BERTIE COUNTY -

A massive fire destroyed a chicken house in Bertie County Monday, killing tens of thousands of chickens.

The fire happened at Tom Moore Farm at 521 Moore Road east of Kelford.

The farm has four chicken houses, but one of them caught fire some time between 10 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. Monday, workers at the farm said. The building that was destroyed was housing about 27,000 chickens, all of which died.

The blaze burned the building to the ground in about 20 minutes. Workers said they didn't know what caused the fire.

Tom Moore Farm is a supplier for Perdue Farms.

Julie Young, the corporate spokesperson for Perdue, said the company owned the chickens. Young added that although 27,000 chickens sounds like a lot, it's a small percentage of the total chickens produced each week. Prices for consumers at grocery stores will not be affected.

The owners of Tom Moore Farm have insurance.