Rosa Parks chickens found dead, buried on campus

The Rosa Parks Elementary School chickens one day after they were born in April. The two lighter-colored chicks, in the back left corner, were the ones that were stolen. (One of them is hard to spot and appears more like a blur.) Photo: Tanya Stiller
The Rosa Parks Elementary School chickens one day after they were born in April. The two lighter-colored chicks, in the back left corner, were the ones that were stolen. (One of them is hard to spot and appears more like a blur.) Photo: Tanya Stiller

Two chickens that were stolen from an outdoor coop at Rosa Parks Elementary School earlier this month were found dead and buried in the school yard Tuesday, according to the school’s garden teacher.

Tanya Stiller wrote Berkeleyside late Tuesday afternoon with the update: “I just found the two chickens. They were killed, and buried on top of each other in the garden. I saw what looked like the back of a bird sticking up in a spot where neighboring cats sometimes do their dirty business. It looked like a cat had been scratching there, probably uncovering what it could smell. There was an old wooden garden sign, that kinda looked like a cross next to it. Clearly there was remorse.”

The chickens, named Chip and Daisy, were removed from an outdoor coop sometime during the first weekend of June, Stiller told Berkeleyside last week. They were part of a group of five chickens Stiller had been using as part of her curriculum to teach students about the birds’ life cycle.

Stiller, who has been working at Rosa Parks for seven years, said she received two grants — from the  Berkeley Public Schools Fund and a crowd-funding website called www.donorschoose.org — to set up a program earlier this year to study the life cycle of chickens, from the egg to adulthood. She said she thought adding animals to the garden program would create another way for students to connect with the natural world.


Stiller said four other Berkeley schools, John Muir and LeConte elementary schools, as well as Willard and King middle schools, also have chickens as part of their gardening programs.

Wednesday she said she hopes to find out more about why the chickens were taken and how they died: “I would love to have an anonymous note from whomever did this to explain what happened, and maybe even why.”

Anyone with information about what happened to the chickens can send an anonymous note to Berkeleyside, for publication, at tips@berkeleyside.com.

Related:
Thief steals 2 school chickens from Rosa Parks campus [06.07.13]
Pets abandoned in Tilden can become dinner for predators (05.02.13)
Podcast: Ain’t nobody here but us chickens (07.26.12)
Chickens let loose on Berkeley High campus reunited with owners (06.14.11)

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