Wild Chickens Roam San Juan Bautista.

The small california town of San Juan Bautista (pop. 1549) is wrestling with this question: Should the chicken hit the road?

The small town, with its Mission San Juan Bautista made famous by Alfred Hitchcock's Vertigo, is grappling with wild chickens strutting down its downtown sidewalks and being fed by tourists and locals alike.

Now, the city council is considering a resolution to made feeding the feral chickens illegal:

"It's a policy issue the council is wrestling with," said City Manager Janice McClintock, who stepped into the long-simmering chicken dispute as soon as she started her job just five weeks ago. "Both the pro-chicken and the anti-chicken forces make some good points."

In a town of fewer than 2,000, almost everyone has a well-defined point of view when it comes to the chickens. The pro-chicken forces in this hamlet 45 miles south of San Jose talk up civic identity; the anti-chicken forces mutter darkly about bird flu. The boosters point to delighted tourists; the critics point to speckled sidewalks.

Very interesting article at the LA Times: Link

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Ofcourse its a risk. Its all a matter of temperature. once the US gets warner (1-3 months) - the bird flu will hit, no doubt about it.
In the recent months, I am monitoring bird flu events using this url:
http://newzingo.com/US/tag/bird%2520flu. the number of new cases is alarmingly increasing. its in the stage where linear growth becomes logarithmic one.
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I really doubt this is a serious bird flu risk. Transmissions in Asia have mostly occurred with high densities of both bird and human populations packed together. A few chickens in a town of 2000 isn't terribly similar - as long as nobody's planning to catch them and eat them undercooked.
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Excuse me? Civic identity? I think not. Unless you want the civic identity of being the central source of the bird flu's profligation into the U.S.
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