Chicken lovers team up to save feathered threesome


Roosters now have happy home after being stranded in Lake View Village

by: SUBMITTED PHOTO: ELAINE TAN - The three lost roosters showed great togetherness during their sojourn in Lake View Village. Only an occasional dog could break up this chicken pack.Three Little Roosters

All in the square

The poor guys are lost

It seems so unfair

One of the most unlikely places to find three roosters standing around in Lake Oswego would be Lake View Village, but it happened last Friday.

Hundreds of people encountered the chickens on their way to drink coffee, get yogurt or dine at a restaurant, and their reaction was invariably surprise, delight and, often, pulling out a phone camera to take a picture of this unusual event.

Longtime Lake Oswego resident Dave Schramm was grabbing a cup of coffee at Peet’s when he spied the feathered trio.

“They were walking around as if they were saying, ‘As long as you people leave us alone we’ll let you stay,’” Schramm said.

And passers-by always asked, “Where did they come from?”by: SUBMITTED PHOTO - Dave Schramm gives a big smile after discovering three roosters in front of Peets Coffee in Lake View Village.The roosters managed to surprise a lot of people.

There was no answer. This may always remain the Mystery of the Three Roosters. They were large, especially one big boy, rather dirty with untrimmed feathers on their feet and they really hung together, moving a few yards only when dogs tried to sniff them.

The bigger mystery was, “What would become of them?”

Thanks to Elaine Tan, who happened to be in the area getting a cup of coffee, this was a chicken story with a happy ending. She stuck with the roosters from the moment she saw them at 10:30 a.m. until they were shooed into a cardboard box and taken for boarding at the home of a bird lover. Tan made sure the birds didn’t go out into traffic, fed them with donated bread from St. Honoré Bakery and made sure that dogs did not get too close. Tan was out there nearly five hours, but she didn’t budge until she knew the chickens would be OK.

“I don’t love chickens,” Tan said. “I love animals.”

While assuring the safety of the roosters, Tan used her cellphone to try to get help from some obvious sources like the police and the Portland Audubon Society. No luck. The dozens of people passing by only stopped, gaped, laughed, took photos and moved on. She did get some coffee delivered while on her vigil by “three sweet little boys.”

But Tan’s tenacity finally paid off. Around 3 o’clock some true helpers showed up. Jackie Clee, who had fond childhood memories of her pet chicken, and Nicole Hsiao, who said, “I was shopping until I saw these beautiful chickens,” then got a big cardboard box to put them in. As the rooster-rescue operation shaped up, other chicken-minded people drifted along until a pretty good evacuation plan fell into place. They would somehow get the roosters into the big box and load them up in Clee’s car.

The sticking point was, “How do you get three chickens into a box?” There was not a chicken grabber in the bunch, but someone came up with the idea of using blankets to funnel them into the box. The action (and humorous) high point came when people running around with blankets tried to corral the birds, but the roosters easily kept shooting between gaps in the blankets.

Fortunately, a hero showed up. Mardic Price of West Linn came out of Peet’s Coffee and noticed the chickens and the crowd, and as a person who was raised on a farm she knew exactly what to do: “You got to get them by the tail feathers and pick them up.” The roosters squawked loudly when Price went to work, but in a few seconds the three birds were in the box.

Joy surged through the crowd, and Price’s praises were loudly sung by Kellee Beaudry, who shouted, “You are awesome! You are a chicken wrangler! My god, that was impressive!”

The birds spent a pleasant night and day with the Clee family and soon found a home sweet home with Clee’s bird-loving farmer friend in Canby.

“She offered to give the roosters a good home on her farm, and my husband and sons drove them out on Sunday morning,” Clee said. “It looks like a great place for them, and they’ll live happily ever after with the ducks and many other chickens.” Happily ever after. You can’t ask for more than that.