Originally Posted by 2mnypets
Ok, this may sound completely crazy and insane, but can chickens learn a behavior like dogs do? I'm curious because you say that you keep giving your other girl cherry tomatoes when the other one is laying an egg. Could it be possible Chicka that your hen has learned a behavior, and you are inadvertenly encouraging it by giving her cherry tomatoes? I know my dogs do that, but I wasn't sure if chickens had that brain capability or not. I know mine seem to know how to manipulate me. Either way I feel for ya ,but it was really cute watching your video and watching the bunny hop away in your yard.
I don't think that's crazy at all. In fact, I've thought about that a lot. Obviously there is some Pavlovian reaction going on, because they now come running from anywhere in the yard when I walk out towards their run.
Having said that, their laying times seem to cycle later in the day over the course of the week, then start over early, so many days the clucking starts (presumably) after I've left for work, and therefore there isn't any "reward" for shutting up. I can only imagine how long it goes on, but hopefully the 9 eggs I gave to the neighbor across the fence yesterday will help smooth things out a little.
The rest of the time, they are very quiet, or at least not loud, so it really is geared towards the egg-laying (when I'm not generally around) or a nearby cat (hit and miss), so I'm hoping I'm not creating enough of a pattern for them to remember.
On a sidenote, I've noticed that they are much quieter when they have the entire yard to roam in, versus just the rabbit area or - gasp! - their run. However, for the second day in a row, we only received one egg versus two, so now I'm wondering if there is an egg or two somewhere that will surprise us later? We'll see...