HONOLULU (KHON2) — A bill to manage the feral chicken population is moving through the legislative session, but the departments that would be tasked with coming up with the solution said the proposal should not fall under their purview.
Lawmakers said the noise and the droppings from feral chickens are a public health hazard, and they said it is now time to come up with a plan to control the population.
Kailua resident Alber Hornyak said, “Every morning like I am trying to sleep in and all I could hear are the roosters just like waking me up all of the time.”
Meanwhile, Jerry Wilhelmy who lives in town said his property does not face issues with feral chickens, but he has heard about them wreaking havoc in people’s yards.
Wilhelmy said, “I don’t mind them around this park and things like that, I think in certain local neighborhoods it’s more of a problem.”
Senate Bill 2195 is open-ended, there is still no price tag or an exact plan as to how the state would control the population of feral chickens.
The bill was amended and removed a contraceptive strategy from the language. For now only stating, “develop humane and cost-effective methods to manage the population of feral chickens in urban and suburban areas.”
The bill proposes a five-year pilot program, the counties would collaborate with the Department of Agriculture and the Department of Land and Natural Resources.
The Department of Agriculture Deputy to the Chair Morris Atta testified against the bill during a House Finance Committee hearing.
“We stand with our testimony in opposition to this measure,” Atta said. “Primarily because the department does not manage or seek feral animals and it is not set up to do that typically it is a function of the counties because it’s viewed as a nuisance.”
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The bill has passed three initial readings in the Senate and two readings in the House, it recently passed the finance committee.