My days almost always include some time sipping and staring from my balcony. Yesterday morning I was too lazy to walk (I’m soooo off of my walking routine right now it’s ridiculous), so I sat in the breeze, sipped my coffee and watched chickens taking over our parking lot. Today, I listened to them cackle complaints at the rain, which has been going on all day.
I don’t know what this says about me, but these feral fowl fascinate me: so much so that I invested way too many minutes googling Guam chickens. Apparently, they’ve become a nuisance and have managed to hatch some headlines. One of my favorite quotes comes from a 2021 article in The Guam Daily Post, which focused on the demand for authorities to contain chicken shenanigans.
Mangilao Mayor Allan Ungacta complained, “How do you police chickens? … Do we tell them [citizens] not to go catch a chicken because that’s private property? That’s what I want to know now. How do we police chickens? We police the stray dogs, the feral pig, the stray cats and then now you got chickens too.” (for more on this check out Chicken article)
Hunting birds here is actually a bigger deal than temporarily trespassing on private property to catch your Sunday roast. Besides stray pigs, dogs, cats and chickens, we also have an issue with the prolific, egg-feasting brown snake (accidentally brought onto the island via ships). Since the brown snake population decimated the local bird population, causing some species to go extinct, it’s agains the law to kill birds.
But, the chickens are thriving, and just this week legislation was discussed on making it legal to kill wild poultry (don’t know what the final verdict was). I’m guessing by all the chicken being grilled at fiesta barbecues that perhaps folks aren’t really concerned about the legalities of catching these chickens.
I, for one, hope they’re still protected because I am totally entertained by them, and I’ve come to realize they’re not as stupid as I thought they were. I have yet to see chicken roadkill. I witnessed a few almost get hit while crossing our busiest street, but midway through they saw incoming traffic, did a 180 and hauled feathers safely back to the curb.
Watching chickens run also gives me joy — only two feet and no arms to pump makes it funny (because, apparently, I’m also cruel).
So while I won’t give up eggs and KFC, I have developed a whole new love and respect for chickens. Hahaha and on cue: a rooster just made it clear he’s not happy with my diet.