Wild Key West Chickens to be Rounded Up

Posted on May 2, 2006

Bird flu fears may mean an end to freedom for the popular of wild chickens that live in Key West, Florida. The BBC reports that local officials have decided to round-up the birds for fear they could spread the bird flu disease. There are over 2,000 of the wild chickens that roam free in Key West.

The birds, which have had the run of Key West for more than 50 years, are one of the island town's most famous tourist attractions.

But local officials have decided to evict them over health concerns.

Although bird flu has not reached the US, Key West lies on a bird migration path, officials say.

Local officials on Tuesday approved a resolution to bar the free-roaming fowl from the town's streets and parks.

National Geographic also has an article about bird flu and the Key West chickens.

Update 4-22-19: The wild chickens were presumably evicted in 2006 over fears of the avian flu virus. However, they are still enjoying the island destination. They were still around to evacuated from Hurricane Irma in 2017 according to the Insider, which calls them "gypsy chickens." Also, this video from from 2017 shows several Key West chickens.

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