Do chickens like to watch TV? (or listen to the radio?)

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by vermontgal, Mar 2, 2009.

  1. vermontgal

    vermontgal Songster

    So, one of my chickens was recently in my bathtub because she was slightly injured from pecking. This led me to various comparisons between living with a parrot and living with a chicken.

    Parrots who are lonely or bored like to watch TV, and I am just wondering if chickens like this, or like music or radio, or if this is just all too much for the little walnut-sized brain.

    Parrots especially like shows such as the Muppets or Sesame Street. So I fired up the ol' YouTube and took my laptop over to the chicken. She seemed pretty disturbed, especially by Gonzo and the singing chicken chorus. She was interested, but disturbed. I did not show her the Swedish Chef with the chicken and the meat cleaver - I thought that would really be too much. I also showed her the video of herself laying her first egg! (How many chickens have watched a video on YouTube of themselves laying an egg. Now that is weird.) I also showed her some videos of roosters crowing. She has never met a rooster. She didn't seem particularly interested in the rooster.

    I like to experiment with perceptions, toward understanding my animals better. This is helpful to tell what they are thinking, and this then helps with training and/or anticipating behaviors that you want to reinforce or discourage.

    Maybe I should instead show her a video of nice gardens, or munchable insects?

    The chickens did get pretty excited when I showed them a seed catalog recently. Interestingly, they pecked the green leafy plants in the photos more than the red tomato pictures.
    Last edited: Mar 2, 2009

  2. Mahonri

    Mahonri Urban Desert Chicken Enthusiast Premium Member

    May 14, 2008
    North Phoenix
    My Coop
    If you ever become a Golden Feather Member, I think you should be dubbed "Chicken Psychologist"... maybe even before then.

    After I finished my coop, a friend asked, so where are you putting the AC and cable TV.... crazy guy, he knows I won't put in AC until I have the coop properly insulated. I have been thinking about padded roosts...
  3. flakey chick

    flakey chick Songster

    May 3, 2007
    When we brooder our chicks they were particularly interested in CSI. I have noticed their background "music" usually has a lot of very high frequency components and I think that is what they are wired to notice.

    BTW others here have commented that their chickens like CSI too, so I know its not just my girls.
  4. GirlOnTheRun

    GirlOnTheRun Hatching

    Jan 27, 2009
    North Central Texas
    Thank you for asking! I've wondered this myself.

    My girls love our Lynard Skynard CD! I tried to switch to the newest Dixie Chicks CD but there seemed to be some unrest in the coop (too mellow and easy I think). They also like the country countdown on Sunday morning! (or maybe it's just me)

    Yesterday, I sang the song "Chicken Fry" to them when it was on the radio. Not sure if it was the song itself or my singing, but one of my pullets was definately bobbing her head!

    I've heard that music or TV might also be a predator deterrent as well.


  5. Attack Chicken

    Attack Chicken [IMG]emojione/assets/png/2665.png?v=2.2.7[/IMG] Hu

    Sep 25, 2008
    Indianapolis, IN
    My chickens sit on the couch or on my lap and watch Animal Planet LOL
  6. I go outside with my camara phone sometimes and show my two year old flock pictures of when they were chicks. The roos start cackling, frightened at this shiney machine that they rarely see, and the hens litereally TURN AWAY, as if to say, "You can't make me look at it, you can't!"

    [​IMG] My Polish will turn her head in the other direction and won't look at me until the phone is away! Silly chicken!
  7. Ondra's Seramas

    Ondra's Seramas Drowning in Seramas

    Feb 19, 2009
    North Central WA
    If you ever have one chick alone, a radio is great company. They have to get used to it a little though.

  8. Feathered Wings

    Feathered Wings Songster

    Oct 9, 2008
    Music is very soothing to chicks especially classical or soft rock it just seems to calm them down.
    Quail also respond well to music i had some young ones in my kitchen and the only thing that calmed them down was music.
    Bad thing was they got so attached to it i had to keep it on 24/7 or they would chirp till i turned it back on [​IMG]
  9. Umbral_Necropolitan

    Umbral_Necropolitan In the Brooder

    Feb 28, 2009
    Bakersfield, California
    I've never seen a chicken listen to or watch television but I have seen a animal with a similar brain size do it. I've raised turtles for over a decade and the ones who live outside are intrigued by TV, the computer, and even books(with pictures). I would guess they are curious about the noise and colors, as the more curious turtles will press there beaks to the glass to be close enough to investigate... My guess about chickens is that chickens will either be curious about the mysterious box making noises or be afraid of it, as it could be a predator.

  10. vermontgal

    vermontgal Songster

    CSI, hmm. That is pretty far from the Muppets.

    As I haven't owned a TV for nearly 20 years, my show choices for chicken-viewing seem to be a little dated. [​IMG]

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