Fun Facts About Chickens And Hens

You probably eat eggs and poultry on a regular basis, but how much do you know about chickens and hens? Here are a few fun facts that will shed some light on our feathered friends.

1. Chickens are omnivores.

You might think that chickens only eat seeds, grass, and grain, but in fact, they also eat insects, field mice, toads, and lizards!

2. Chickens can recognize over 100 faces.

Though you might struggle to tell chickens apart, rest assured they can recognize the faces of people around them. They can also recognize different animals, like cats and dogs.

3. Chickens have better color vision than humans.

Contrary to popular belief, chickens aren’t colorblind. In fact, they have five types of light receptors in the eye that allow them to see many different colors.

4. Chickens have REM sleep.

Like humans, chickens see dreams during the REM (rapid eye movement) phase of sleeping. But they also go through a sleep phase called unihemispheric slow-wave sleep (USWS) in which half of the brain sleeps while the other half is awake. This literally means they can sleep with one eye open.

5. Chickens have advanced communication skills.

What sounds like meaningless clucks is actually a language of more than 30 different vocalizations that is used to communicate.

6. Genetics determines egg color.

Did you know you can determine a chicken’s egg shell color by its earlobe color? A hen’s breed is another indicator of what color egg she will produce.

7. Chickens are descended from dinosaurs.

Can you imagine chickens the size of dinosaurs? The truth is, chickens are descended from T. Rex dinosaurs.

8. Chickens outnumber humans four to one.

In case you’re wondering, there are more than 25 billion chickens in the world. So a chicken invasion might be more plausible than an alien invasion. Statistically speaking.

9. Chickens are smarter than they look.

Don’t underestimate a chicken’s intelligence! They have strong problem-solving skills and have super-sensory powers, like telescopic eyesight.

10. Chickens are followers.

Chicken keepers know that if they can get one chicken to obey their commands, then the rest will follow.

11. Chickens can fly and run.

Though they can’t fly very far, they can fly over a fence or get up high in a tree. They’re also able to turn on a dime to get away from predators.