken business, and instead, let all 1,081 chickens swap life in a cage for freedom at Edgar’s Mission. Thanks to this farmer’s decision, Little Miss Sunshine was able to become an ambassador for her kind.

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If you’ve ever watched an episode of Little Miss Sunshine Bird Brain (her very own TV program on the Edgar’s Mission blog) you know how much she loved playing games. And as you may remember, Little Miss Sunshine also became a spokesperson for battery hens by starring in the creative video campaign called, “That Ain’t No Way to Treat a Lady,” created by animal protection nonprofit Animals Australia. Little Miss Sunshine was so cherished that Edgar’s Mission even threw her a birthday party, complete with a giant cake. Instead of being exploited for her eggs, this hen was celebrated for her wit, intelligence, and loving nature at Edgar’s Mission.

Many people don’t realize this, but hens are extremely intelligent. Research has shown that hens possess certain perception and memory skills and they are supposedly more intelligent than some farmyard and domesticated animals, as well as human toddlers. Through the Little Miss Sunshine show, the team at Edgar’s Mission was able to share these unique skills with the world. A few episodes featured her picking out a picture of a chicken from a jumbled farmyard lineup, correctly identifying when an object had been removed. She would also ring a doorbell before entering a room, showing an impressive array of perceptive processes.

Although Little Miss Sunshine is no longer with us, her impact will be felt for years to come. Please share this video in her memory and encourage others to see chickens as the someones they truly are – not somethings.

To learn more about what life is like for chickens in the egg industry, click here. 

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If you’d like to support Edgar’s Mission and the amazing work they do on behalf of farm animals, click here.

Lead image source: Edgar’s Mission