On 8 November 2019, “TheChiggens” wrote his first DAILY CLUCKMAZING FACT. He wanted to post facts about chickens, so that we may learn more about the animals we all love and care for. At first, he posted each day in a new thread, which lead to some members missing a day or two. On Day 23, Chiggens, stated a new thread and just added new facts to it. Sadly, as it does with all of us, real life (his job in this case) causes us to stop doing something that we enjoy. This happened to Chiggens. At first, he asked if someone would be willing to take over the thread and gather new facts. (A rather large task as I found out.) At this time the few active members of the thread conferred about turning the thread into an article, where all the facts would be listed together. As I have the time, now (I’m on vacation!) I offered to write the article. Well, it’s not really and article, but a consolidated list of the facts, as Chiggens posted. All I have none is gather the facts from all the threads, added some links to outside sources, and well, hopefully you will enjoy learning as much as those of us who followed the threads. All the credit goes to TheChiggens!

Day 1 Did you know chickens were domesticated in Southern China 8,000 years ago in 6000 B.C.!!!

Day 2 Did you know chickens can dream and see in full color!!!

Day 3 Research suggests that chickens are cleverer than toddlers. Hens have exhibited mathematical reasoning, self-control and even structural engineering!!!

Day 4 The record for most egg yolks in 1 egg is 9 yokes!!!

Day 5 Chickens can taste saltiness! but not sweetness ☹

Day 6 The earliest printing of "Why did the chicken cross the road?" Was in 1847 in an NYC magazine!!!

Day 7 Did you know a hen has to eat about 4 pounds of feed to lay one dozen of eggs??!!

Day 8 Today it's sad- About 97 chickens are killed every 0.5 seconds worldwide!!

Day 9 The largest chicken egg recorded weighed 12 ounces and contained 2 yokes!!!

Day 10 Did you know an egg develops at 88 degrees F And is laid at 105 degrees??!!

Day 11 Did you know chickens can run up to 9 miles per hour??!! Zooooom!

Day 12 Did you know a chicken’s bodies contain 15% more water than humans??

Day 13 A chicken has more bones in its neck than a giraffe!

Day 14 The strange fear of chickens is called Alektorphobia!!

Day 15 The waste produced by one chicken in its lifetime can supply enough electricity to run a 100-watt bulb for five hours.

Day 16 If all the chickens on earth were evenly distributed among all the people on earth, each person would have at least 3 chickens!!!

Day 17 Chickens can swim, and some enjoy it, but to avoid drowning they need to be able to get out of the water when they’re ready!!!

Day 18 A chicken not only learns to recognize its own name but also knows the names of other chickens in its flock!!!

Day 19 How many feathers does a chicken have? To settle an argument, an Ohio man once took time to count every one of a Plymouth Rock’s 8,325 feathers.

Day 20 Each female chicken starts life carrying the beginnings of thousands of undeveloped yolks, but a hen rarely lays more than a small percentage of the eggs she started with!!!

Day 21 A lightweight chicken releases about 120 pounds of droppings per year, heavy breed averages 180 pounds; and chickens poop even when they’re asleep!!!

After the Thanksgiving holiday Chiggens posted a poll….

Day 22 A chicken’s digestive, excretory and reproductive tracts come together at the cloaca; when an egg is laid, the intestinal opening is pressed shut so a hen can’t lay and poop at the same time. Kinda gross yet fascinating!

Another poll was posted…

So, the first 22 daily post were combined into a thread, in which everyone could follow.

Day 23 Protoporphyrin IX, which is one of the organic compounds that makes the brown coloration on eggshells, glows red under UV light!!!

Day 24 The chicken was the first bird to have its genome sequenced, in 2004. (https://www.nature.com/articles/432679a)

Day 25 Chickens can live without a head for a long time; check out Mike The Headless Chicken, who lived for 18 months without a head!!! (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mike_the_Headless_Chicken)

Day 26 The only continent that has no live chickens is Antarctica; the only country with no chickens is Vatican City — although the Vatican keeps a chicken flock 26 miles away in the city of Castel Gandolfo!!! Everyone loves chickens!

Day 27 Although rare, a chicken can be both male and female, with half of its body looking like a rooster and the other half looking like a hen — a phenomenon called bilateral gynandromorphism!

Day 28 Chickens were carried along in Roman armies, it was believed if they ate chicken before battle they would be successful! (https://www.smithsonianmag.com/history/how-the-chicken-conquered-the-world-87583657/)

Now this fact was later corrected to read, “Chickens accompanied Roman armies, and their behavior was carefully observed before battle; a good appetite meant victory was likely. According to the writings of Cicero, when one contingent of birds refused to eat before a sea battle in 249 B.C., an angry consul threw them overboard. History records that he lost that battle.”

Day 29 Chicks molt three times before they mature, then annually thereafter, although renewing an entire set of plumage may take as long as three years!!!

Day 30 A chicken’s vocabulary includes at least 30 words, and more than likely several others that have yet to be identified! So who knows what they’re saying behind your backs!


Tomorrow (day 31) there will be a little quiz seeing your knowledge of chickens and celebrating 31 days! So be here if you can!


Today I'm testing YOUR knowledge with a little quiz about chicken egg colors!

And also, in celebration of day 31!

Rules: Look at the list of breeds and then send what you think to my inbox (so the winner is a surprise) with what you think.

Example: 1. brown 2. white

Also, NO looking at books, internet, magazines, etc. This must be what you can think RIGHT now.

The person who gets the most right (there can be more than 1) Gets bragging rights! And the next fact will be about eggs and will be dedicated to the winner/winners! (will be mentioned for winning)

So now let the QUIZ begin! (20 breeds)

The correct answer(s) are in red.

White Leghorn-white Silkie-cream/tinted Golden Laced Wyandotte-brown

Blue Hen of Deleware-brown Buff Brahma-brown Black Jersey Giant-lt cream/dk brown

Black Astralorp-brown Dominque-brown ISA Brown-brown

Speckled Sussex-brown Cream Legbar-blue/green/olive Lavender Orpington-brown

Minorca-white New Hampshire Red-brown Barnvelder-brown

Andalusian-white Ayam Cemani-white Buff Cochin-brown

Salmon Faverolle-brown/pinkish Easter Egger-blue/green/dk green/pink

Day 32 This fact is dedicated to @Rose_Quartz for getting 20/20 on the quiz! And to @SoftSilkie for getting second place on the quiz! Nice job guys! And now the fact! The protein in an egg is equal to the protein in one ounce of meat, chicken or fish, according to the USDA!

Day 33 A female chicken will mate with many different males but if she decides, after the deed is done, that she doesn’t want a particular rooster’s offspring and can eject his sperm. This occurs most often when the male is lower in the pecking order!!! Sounds handy! (https://io9.gizmodo.com/female-chickens-have-the-weirdest-birth-control-method-5834529)

Day 34 Chickens are able to understand "object permeability" Even when an object is taken away from them and hidden, chickens are able to understand that the object still exists. Not many animals have this intelligence, and even young human children do not have this mind!

Day 35 CHICKENS ARE SUN WORSHIPERS A sunbathing chicken spreads its wings and often lies on its side with one leg in the air. Her plumage captures as much sunlight as possible. It is not known exactly why chickens like to sunbathe. The heat probably scares away insects and parasites. But chickens, just like us, also seem to find it wonderfully relaxing!

Day 36 Chicken’s color vision is better than a human’s, encompassing not only the red, blue and green wavelengths we can see but also ultraviolet wavelengths we can’t see!!! (https://www.livescience.com/8099-chickens-color-humans.html)

Day 37 Chickens attach great importance to making a nest. They start their nest by scratching a shallow hole in the ground. Then they carry twigs and leaves on their backs to the upcoming nest, where they let the nesting material slide off and create a raised edge around the dimple. They do not eat or drink while making the nest until the nest has sufficient privacy and is safe from predators!

Day 38 The chicken is a forest animal. The chicken is descended from the red fowl from Southeast Asia. Her behavior is often the same as that of her wild ancestors. In a natural environment, modern-day chicken spends most of its time searching for food. She runs great distances and can fly short distances. She likes to climb trees and stay there at night to protect herself from predators.

Day 39 Another one is that chicken eggs have a special gland that protects the egg from bacteria. It is called the "egg bloom" and is completely natural. Washing eggs runs the egg bloom off, causing bacteria to be able to enter the egg, making it possible for the egg to rot. If you do wash your eggs you should keep them in the fridge to prevent rotting. It takes two weeks for an washed egg to rot (I have tested this), but if kept in the fridge they will stay good for a couple of months. I believe an unwashed egg can last several months out of the fridge, and even longer in it!!

Day 40 Chickens, like other birds, "have a countercurrent heat exchange system in their legs and feet—the blood vessels going to and from the feet are very close together, so blood flowing back to the body is warmed by blood flowing to the feet. The newly cooled blood in the feet lowers heat loss from the feet, and the warmed blood flowing back into the body prevents the bird from becoming chilled. And because bird circulation is so fast, blood doesn’t remain in the feet long enough to freeze.They may also alternate standing on one foot at a time, pulling one up into their warm downy feathers, while the other stands in the cold, and then reversing them. And when they perch, they can lower their bodies down to cover their feet, keeping their feet warm with their feathers.Do cold feet bother birds? It’s hard to say for sure, but we do know that birds have few pain receptors in their feet."

Day 41 A chicken uses its beak not only to eat and drink but also to process objects, to track things down, to build a nest and to defend itself. The end of the beak is particularly sensitive due to the many nerve endings that are contained therein. That is why cutting off part of the beak, as is still the case with laying hens in many European countries, is very painful!

Day 42 Chickens love dust baths! Like many other birds, chickens love taking a dust bath in a self-dug pit. Due to the fluttering and rolling balls in the dust, the insulation of the springs is maintained and parasites are prevented. It has been found that chickens that have been in a small cage all their lives take a dust bath as soon as they get the chance!

Day 43 Per pound, Australians eat on average per year more chicken than Americans – 205 lbs. to 201 lbs., making it the country that consumes the most chicken per capita.

Day 44 Chicken feathers are waterproof. They waterproof them by using a gland located where their tail feathers meet the saddle feathers. It looks like a small bump on their skin. They will reach back and bite the bump several times, then clamp their beak down on the base of one of their own feathers and slide to the end of the feather, and then they repeat the process. Also, silkie feathers are not waterproof, and I don't know about frizzles and frazzles.

Day 45 In South Korea alone, there are more chicken restaurants than there are McDonald’s in the entire world!

Day 46 Chickens have pain receptors, enabling them to feel pain and distress. Just imagine their agony, then, when they endure mutilations such as having the ends of their sensitive beaks cut off with an infra-red laser – with no painkillers!!!

Day 47 YOU CAN’T JUST HAVE ONE. Not only will you want more than one, but chickens are also social creatures and they need companions. You should never have just one bird. They need a flock to feel secure!

Day 48 Chickens can taste almost the same tastes as humans, as can most other animals. They have the ability to taste salty, sour and bitter, but don't seem particularly attracted to salty, sour or bitter foods. But they lack the "sweet" taste receptors, so what tastes sweet to us, won't taste sweet to a chicken!!!

Day 49 Now on Day 49, there was a bit of confusion. The “fact” seemed to contradict a previous fact.

Day 50 Chickens are dinosaurs. Like all birds, chickens are descendants of dinosaurs and closely related to the T. rex. You can say that chickens are in fact living dinosaurs!!!

Day 51 A mother hen turns her eggs under her about 50 times a day!!!

Day 52 There are more chickens in the world than any other domesticated fowl.

Day 53 The oldest chicken, Muffy, is 22.

Day 54 In 2009, the U.S. Department of Agriculture estimated that over 90 billion eggs are produced in the United States alone.

Day 55 As hens grow older, they lay larger eggs, but fewer than when they're younger.

Day 56 Many people think chickens are vegetarians, but besides eating seeds, grass, and grain, they will catch and eat insects, lizards, toad, and even field mice!

Day 57 So what happens when a chicken’s hearing starts to deteriorate? Simple, they grow new hearing cells. They are able to regenerate cells as they are needed so that the affected bird has near 100% hearing!

Day 58 Studies done at Bristol University and also in Australia, believe they may have uncovered empathy in these creatures. (http://www.bris.ac.uk/news/2011/7525.html)

Day 59 Have you heard the term ‘pecking order’? This is a very real thing and this is how your hens will organize themselves in their social hierarchy. Just as with most animals, it's most common when introducing new chickens into the flock. Typically, your ‘mother hen’ is also your protector so this is also a good thing. Unless things get bad, just let your flock figure things out.

Day 60 They have unique personalities. Each breed has its own demeanor, quirks, and characteristics. This is just like any other animal, dogs or horses. You will find that chicken breeds all differ greatly from each other and you will eventually find your favorite breed (and probably end up finding that you can’t just pick one). All chickens have different personalities and you'll learn over time that your whole flock will have its own personality too.

Day 61 Today let's see what you guys have to say! How about a fact? These were the replies that were submitted: ”I don't know if you have said this or not, but chickens mourn when they lose a flock mate. I had one die suddenly, no signs of illness & no predator attack, and two of her friends were sitting next to her until I came out to pick her up. It was very sad. Those two seemed to mope around for a couple days.” submitted by ValerieJ, and “Chickens have great memories and facial recognition skills. A chicken can recognize and distinguish more than 100 faces, animals and humans.” from onegreenplanet.org Submitted by SueT.

Day 62 There is plenty of evidence that chickens do respond to music. Studies on day-old chicks have found that they prefer music to random noise. They found that the chickens were much more likely to lay in the 'musical boxes', and that they had a slight preference for the classical music.

Day 62.1 Chickens have been farmed by humans for over 8,000 years!

Day 63 In 2009, a lady found a fried chicken head at McDonalds.

Day 64 On the Island of Kauai in Hawaii live thousands of feral chickens — once-domesticated birds that have reverted to a wild state — that provide a unique look into how domestic animals and their genes respond to the natural environment. Recent research shows that these birds are hybrids of the red junglefowl-like chickens that Polynesians brought to Hawaii and the more modern domesticated chickens introduced to Hawaii by European and U.S. settlers. It's thought that hurricanes that hit the island in 1982 and 1992 released chickens from people's backyards and into the forests, where they met and bred with the remnants of the Polynesian jungle fowl's (Kauai lacks imported predators like mongooses, which wiped out the ancient birds from the other Hawaiian Islands).

Day 65 Chickens can navigate by using the magnetic fields of the Earth, they can also tell the time by the sun. We already know that roosters have an internal circadian rhythm, but they will use the daylight intensity to judge whether or not it’s time to go to roost. (https://phys.org/news/2010-03-birds.html) (https://www.thehappychickencoop.com/rooster-crowing/)

Day 66 No fact stated as Chiggens was ill.

Day 67 The largest chicken egg ever laid was a whopping 12oz and it contained two yolks – ouch!

Day 68 A rooster was chosen to be the mascot of the 1998 FIFA World Cup.

Day 69 Mother hens teach their chicks not to eat grains that could be bad from them, where to find food, and how to forage. Chickens also copy each other’s behaviors, as chicken keepers well know, if you can get one chicken to do something you want, they will all follow suit.

Day 70 - Day 72 due to illness, there was no facts posted.

Day 73
Many hens make a big ol’ racket every day when they announce to the world that they are indeed going inside to lay an egg. Some people call this “the egg song” and the whole flock joins in the chorus, even if they aren’t laying an egg at that moment. It’s really quite beautiful!

Day 74 A hen’s estrogen output may be reduced by aging, infection or a tumor, causing her to produce testosterone and develop a larger comb and male plumage, mount other hens and even crow.

Day 75 Like some other birds, chickens (though not all breeds) possess the ability to detect and orient to magnetic fields. Submitted by BDutch.

Day 76 Chicks Communicate with Each Other from Inside Eggs. From an egg to another, birds' chicks seem to communicate with each other, even before hatch, through "vibration", a previously unknown method. Submitted by SueT.

CLUCKMAZING FACT 77 Submitted by SoftSilkie:
When a chicken is introduced to an existing flock she (I'm just going to say "she" for these examples) will take turns fighting the other chickens to gain a place in the pecking order. Chickens understand a fight when they see one, and all will gather and watch but none will interfere. The new chicken starts with the highest chicken in the order. If the new chicken wins she will automatically be placed one rank above the loser. If she loses then she will continue down the line until she either wins a fight or reaches the bottom. Each time a fight ends with the new chicken losing then the next highest chicken in the pecking order will step forward and take their turn, all in perfect order. You should never stop the fights unless they look like they will fight to the death. If this happens than it's up to you to decide what to do. At any time a chicken can challenge another chicken of a higher rank, if the lower-ranking chicken wins then she will be one rank above the loser and if she loses then nothing changes. Sometimes when a chicken feels like they have been pecked once to often then she will stand up for herself and fight, but most the time they back off after only a few seconds.

CLUCKMAZING FACT 78 Submitted by SoftSilkie:
A single chick on average drops waste about every five minutes. Can't remember where I heard that, but I think I read it somewhere. Seems true enough to me! :sick

Where will this article take us? For me, hopefully it will bring new readers to the thread, who will add their own facts. As you can see, Fact 77 and 78 were submitted by SoftSilkie. But, I honestly can not say. For those who are interested in reading the whole thread here is the link https://www.backyardchickens.com/threads/cluckmazing-facts-a-new-facts-daily.1341244/

Also, the Cluckmazing Chat Thread was started https://www.backyardchickens.com/threads/the-cluckmazing-chat-thread.1343054/#post-22043230 so stop by and enjoy the conversations!