[TN-Bird] Change in GA state bird?

  • From: "David Aborn" <David-Aborn@xxxxxxx>
  • To: "TN-Bird" <tn-bird@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Thu, 25 Feb 2010 12:58:26 -0500

This was in today's Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

David Aborn
Chattanooga, TN

An Augusta restaurateur has launched a grass roots effort to change
Georgia's official state bird from the brown thrasher to the chicken.

"I've got a lot of brown thrashers in my back yard; they're all over the
place," said Chris Cunningham, president of the company that operates eight
Wife Saver restaurants in Georgia and South Carolina.  "My wife and I, we
sit on the patio and have a cocktail and we were sitting there thinking,
'what a waste.' The brown thrasher is the state bird, and what's it ever
done for the state of Georgia?"

The brown thrasher, Cunningham says, "hasn't done anything. It's a pretty
bird, nothing against the brown thrasher, but the chicken brings millions of

Cunningham points to the chicken processing industry in northeast Georgia,
saying that "chicken that's processed in the state of Georgia is shipped all
over the world. If it wasn't for the chicken, Georgia's economy would be in
the tank."

Cunningham, whose family opened the first Wife Saver restaurant in Augusta
in 1965, is so adamant about the need for a change that he is spearheading a
new Web site crowing about the idea, flipthebirds.com.

On the Web site, which is chock full of fowl facts and trivia, Cunningham
asks visitors to sign an online petition and to write their state
representatives. He also talks about his effort to further the cause of the

"People need to get online, call us, get a yard sign, ask for a t-shirt, do
something," Cunningham said. "I just want to see how people think about it,
and maybe the legislators might listen to us. At last the chicken will get a
little respect out of the deal."

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