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Use these quick facts to better understand how your chickens operate.
Life span: 10 to 11 years
Heart rate: 220 to 360 beats per minute
Respiratory rate: 12 to 37 breaths per minute
Temperature: 103.6 to 109.9 degrees F
Water intake: 210 to 400 milliliters per day
Urine volume: 100 to 200 milliliters per kilogram of weight per day
Gastrointestinal transit time: Approximately 4 hours
Blood volume: 6 to 12 milliliters per 1/10 kilogram of weight Chicken Reproduction
Puberty: 4½ to 5 months
Age at laying: Approximately 6 months
Clutch size: 5 to 8
Incubation: 21 days
Birth weight: 30 to 80 grams
Independence of chicks: 3 months of age Chicken Anatomy
Legs: Featherless in most breeds; can propel body up to 9 mph
Nails: Sharp; used for scratching in dirt, grasping to perch
Wings: Short flight feathers, limited lifting ability
Tail: Short in hens, fuller in roosters; used for balance in flight and perching
Ears: Sizable hole on either side of head, covered by feathers; fleshy earlobe just below ear hole
Eyes: Set on the side of the head for a 360-degree view; sole means of identifying food; color vision superior to that of humans
Beak: Jawbone covered with lightweight keratin sheath; used to pick up food, grooming and fighting
Nostrils: Located on top of beak; poor sense of smell
Mouth: No dentition; tongue used to push feed to back of mouth for swallowing
Comb: Fleshy protuberance on the top of chicken’s head containing nerve endings and blood vessels; larger on roosters than on hens
Wattle: Fleshy protuberance hanging below a chicken’s beak; contains nerve endings and blood vessels; and matches the comb color; larger on roosters than on hens