Blindsided chickens

12 06 2016

Screen Shot 2016-06-11 at 8.49.36 PMJust analysed some T-maze data for Misha last night, to check out a pattern he thought was in there.

He turned out to be right: in a way that’s half sad, half funny, it seems our hens did not make real choices in the T maze (we were trying to find out if they really do like forest videos). This breed has a large droopy comb which in most birds basically occludes one eye (we call it a ‘combover’…). In the T maze,  it turned out that as a rule, in each trial each hen simply headed off in the one direction she could see! Perfectly sensible behaviour (and our hilariously failed little experiment has really made me wonder how else being accidentally monocular affects these poor birds).