Fate of Auckland roundabout chickens unknown video

JAMES PASLEY/Stuff.co.nz

John Bellingham has raised concerns over the disappearance of more than 20 chickens at his local roundabout.

A flock of chickens have been removed from a busy Auckland intersection - but their fate is unknown.

John Bellingham, who has lived in Orakei since 1964, said he wanted to know why several dozen hens and roosters which populated Orakei Rd and Ngapipi Rd intersection had gone missing.

The chickens were an iconic sight at the busy roundabout for years.

John Bellingham wants to know what happened to his neighbourhood's urban chickens.
JAMES PASLEY/FAIRFAX NZ

John Bellingham wants to know what happened to his neighbourhood's urban chickens.

"It was just a great joy we found," Bellingham said.

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The bush located beside the east Auckland roundabout is where the chickens used to live.
JAMES PASLEY/FAIRFAX NZ

The bush located beside the east Auckland roundabout is where the chickens used to live.

"They were delightful. The roosters were brilliantly orange or red. The chickens were black.

"I've seen them on the fence watching the traffic go by, and I've seen them in high in grassy paddocks."

Bellingham said another resident had started a petition to get rid of the poultry earlier this year, because the roosters' crowing had ruined their sleep.

Auckland Council head of operational management and maintenance Agnes McCormack said the chickens were removed over three nights last month after the council received a number of noise complaints from residents in the area, who were being woken at 3am by the roosters.

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Auckland Council had not confirmed whether the chickens were dead or alive.

Iwi Ngati Whatua Orakei own the land.

"We understand the chickens were introduced by the landowner a number of years ago as a form of weed management. Over time they bred and significantly increased in number."

People had also been dumping unwanted roosters in the area, McCormack said.

Auckland Council's animal management bylaw banned roosters in urban areas.

There were also restrictions on the number of chickens allowed to be kept in an urban area and how they were kept, McCormack said.

"There is also a significant health and safety risk to drivers having the birds running freely around the roads."

However, Bellingham didn't think the poultry posed any danger.

"I've seen dead pukeko, but I never saw a chicken get killed and I never saw a dead one on the road. It's a roundabout so everyone had to be careful anyway." 

 - Stuff

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