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The story that goes with is a bit of a downer – it’s about the beginning of factory farming – but I wanted to leave you with a happy image for the weekend.

Something I learned from my chicken behavior course: you know today’s meat chickens are mature in six to eight weeks and ready for market, yes? That’s because they’ve bred them (the old fashioned way, generation-to-generation) to be eating machines.

So. Fine. Six weeks of gluttony and out. There are worse lives, even in modern agriculture.

chick But when you want to make more of these little porkers? You have to raise male and female eating machine chickens to adulthood, without letting them get too obese to function and breed.

That means the parents of these little chubboes are kept strictly to regular chicken rations, making them crazy hungry all the time.

Adult meat birds have the worst escape record of any commercial chicken. Or the best, depending on how you look at it.

Woops! I wanted to leave you with a happy picture. Here’s an adorable fluffy chick I stole off the internet. Have a good weekend!



Comment from Uncle Al
Time: May 12, 2017, 11:09 pm

There must be some reason that isn’t obvious why the chicken farmers don’t simply feed the breeders a low-nutrition but high bulk diet to keep them sane, or whatever passes for sane in chickens.

Thanks for that photo of the cute chick. I like cute chicks!

Comment from Some Vegetable
Time: May 12, 2017, 11:27 pm

Cheer up – soon you’ll be able to have your fried chicken without even bothering a chicken….


Comment from Bob B
Time: May 13, 2017, 12:21 am

“I wanted to leave you with a happy picture.”
And I wanted to share a happy video clip. Instead, all I have is the “Chicken Scene” from the movie Baraka. It’s an obvious comparison of modern human existence with mechanized chicken farming. About 3.5 minutes. The electric beak trimming is at 3:00.

Comment from ExpressoBold
Time: May 13, 2017, 12:28 am

Dinosaurs. Semi-domesticated dinosaurs… or so the scientists would have us believe!

Comment from Bob B
Time: May 13, 2017, 12:40 am

ExpressoBold: This is for you.

Comment from Monty James
Time: May 13, 2017, 4:56 am

Pretty much on topic:

MST3K Chicken Of Tomorrow

Comment from AliceH
Time: May 13, 2017, 11:02 pm


Now that it’s legal again in my town, I’ve started researching having a few backyard chickens. (Free range is not permitted, nor roosters.) There’s a lot to learn and, as with everything on the internet, the advice, opinions, and and “facts” are all muddled together, and not consistent from one site to the next. I think at the moment I’m most concerned about 1. how hard and how often to clean the coop and 2. How often to move the run aka how quickly can 3 chicks turn a patch of lawn to a dust desert. I’m kind of lazy so the sites telling me I have to do stuff every single morning and afternoon and evening is strong discouragement. The sites telling me I have to move the run every week are discouraging, also. It seems like having chickens can’t mean giving up taking a vacation ever, but that’s what I’m finding.

This may end up on my (extensive) list of things-I-enjoyed-imagining-but-never-will-do. Like start a bakery. Or hike the Appalachian Trail.

Comment from Feynmangroupie
Time: May 13, 2017, 11:47 pm

That explains this

I knew chickens were omnivores but damn. I wonder when they’ll start breeding them to be bigger and then they’ll be velociraptor size and we’ll have to worry about them gobbling down the other farm animals.

Apocalyptic scenarios always seem to revolve around velociraptors with me. Unhealthy obsession or just common sense?

Comment from dissent
Time: May 15, 2017, 9:43 pm

Oh c’mon, this doesn’t happen.

Just tell the replicator if you want Original or Extra Crispy.

Comment from Formerly known as Skeptic
Time: May 16, 2017, 8:45 pm

“Chicken-of-Tomorrow” Isn’t that just an egg?

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