Secret of the Rooster's Crow
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As a diurnal animal (one that is active during the day), the rooster starts his daily doings when the sun comes up. If you think about early morning, it’s almost always associated with bird song. Most birds seem to spend time shouting their messages to the world in the morning, and chickens are no different.
David Feldman addresses this question in When Do Fish Sleep? He quotes Janet Hinshaw of the Wilson Ornithological Society who says, “Most of the crowing takes place in the morning, as does most singing, because that is when the birds are most active, and most of the territorial advertising takes place then. Many of the other vocalizations heard throughout the day are for other types of communication, including flocking calls, which serve to keep members of a flock together and in touch if they are out of sight from one another.”
The reason that we associate a rooster’s crow with the dawn is most likely because that’s when it’s most noticeable to our sleepy selves. When the relative quiet of night is disturbed by the local rooster, we sit up, take notice, and maybe grumble a little on the way to the barn.
Despite childhood close encounters of a negative kind, Associate Editor Jenn Nemec is slowly learning to love poultry.
Have a country question you always wondered about? Email it to QuizGrit@Grit.com, and we may answer it here.
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