Most Canadians eat chicken at least once a week, but what do you REALLY know about chicken? Here are a few things that might surprise you.
They’re secretly dinosaurs.
Like most birds, chickens share a great deal of DNA with their thunder lizard ancestors, however, according to a July 2010 story in the Times & Transcript, recent DNA analysis shows that T-Rex and chickens are such extremely close cousins biologically that “science has no choice but to acknowledge that birds are, in reality, dinosaurs, not just critters evolved from them.” In fact, these genetic ties are so strong that one scientist (who was also the prime science advisor for the movie Jurassic Park) is currently working to get funding to create a brand new dinosaur, starting from a chicken embryo, that he has dubbed a “chickenosaurus.”
They came before the egg.
Sorry, Eggs. British scientists, who evidently have far too much time on their hands, used a supercomputer and over 5 million core hours of computer simulations to answer the question. Studying the proteins only found within a chicken’s ovaries and its effect on creating the hard shell of an egg overnight, they determined that only a chicken could produce a chicken egg, and therefore, it had to have come first.
There are hundreds of breeds of chicken.
In North America, there are only a few breeds raised for food, and a few raised for eggs, but across the world there are hundreds of breeds – some that look very much like the iconic chicken we all know, and some that look like vultures, some that are different colours, and even one called a Silkie, that has dark skin and looks oddly like a poodle. Then again, chickens probably think humans all look the same, too.
Chickens are omnivores
It’s true that chickens raised in Canada are entirely grain-fed, but it’s also true that while they love their veggies, chickens are meat-eaters as well. In fact, without proper protein in their diet, chickens will look to supplement their diet wherever they can – even if it means attacking one another. On the farm, chickens get their protein from their feed either in the form of grain or bone meal, while also snacking on the occasional bug wherever they can find it.
Canadian chickens are not raised with hormones.
Hopefully, if there were any facts here that you already knew, this was the one. Sadly, this is a question that we still find ourselves answering, even though feeding, injecting or otherwise administering hormones to chickens has been illegal in Canada since the 60s. So, if you see a label on chicken that reads “Hormone Free,” it doesn’t mean that the others are not. All chicken in Canada has been raised without added hormones.