How do you measure a chicken’s happiness? Is it in the way it runs for food? How much time it spends preening?
To size up what might make chickens happy in their brief lives, researchers at the University of Guelph putting 16 breeds through physical fitness and behavioural tests. They’re watching how well birds scramble over a barrier for food, how skittish they seem and whether they play with a fake worm.
Chickens can’t say how they feel, but playing with a fake worm may be a sign of happiness.
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Guelph study investigates the mental state of poultry
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