Chickens float. Huh.


5 Years
May 26, 2014
Southern Utah
Heard some squawking from the cattle pen next door and saw a chicken flapping in the water trough. After a moment, the squawking stopped and I figured she had just flapped herself out, but the cows were all standing around like something was still wrong, so after I heard the second series of squawking sounds, I ran over there.

I didn't know chickens could float so well, but thank goodness they can.

I wasn't getting into the pen with five large beasts (including a bull who was the most curious), so I found a piece of old fence and slid it in between the panels to see if she would be able to climb up with it.

I had to lever her up out of the water; I suspect she was tired and maybe in shock.

As she sat there, not getting off the wood, I wondered how I could maneuver the stick to where she wasn't near the water and the nails in the wood wouldn't be near enough for the cows to hurt themselves on; the bull solved my problem by taking a step forward and gently nudging the wet chicken with his nose. She landed in an empty, much smaller trough and just stood there. I knew she would be safe in that so I put the wood back and returned to building the rabbit hutch at my place. When the neighbor kid came home a few minutes later, he saw the chicken and picked her up and put her someplace warmer. (He could get into the cow pen without fear, whereas the bull and I would have had a territory dispute.)

Chickens float. Good to know.


Flock Mistress
12 Years
Jan 9, 2009
south Florida, Pompano Beach
I believe it's a short term float though, they do sink after a bit so she is lucky you came along to help!
This is so true. I had a bantam white rock that was interested in the pool. If there was something floating in it, she'd hop aboard. One morning I found her drowned, I was so sad.
Her name was Rose, she was so sweet too. I've still got her sister, Bella, and she is a doll as well. Good thing you got to her in time.

drumstick diva

Still crazy after all these years.
Premium Feather Member
11 Years
Aug 26, 2009
Out to pasture
Can't recall her name but some woman on BYC has a group of swimming(floating) buff orpingtons and has photos of them in the pool with her daughters and their friends. I think videos too. Try putting "Swimming chickens," in the search box.


Faith & Feathers
9 Years
May 1, 2011
Olathe, Kansas
That's so funny! I'm glad you were able to get her out.
Chickens can float for a short period of time but eventually their feathers will become waterlogged and they sink.

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