If a cunning rooster avoids capture again today, he will be shot.
But Alex Kerr is pleading for the Dunedin City Council to extend its deadline. Kerr said the daily crowing of the stray rooster he named Henry had incited noise complaints to the council.
"I hardly ever hear Henry but the complaints are coming in every couple of days now."
The plucky rooster walked on to his property in Glen Rd about five months ago, and stayed, happily co-existing with his cats.
"He's at ease with the breeze." When the first noise complaint was made before Christmas, Kerr found a farm in Brighton where Henry could happily live out his days. He asked the complainants and the council to give him more time to catch Henry.
"I've got a home for him to go to, we just need more time." Kerr, a roofer, took time off work yesterday to try to catch Henry.
An appeal for volunteers on social media to assist with the chase was taken up by two women.
The closest the chase came to success yesterday was when Henry ran into a large net held by the women hiding behind bushes.
Henry quickly burrowed under the net and ran into the shadows, hiding quietly until everyone left.
Kerr had fed Henry for months to try to get close to catch him but the bird always bolted when he got within a metre.
People had been giving him trapping advice, such as putting a hen in a small cage, in a bigger cage, and lure him inside, but he lacked the necessary equipment. The advice to catch the rooster napping was hopeless, as Henry slept in a mature cherry tree, high enough to hear anyone sneaking up.
"He's incredibly smart." Kerr was in a group of seven people who spent an hour trying to trap Henry in November last year.
Council regulatory service group compliance solutions manager Ros MacGill said pest control staff would attempt to catch the rooster today so Kerr could relocate it. "But if we can't catch it, we will need to shoot it." MacGill said.