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Posted: Thursday, July 17th, 2008 4:39 AM HST

Big island animal rights activist aims to rescue farm hens

By Associated Press

HONOMU, Hawaii (AP) _ A Big Island animal rights activist is hoping to save thousands of chickens from slaughter when Hawaiian Fresh Egg Farm near Waimea closes later this year.

Tony Marasia, who is a vegan, doesn't have the resources to buy all 8,000 hens currently left at the farm.

But he's hoping that people will be willing to step up and adopt a few.

The 33-year-old thinks of the hens as friends or individuals, rather than pets or animals.

Marasia says two farm hens he recently rescued, Meepa and Beepa, have personalities. Meepa likes to sing and Beepa is the sunbather.

Hawaiian Fresh Farm Eggs is winding down production and is looking to close down in October.

Vegans swear off eating animals and animal products, including seafood and eggs.

(Copyright 2008 Associated Press. All rights reserved)

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