How Smart are Chickens? Part I

How Smart are Chickens? Part I

Smarter than the average toddler, if a recent news article is anything to go by. Dr Christine Nicol from Bristol University has postulated that chickens are capable of grasping concepts that take small humans years to learn. These include the concept of objects which are out of sight continuing to exist, and weighing up the benefits of delayed gratification (yep, I’m tipping that one isn’t a big hit with your average toddler).  Andy Lamey from Monash University has also weighed into the whole chicken smarts issue, with his speciality being  primitive self-consciousness and avian cognition and how it relates to current theories in moral standing.

All this comes down to a chicken having a reasonably well developed sense of self. More than, say, the butcher bird living in our yard who is constantly attempting to assault the interloper he thinks he sees in the window of the Mistubishi ute, and probably not as much as your average Gen Y’er, so  I don’t think there will be a sudden rash of chicken selfies on Facebook. (“This is me, like, chillaxing at the Nesting Box last night after a hard day’s egg laying – ZZZ”)

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