Pluck

Myth of the L.A. Highway Chickens

A traffic bulletin about chickens roaming a Los Angeles highway last week may prove a local urban legend true: the myth of the highway chickens. It all began when a poultry truck crashed and flipped over in 1969, freeing at least 200 chickens otherwise doomed to slaughter. The chickens became an institution: An actress wrote a screenplay about them, a video game appeared that challenged players to escort the birds across the road, and a local hotel owner put the chickens on her stationary. An elderly widow dubbed "the Chicken Lady" fed and cared for the colony until 1976, when city officials begged her to let them capture the birds. But eight years later, the chickens reappeared. A transportation spokesman said, "we didn't get them all back in '76. I guess they're like rabbits—get all but two and you're still in trouble."