A stray chicken that startled drivers on the Bay Bridge this morning and was featured in countless jokes on social media has been taken to an Oakland animal shelter and might be reclaimed by its owner, Oakland Animal Services officials said this afternoon.
CHP officers captured the bird around 10 a.m., around four hours after drivers began reporting chicken-sightings in traffic east of the Toll Plaza, according to CHP Officer Sean Wilkenfeld.
The CHP took the chicken to the Berkeley Animal Services shelter, which then transferred it to Oakland, shelter manager Tiana Scott confirmed this afternoon.
“We do have the chicken in our custody and a potential owner has called us,” Scott said.
The chicken, which appears to be a hen, is being kept in an outside coop next door to two younger chickens, Scott said.
“It looks very healthy,” Scott said. “It’s walking around and talking a lot. It’s a vibrant chicken, well fleshed.”
The owner will have to provide pictures or vaccination records or other records demonstrating custody before they can reclaim the chicken. If the owner does not claim the bird, Scott said it will be available for adoption to those who live in areas where chickens are legal.
Backyard chickens are legal under Oakland city ordinances but roosters are not.
Scott said the shelter handles more chickens than residents probably realize, but they are usually taken in by rescue groups.
“The chicken will have a good outcome no matter what,” Scott said.