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Lab tests conclude Costco’s rotisserie chicken is actually dodo bird

By Baxter Mercury

A discerning Costco customer has shed light on one of the company’s darker secrets — their beloved $4.99 rotisserie chicken isn’t actually chicken, it’s a dodo bird. 

Howard Mandan, a 33-year-old Connecticut man who lives near the Derrywood Costco location, decided to send out a thigh for lab testing after purchasing the roasted bird on Nov. 4. 

“I’ve probably bought Costco rotisserie chickens over a hundred times, but that night I had, um, started taking a new supplement, and I looked at that bird and it was so big. It was huge. Breasts on top of breasts,” Mandan said. “It looked like a bodybuilder died in the tanning bed and got all crispy. And then I thought, $4.99? Seriously? There are no deals like that anymore. And it hit me — that’s not a chicken.”

Since receiving the initial test results, Mandan, who works as a software engineer, purchased 50 additional rotisserie chickens at 12 different Costco locations in the New England region — all but three tested negative for chicken and positive for 100% dodo.

“That’s when I knew I had to take this public,” he said. “I grew up thinking dodo birds were extinct, so this was over my head at that point.”

Mandan reported his findings to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, who he says initially dismissed his claims but, after convincing them to test one Costco bird, immediately launched a full-scale investigation. 

“We have concluded our investigation and determined that 99% of Costco’s famous rotisserie chickens are not, in fact, chicken,” a USDA spokesperson said on Dec. 4. “They’re all dodo birds. We don’t know how or why. But we have ordered an immediate recall of all Costco rotisserie chickens everywhere.”

Costco execs have been tight-lipped about how they have been able to revive the dodo population, a bird native only to the island of Mauritius and long believed to be extinct, but issued a statement Tuesday asserting that their rotisserie dodo is “100% free of growth hormones and antibiotics, unlike most grocery store rotisserie chickens.”

We spoke with extinct species expert and Southwestern University professor Rodger T. Morris about the implications of the dodo discovery. 

“Raphus cucullatus (dodo bird) was thought to have been extinct since the 17th century due to human activity, not the least of which was hunting,” he said. “The dodo was big, fat, flightless and juicy, which made it a prime target. It’s not out of the realm of the imagination that a corporation such as Costco could have utilized the cloning and genome editing technologies we have available to us to revive the dodo. Its revival only for the sake of human consumption is indeed tragic. That being said, they are delicious and can feed a family of four at just $4.99.”

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