Five CRAZY Things About Chickens

by Sally Matheny

Six Chicken Nuggets?
     Whenever my children and husband go to an animal feed and seed store or an animal sale somewhere, I get a little nervous.      
     Every so often, they will call home and say something to the effect of “We bought you a present,” or “we’ve got a surprise for you!”       
     See, I don’t know why they think by saying they have something for ME, how that's supposed to sweeten me up for the load they’re about to drop.
     Five horses, three goats, a very fat miniature pig, three dogs, two cats, four turkeys, a couple of goldfish, and a handful of chickens are enough, don’t you think?
     So, when Z-man and Dad go grab a bite at MickeyD’s after swim practice one night, I’m a bit surprised with the six “chicken nuggets” they bring home.
     Nevertheless, one look at my son’s face, and a peek at the peeps, is all it took. Absolutely adorable! What kind of mother would I be to say no to those seven sweet faces?
     Our family loves fresh eggs, and we were down to two laying hens, so it was time to replenish the chicken coop. We’ve raised baby chicks before but this is new stuff for Z-man. I thought I would Google some interesting facts about chicks for him to learn (always homeschooling!)

Adorable Baby Chicks
     Interesting facts is putting it mildly. Let me just preface this by saying I’m a big supporter of poultry science and agriculture programs. Our middle daughter attended poultry science institutes and considered majoring in poultry science.

     However, the “Top Ten Facts About Chickens,” posted by The Division of Agriculture at the University of Arkansas, left me puzzled. The following are five of their (crazy) facts followed by my comments in italics.

1.    “Chickens will be less ‘flighty’ if while tending a pen or chicken house the caretaker walks backwards.”

Okay, I will try this in order for the chickens to be less “flighty”. However, I may be less “walk-y” if I am trying to navigate backwards in a chicken pen. Hopefully, I will not slip on chicken poo, step in the food or water dishes, or upset the occasional black snake that makes its’ way in. When I walk backwards and land on top of a chicken, I agree, he will be less ‘flighty.”

2.    “It is thought that the nearest relative of the Tyrannosaurus Rex is a chicken.”

 Pleeezze…don’t get me started on this one. Seriously?

3.    “Christmas has different meanings in different countries. Christmas Eve in Japan is a good day to eat fried chicken and strawberry short-cake.”

There’s only one meaning of Christmas for me, which is celebrating the birth of Jesus Christ.
However, I think ANY day of the year is a good day to eat fried chicken and strawberry shortcake!

4.   “A chicken's gizzard will likely have gravel to help "chew" the food for digestion.”

Some people eat chicken gizzards, right? I searched and found three ways to prepare chicken gizzards. None of them mentioned removing the gravel before cooking. I guess you should go for the fried recipe to avoid noticing the extra crunch.

5.   “You can literally hypnotize a chicken by holding it and drawing a line in the dirt over and over. The chicken will stay still right there as long as you do this.”

I can’t help but wonder if the chicken is staying still because 1) you are holding it, or 2) he thinks you’ll eventually reach the worm you’re scratching for, and he would like first dibs on it.

Pardon me, University of Arkansas, I think Z-man and I will do a little more in depth research and come up with our own Top Interesting Facts about Chickens.

Join in on the conversation! What do you think is an interesting fact about chickens? Or maybe you just know a crazy one!