Chicken are one of the most common and widespread domestic animals, with about 20 billion individual chicken in the world. Chicken are most valued for laying eggs, which are an important part in many human diets.
Like Humans, chicken are omnivores which means they eat pretty much everything they can swallow and digest, for them this includes all kinds of grain and seeds, but also insect as well as even some small animals, such as lizards and mice.
If they are not slaughtered for their meat, chicken may live up to 10 years. The oldest known chicken reached a proud age of 16 years.
Chicken are very social creatures. They live in a community and even share the incubation of eggs. They have a “pecking order“, which establishes on who takes superiority over another. The higher a chicken is in this hierarchy, the better food and nesting place it gets. Interrestingly it is said, that a rooster will always call for his hens to eat first if he discovers valuable food. Such behaviour was already advised for humans in the Talmud, making the cock (rooster) a model for gallantry. Hens put on the same behaviour in caring for their chicks.
While the word chicken as a term for grown-ups as well as newborn chicken has become common, the actual term for the animal is fowl while chicken originally only referred to the young fowl.
To show his desire to mate with a hen, the rooster dances in a circle and then raises one wing. She may then decide, if she wants to give in to his advances.
The original version of this model was created for the Chinese Year of the chicken, where it is a tradition to put up figures of the animal which the year is assigned to in the Chinese zodiac. In the chinese zodiac, one kind of animal is associated with each year of a twelve year cycle. 2017 for example is the year of the chicken (or rooster).
While the chinese character for chicken, 鸡 ji, stands for neither male nor female chicken, it is usually understood as a rooster, and is also translated to english as such.
People born in the year of the rooster are said to be very sociable people. They care a lot about their appearance and they enjoy to entertain and host others, which they are good at. They are sharp, practical and resourceful,but also like to dream, even though they may not find it necessary to actually fulfill their dreams. They are loyal and caring friends and partners but tend to be also very frank and can sometimes appear blunt.