Domesticated chickens have inherited centuries’ worth of instinctual behaviors from their wild ancestors—unfortunately, those raised in factory farms aren’t allowed to follow these instincts. Caged egg-laying hens are prevented from being able to take dust baths, lay their eggs in nests or even spread their wings. And some places in the country still engage in cockfighting, where roosters are fitted with cruel spurs and forced to fight to the death.
With more than 24 known vocalizations, chickens have calls specific to land-based and aerial predators. Before they hatch, chicks can even communicate to their mom that they’re cold. But on factory farms, they use very different vocalizations, including long high-pitched calls—especially when they can’t engage in nesting behavior.
The “pecking order” is real. Dominant hens and roosters use posturing, pecks and vocalizations to assert their position—and make sure everyone else falls in line.
One day a week can make a world of difference for your health, animals and the environment! Start by trying a new vegetable-packed dish or swap your usual entrée with a plant-based meat alternative.