Kauai Reinvents Free Range Chicken

Kauai Reinvents Free Range Chicken

Maui offered the chance to see a great many more chickens wandering around than I was was used to since my hippie parents stopped trying subsistence agriculture when I was a child. Once setting down in Kauai, the chicken issue grew exponentially. The buggers are literally everywhere. You’d think that you were in some kind of strange third world bazaar haggling one the price of a mule and tall sailing vessel, when in reality you’re just driving along the highway, trying not to hit one of the damned birds.

As I saw flock upon flock of chickens bopping around, pecking the ground, I was curious if these guys were the equivalent of Hindu cows, or if they ever just “disappeared”. I mean, there’s a great deal of free food wandering around the island, so do people take advantage of it?

Of course, this problem also brings up the fact as to who actually owns these chickens? Sure, if they’re near a house, then they are probably belonging to the folks there, but what about the ones that are in the national parks or kickin’ it by the airport?

I suppose this ultimately isn’t our problem as I’m not here long enough to deal with it and we really don’t have the ability to cook a chicken in our “shitchen” where we’re staying that can hardly even boil water. Just keep in mind that if you’re wandering around Kauai, there are no snakes on the island and all that shuffling in the bushes is a hen and chicks scratching up lunch.

7 Replies to “Kauai Reinvents Free Range Chicken”

  1. Yeah, many of us have a love-sort of annoyed with relationship with these feathered friends. “Get the cluck out of here!” is a common cry for those who find them outside the bedroom window crowing at wee morning hours.” They are beautiful and oh sooo cute when tiny chicks, yet there is health concern as well with droppings all over. What to do? Ship them to a nearby atoll?

    1. I vote for a large dinner. I mean, I can’t believe how many flocks there are on Kauai. It’s like they outnumber the humans 1000 to 1.

    2. Oh yeah, I should probably update this with what I found on Wikipedia which was grabbed from here:

      “Hurricane Iniki may have caused an indirect change in Kauaʻi’s ecosystem. Some say a chicken farm was destroyed, causing all of the chickens to roam free that one may see today. Others say that sugarcane plantation laborers in the late 1800s and early 1900s brought and raised chickens (for eating and cockfighting) and many got loose over the years and multiplied. Whatever their original source, Kauai is now home to thousands of wild roosters and hens, roaming the island with few natural predators. Wild roosters have been known to disturb evening quiet time at odd hours with their crowing. Currently, the Humane Society is investigating the death of large numbers of Kauai chickens. The deaths are most likely due to bacterial infections caused by over-population.”

    3. I am staying at Hanalei Bay resort. I have been coming here for the past 5 years. This time they have a lot of roosters around the property. Outside my door this morning I countred 10 roosters. I think the island should introduce one male fox. This little fellow would take care of the rooster population for a while.

    4. i think chickens n roosters r cute and are nice to hav around. the really do make great pets. :)

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