Freedom may just be another word for nothing left to lose, but it was also a way of life for one Queens peacock—or, at least, it was until today. DNAinfo reports that the wayward bird has been captured after nearly a month on the lam—a bitter reminder to New Yorkers that freedom is fleeting.
The bird, which escaped in early August from John Bowne High School in Kew Gardens Hills, roamed for weeks around Northern Queens, bringing delight and hope to the borough’s residents, especially after he evaded capture by NYPD officers, school employees and animal control officers time and time again.
The bandit bird, who regularly appeared in public to strut his stuff, became a kind of folk hero. Naturally, he got his own twitter account.
For its part, Bowne’s agricultural department was rather laissez faire about the whole thing. At first, the school wasn’t sure it was even missing a peacock. Finally, they agreed to go check after various other borough institutions denied having lost one. Apparently, the bird’s feathers—normally clipped to prevent escapes—had grown out.
The bird had his adventures, slipping through the fingers of the authorities again and again. But eventually, the animal care employees and a “third party partner” (a peahen? was it a peahen?) were finally able to trap the peacock.
The elusive peacock has been returned to the school, to be kept in captivity, a poignant symbol of lost freedom for the students. Authorities reported that the bird was returned “unharmed.” Except for its broken spirit.