Chickens We Eat

Science now proves they are highly intelligent, sensitive and family oriented.

Chickens of Camphill Ballybay, Ireland
Photos credit: Derrick Lim

About 30 years ago, one kampung chicken would be bought and eaten by a family, over several meals in a week. Today, an overweight family waddles into KFC and each person eats a quarter of a chicken. Even the nasi lemak breakfast now comes with a piece of deep fried chicken.

Even worse, we seem to be so unaware of the suffering we inflict on what is now known to be highly intelligent and sensitive animals; they are caged in high-tech sunless chicken farms, fed un-natural GMO foods…suffering until they are slaughtered. And, we eat their meat, believing that, as it is white meat, it will give us good protein. But in fact they are one of the major causes of our ill-health.

But this short paper is not about how unhealthy is chicken meat but to awaken our Conscience about an animal species we have no compunction eating. Just think how the term ‘MOTHER HEN’ came about? It’s because in the olden days, people lived with chickens free ranging in their backyards and could see how nurturing hens are with their brood.

Even the ‘vain’ Rooster is caring and I have seen, for myself, how when he finds some fat worms, he quickly calls for the hens to come and eat.

So search for “How intelligent are Chickens?” and see what you will find. Or watch the video below and let me know in the comments what do you think:

Hope they were not tortured to learn these ‘tricks’

How a nameless Hen…became family pet Silver! (narrated by Grandma Starseed Betty L Khoo-Kingsley)

Nameless was just one of 15 white leghorn hens in Starseed Sanctuary, Darwin-rural. They foraged in a strip of fenced food forest with a hen-house they naturally trooped in to roost, when darkness fell. Or when they wanted to lay an egg. But whatever insects they found amongst the eucalyptus trees and dry stony ground, had to be supplemented by organic chicken feed that owner Betty imported from Queensland.

Leghorn chickens
Photo credit:

One day, Betty noticed that one of the hens was sick and some of the others seemed to be bullying her. So she decided to put the sick hen in their Bali bathroom, to rest and recover.

When Caryn Dunning, with five-year-old daughter Zoe visited and saw the sick hen crouched in a corner of the bathroom looking miserable, Caryn said:

“Let me take her back to my place and we will nurse her back to health.” I readily agreed.

Caryn had her own five-acre Elemental Garden with a menagerie of animals and a big pond. All the chickens and ducks free-ranged happily, everyone had a name and Zoe and her sister Jade had many animals to feed and cuddle.

No-name Hen was given a name, ‘Silver’, and extra cuddles.

In such a happy household, Silver grew strong and healthy. In fact, I forgot about no-name hen until one day when I visited Caryn’s Elemental Garden and I was introduced to Silver! By this time, all the other hens in Starseed Sanctuary had grown old and died naturally, replaced by a new batch.

I realised then that far more important than eating pricey organic feed and living in a fancy hen-house, it was the love and individual caring that Silver got with Caryn and girls that enabled her to live much longer and more happily than her sister hens.

One response to “Chickens We Eat”

  1. Hi Betty,
    We met at Sutera Resort year 2009 and was invited to your home for a harmony nasi Bryani lunch around Lynwood Grove Estate. Thanks for saving the Earth and U made a special differences every year.
    Choo EM


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