Community works together after group of peafowl stray from Bronx Zoo

Crystal Cranmore Image
Tuesday, May 28, 2024
Peafowls get out of Bronx Zoo
Crystal Cranmore has more on the search and rescue of the Bronx Zoo peafowls.

MORRIS PARK, Bronx (WABC) -- Birds of a feather flocked together after they strayed from the grounds of the Bronx Zoo.

Officials say at least five peafowl -- a mix of peacocks and peahens -- made their way outside the zoo on Monday morning.

"I've never seen anything like this the entire time I've lived in the Bronx," said Harry Phillips, an eyewitness.

The birds certainly drew attention as they strutted through Morris Park and officials say it is rare that they make it out that far.

Neighbors first spotted the flock at the Morris Park train station on Paulding Avenue around 9:30 a.m.

Phillips pulled his car over to help guide the peafowl to the sidewalk and made one of the initial calls to authorities, before capturing the incident on his phone.

"I kind of did a double take and didn't know if I was really seeing a peacock," he said. "I went behind them and made sure that the cars weren't coming."

Phillips doesn't take all the credit for helping the peafowl get to safety.

He described it as a community effort, as a number of residents along Paulding Avenue helped round up the birds and get them to safety, trying not to ruffle any feathers along the way.

"It was the zoo, the city, the NYPD, our neighbors who let the NYPD into their yards and, you know, everybody trying to keep an eye on them and make sure they're safe," Phillips said.

The adventure eventually came to an end in Dany Martinez's backyard.

"I was surprised and I got scared because it was right in front of my door," Martinez said.

Officials retrieved five birds after a short while, one even putting up a pretty good fight.

"There's one that like really gave them a lot of trouble like going from rooftop to rooftop," Phillips said. "I just I made a phone call. I tried to keep eyes on it," Philips said.

Bronx Zoo officials say they have more than 100 free roaming peafowl at the zoo, and while they occasionally stray from the park, they usually come back on their own.

Officials there said they are closely monitoring additional reports of loose peafowl.

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