Letter for Friday, February 24, 2023
Don’t feed chickens
Start Free AccountGet access to 10 premium stories every month for FREE!
Already a Subscriber?Current print subscriber? Activate your complimentary Digital account.
Subscribe NowChoose a package that suits your preferences.
Since your neighbor is apparently new to the island they are unaware of the food chain.
1 What the chickens don’t eat, critters lower on the food chain will clean up the left overs.
2 Your neighbor is inviting rats to join in for the free food.
3 Or worst case, pigs join the party.
I also live in Kalaheo, on the makai side. Our neighborhood is free of chickens for the most part. No one feeds them and if one or two do wander in they’re chased out quickly. I do go up to the Kukuiolono golf course and park and take up a few scraps, as do others. It’s a good option if you have a hankering to feed them. There are always options. It’s unfortunate that our sometimes excessive need to nurture also leads to anti-social behavior.
Bird flu (Avian influenza) (H5N1) is rapidly spreading world-wide by migratory birds and has now infected mammals including bears causing blindness, minks (hundreds of thousands have been culled in Europe), foxes, raccoons (respiratory failure), dolfins, seals, sea lions (600 in Peru), humans (rarely but 56% fatality) and lastly all bird species.
The reason for the huge increase in egg prices is the hundreds of millions of laying hens, not to mention eating chickens, that have had to have been culled (killed) to save other bird farms. The bird flu is highly infectious (if one bird on a farm becomes infected the entire flock will die in a matter of days) and fatal for most bird species. It is spread via a birds feces and the consumption of infected birds by scavengers.
When infected migratory birds arrive on the Hawaiian Islands, the inevitable spread of H5N1 to the Islands chicken populations will be 100% fatal. The new strains of H5N1 can and will kill monk seals, dolfins, feral cats, pigs, most of the spectacular native bird species, and eventually humans. H5N1 in immunocompromized humans is nearly always fatal, and in healthy humans 56% fatality rates are seen. Bird flu so far is not spread by human to human contact. Avian influenza in humans will make the Covid19 pandemic look mild. There is a vaccine, but only few hunderd thousand doses at present.
In conclusion, do not feed the feral chickens! The stench from millions of dead chicken carcasses will overwhelm the senses….and devastate the native bird populations.