It’s not unusual for animals to be calculating towards human beings, even domesticated ones. After all, one has to be selective in nature in order to survive and animals still have this instinct in spades. Chickens, however, have been proven to be a lot more, uh… fussy, about human beings as research has shown that they actually prefer attractive people.
Now we all know why they crossed the road; to get to the attractive people on the other side. It turns out, as you are judging the “Instagrammability” of your chicken wings, it is also judging you back by your looks… well, not really. However, live chickens do that. In fact, chickens have been used to study animal cognition for a long time.
Turns out, they can and do recognize faces of up to 30 other individual chickens. They can also do this to human beings, meaning they certainly recognize your face and how “beautiful” it is. By beautiful, we mean symmetrical, which is the universal standard for beauty. Yes, chickens can recognize the symmetry of attractive people faces and prefer them.
Now, if you were wondering how this study was done, it involved showing pictures of human faces to chickens. The researchers showed female human faces to cocks (male chickens, mind you) and they also showed male human faces to hens. The chickens then pecked more at the screens showing symmetrical faces, basically attractive people.
The good news is that chickens do not use dating apps and will never swipe left to your asymmetrical(?) face. The bad news is that the admiration for facial symmetry is quite ubiquitous among most mammals, including humans. After all, symmetry does mean good bones or genes. Well, now you know chickens are also shallow creatures but at least you can get back at them. Go easy on those wings and nuggets.
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