Did you know May 4th is International Respect for Chickens Day! Created by United Poultry Concerns (UPC), an activist group and sanctuary for chickens and other birds used for food, Respect for Chickens Day is the perfect time to educate others about these much under-appreciated birds.
Unbeknownst to many, chickens are clever, social birds. They have self-awareness and the capacity to feel and suffer. And like other animals, they are exploited in many ways:
• Over 9 billion are killed for food every year.
• Used to study cancer, vision, and embryonic development, as well as to produce vaccines and antibodies.
• Agriculture research on breeding and genetics.
• Environmental toxicity testing.
• Chick hatching exercises.
Check out UPC’s webpage on School Hatching Projects which has great resources for educators, parents, and advocates to help teach kids about chickens with respect.
Also check out this Scientific American article titled The Startling Intelligence of the Common Chicken which explains that chickens are smart, and they possess an understanding of their world – which raises troubling questions about how they are treated on factory farms.