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Old 08-10-2013, 02:45 PM   #601
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Because they will follow me anywhere (did the Pied Piper really get followed by rats--I think that something was lost in translation and it was HENS that followed him), I have to take the garbage out to the road while they are still locked up. I don't want them near the road (unless they are in the car).
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Old 08-10-2013, 06:03 PM   #602
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Those girls are so crafty. I bet if they went to Hollywood, they would be stars in no time.
ROFL!
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Old 08-10-2013, 09:34 PM   #603
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Those girls are so crafty. I bet if they went to Hollywood, they would be stars in no time.
Methinks they already are "stars."
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Old 08-21-2013, 02:23 PM   #604
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I must say that I spent two hours reading about chickens. Some of which was disturbing, especially the rescues done in battery farms. This reading all started with the link I posted earlier about the intelligence of chickens. Okay, some argue the study was biased, but I was under the misconception that chickens were, well, just chickens. That is, of course, until Myrtle and Harriet undertook to teach me otherwise.

I don't know that they could master simple arithmetic but I was surprised to learn that chickens do have a broad color spectrum. I've asked the DH to bring some physics diagrams next time he drops by to see the girls. I didn't know humans and chickens share 60% of the same DNA. And, that it is through genetic engineering that chickens lay so many eggs. I thought that was part of what made a chicken, well, a chicken. And yes, Eggna, Harriet, and Myrtle seem to know their names.

To read more about what the study found:

Chickens 'cleverer than toddlers' - Telegraph

I wish I could get my hands on a copy of The Intelligent Hen...
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Old 08-21-2013, 07:28 PM   #605
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I must say that I spent two hours reading about chickens. Some of which was disturbing, especially the rescues done in battery farms. This reading all started with the link I posted earlier about the intelligence of chickens. Okay, some argue the study was biased, but I was under the misconception that chickens were, well, just chickens. That is, of course, until Myrtle and Harriet undertook to teach me otherwise.

I don't know that they could master simple arithmetic but I was surprised to learn that chickens do have a broad color spectrum. I've asked the DH to bring some physics diagrams next time he drops by to see the girls. I didn't know humans and chickens share 60% of the same DNA. And, that it is through genetic engineering that chickens lay so many eggs. I thought that was part of what made a chicken, well, a chicken. And yes, Eggna, Harriet, and Myrtle seem to know their names.

To read more about what the study found:

Chickens 'cleverer than toddlers' - Telegraph

I wish I could get my hands on a copy of The Intelligent Hen...
I was reading another article that pointed out the idea that chickens hatched in a traditional small farm setting are more intelligent than those hatched in an incubator. It seems that from the moment they are hatched on a small farm the mother and other members of the flock communicate with the chicks and provide an education of sorts, the chicks hatched in an incubator do not experience that nurturing.

So I guess maybe you should home school your chicks!
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Old 08-21-2013, 08:19 PM   #606
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I am quite ready to believe that lots of birds and animals are much more intelligent than we give them credit for. Just a few nights ago I saw (via Netflix streaming) a program that first appeared on TV's Nature channel. A fellow who's a true naturalist had raised a clutch of wild turkey poults from the shell so that they imprinted on him. He spent over a year with them, mostly learning from them their innate wisdom about their environment -- how they already knew the difference between poisonous and nonpoisonous snakes and which animals were their enemies. There was a touching scene of one half-grown turkey playing with a fawn out in the woods. The show was called, "My Life as a Turkey," with Joe Hutto. I've heard that the turkeys grown commercially are not very bright.
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Old 08-21-2013, 08:26 PM   #607
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I am quite ready to believe that lots of birds and animals are much more intelligent than we give them credit for. Just a few nights ago I saw (via Netflix streaming) a program that first appeared on TV's Nature channel. A fellow who's a true naturalist had raised a clutch of wild turkey poults from the shell so that they imprinted on him. He spent over a year with them, mostly learning from them their innate wisdom about their environment -- how they already knew the difference between poisonous and nonpoisonous snakes and which animals were their enemies. There was a touching scene of one half-grown turkey playing with a fawn out in the woods. The show was called, "My Life as a Turkey," with Joe Hutto. I've heard that the turkeys grown commercially are not very bright.
We had two tom turkeys in Texas. Dumb things wouldn't look for shelter when it rained. They would stick their heads up with their mouths open. I got sick of chasing them inside every time it rained. First one, then the other drowned during a rain storm.

There was a special on PBS last year about how smart crows are. They would watch to see when folks were putting out their garbage. Then gather and wait.
Dive! Dive!
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Old 08-21-2013, 10:28 PM   #608
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I was reading another article that pointed out the idea that chickens hatched in a traditional small farm setting are more intelligent than those hatched in an incubator. It seems that from the moment they are hatched on a small farm the mother and other members of the flock communicate with the chicks and provide an education of sorts, the chicks hatched in an incubator do not experience that nurturing.

So I guess maybe you should home school your chicks!
There definitely is imprinting that goes on. I have been watching momma with the three young hens (they are now 9 weeks old). She has taught them how to scratch, to seek cover, to return to the coop at night, protected them from the other girls, how to take a dirt bath...all kinds of things. I know that she leads them to a spot in the yard where they can find bugs and other yummy things to eat. When they were only a few days old, she would take some of the chick feed and drop it on their beaks. From there, she taught them how to scratch. My hens definitely have a much healthier environment than birds kept in small cages. They also have a much healthier diet and relationship with humans. And, many of them have complete beaks (not all, Myrtle has a very short beak--the person I got her from trimmed it).

Incubators cannot do what momma does--she turns the eggs 30 times/24 hours for the first ... 14 days (or maybe it was 19?). She also "clucks" to them when sitting on the eggs and almost non-stop the last 2 days before they hatch. The humidity level and temperature are ideal for the eggs. I read something about the number of eggs that hatch when a broody hen sits on the eggs vs. an incubator. The hatch rate is higher when Mother Nature is in charge.

Humans have engineered hens to lay eggs at the rate they do. What hens are even better at is mothering chicks. Not all hens go broody--some argue that has been bred out of them. I think happy hens are more likely to go broody. We have several broody hens in the three flocks, but my Miss Broodie is the best--she goes broody in May, an ideal time, IMO.
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Old 08-23-2013, 06:12 AM   #609
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Methinks they already are "stars."
I bet they are too
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Old 08-23-2013, 11:50 AM   #610
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I bet they are too
Kylie, go back to page one of the Chicken Chronicles and read it through to the present. I guarantee you will find some great reading. All the original chickens have names including the first brood of hatchlings. There was one baby chick that didn't develop properly in the egg and came out with a gimpy leg. You need to read how CWS fixed the baby chick so it could walk. And there are pictures also. This thread is probably my favorite one. There is the saga of Cocky Rocky, the rooster.
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