Approved by Dr. Luqman Javed
Certain questions have hounded humanity since the dawn of our existence: Are we alone in the universe? Is there a greater meaning to our lives? And most of all, do chickens fart? The short answer is yes, chickens can fart, but the mechanisms are slightly different than how we do so.
If you’ve ever seriously wondered about poultry flatulence, don’t despair — we’re here to provide the answers that you seek.
Do Chickens Fart?
The short answer is that yes, chickens can fart. Just about any animal that has intestines is capable of farting, in fact.
Chickens contain a pair of ceca in their large intestines. These specialized digestive tubes contain bacteria that ferment any undigested food which makes it past their small intestine. The fermentation process gives rise to a variety of gasses: methane, carbon dioxide, and hydrogen sulfide.
Chickens also possess a cloaca, a common passageway for their urates, feces, urine, and eggs. Chickens release all waste content in their cloaca simultaneously by producing droppings. When they do so, they also release the gasses produced by their intestines. The precise term for this substance is flatus. Releasing this is the chicken’s equivalent of farting.
While chicken farts can certainly stink, the jury’s still out on whether they’re audible. Some farmers and chicken owners claim to have heard them, while others insist that they heard something else that they mistook for a fart.
We may not have reliable data on whether you can hear a chicken fart, but look on the bright side: It means a research job is open in the field.
Are Chicken Farts Ever a Cause for Concern?
While the idea may be funny, chicken farts aren’t a laughing matter if they mean that your pets are in poor health.
Don’t just rely on their flatulence to get an idea of their overall health, though. It isn’t possible to tell if what you’re smelling is a fart or their feces, as they pass these together. Look for other signs that your hen is unwell, such as a reduced appetite, a decrease in egg production, lethargy, or general unthriftiness.
Is There Anything That Can Be Done About the Smell?
Your chicken coop will never smell like a candle shop, no matter what you do. Luckily, there are a few things that you can do to mitigate the smell.
Your best bet is to keep the coop as clean as possible. Try to give them the best bedding possible; hemp is an excellent choice, as it absorbs a ton of moisture and odor while being easy to dispose of.
Disinfect the coop regularly to remove poop and other smelly debris. This will also help keep your chickens healthy, and it will remove all the other offending odors from the coop.
Make sure that the place is well-ventilated too. Putting a vent in the coop will allow air to circulate, keeping everything smelling fresh.
So yes, chickens do fart, and yes, they’re as awful as you’d expect. While this may be an unorthodox question, it’s good for coop owners to know what’s normal when it comes to their birds’ digestive practices.
- You may also want to read: Do Chickens Have Teeth? How Do They Eat?
Featured Image Credit: Capri23auto, Pixabay