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News Brief

Aug. 8, 2013MO |  By: Campbell

Prairie Chicken Traveler

We know the story of Forrest Gump making his way across country on foot, but a prairie chicken hen went on her own incredible journey of more than 1,100 miles.

A GPS tracking collar around the chicken's neck sent information back to biologists who released the chicken as part of the prairie chicken restoration program. The chicken labeled "Bird Number 1-12" traveled from Nebraska, to Iowa, to Missouri and back again, racking up 1,165 miles on foot. With dangers lurking over every hill, Missouri Department of Conservation Media Specialist, Bill Graham, says this is a remarkable journey.

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He says right now the sample size of prairie chickens is so small, biologists are having difficulty determining if this is unusual behavior.

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Though it was an incredible trek, Graham says he hopes the other chickens do not embark on similar journeys, as it slows the reproductive process.