Agriculture
Flush-Free Fertilizer
Cleaning Up Fish Farms
Middle school science adventures
Amphibians
Toads
Salamanders
Salamanders and Newts
Animals
Armadillo
Cool Penguins
Odor-Chasing Penguins
Behavior
The (kids') eyes have it
Ear pain, weight gain
A Light Delay
Birds
Nightingales
Vultures
Ducks
Chemistry and Materials
The Taste of Bubbles
The science of disappearing
Batteries built by Viruses
Computers
Galaxies on the go
Lighting goes digital
Fingerprint Evidence
Dinosaurs and Fossils
Dino-Dining Dinosaurs
Digging Dinos
Some Dinos Dined on Grass
E Learning Jamaica
Results of GSAT are in schools this week
2014 GSAT Results for Jamaican Kids
E Learning in Jamaica WIN PRIZES and try our Fun Animated Games
Earth
Springing forward
Watering the Air
Greener Diet
Environment
Improving the Camel
The Wolf and the Cow
Food Web Woes
Finding the Past
Untangling Human Origins
A Long Haul
Ancient Art on the Rocks
Fish
Great White Shark
Freshwater Fish
Marlin
Food and Nutrition
Building a Food Pyramid
The Color of Health
The Essence of Celery
GSAT English Rules
Whoever vs. Whomever
Order of Adjectives
Capitalization Rules
GSAT Exam Preparation Jamaica
GSAT Practice Papers | GSAT Mathematics | Maths
Results of GSAT are in schools this week
How are students placed after passing the GSAT exam
GSAT Exams Jamaica Scholarships
2014 GSAT Results for Jamaican Kids
GSAT Exam Preparation
GSAT stars reap scholarship glory
GSAT Mathematics
A Sweet Advance in Candy Packing
How to Slice a Cake Fairly
Losing with Heads or Tails
Human Body
Music in the Brain
Attacking Asthma
Gut Microbes and Weight
Invertebrates
Earthworms
Daddy Long Legs
Spiders
Mammals
Sea Lions
Hoofed Mammals
Mongooses
Parents
Choosing a Preschool: What to Consider
How children learn
What Not to Say to Emerging Readers
Physics
Invisibility Ring
One ring around them all
IceCube Science
Plants
Bright Blooms That Glow
Stalking Plants by Scent
The algae invasion
Reptiles
Gila Monsters
Box Turtles
Snakes
Space and Astronomy
Melting Snow on Mars
Sun Flips Out to Flip-Flop
Burst Busters
Technology and Engineering
A Micro-Dose of Your Own Medicine
Reach for the Sky
Bionic Bacteria
The Parts of Speech
Pronouns
What is a Preposition?
What is a Noun
Transportation
Troubles with Hubble
How to Fly Like a Bat
Flying the Hyper Skies
Weather
The Best Defense Is a Good Snow Fence
Where rivers run uphill
Polar Ice Feels the Heat
Add your Article

Chicken Talk

Translate this: Cluck cluck. Tck tck. Squawk. Get it? If you were a chicken, you might. According to new research, chickens make meaningful sounds that refer to objects around them. A pecking chicken that goes "tck, tck, tck," for example, is saying, "Hey look, there's food!" (You can hear a chicken's food calls at http://www.sciencenews.org/20061118/foodcall.aif .) The discovery marks the first time that an animal other than people, monkeys, and other primates has been found to make sounds that, like words, represent something in the world around them. The existence of word-like clucks is not a total surprise to scientists. Previous studies had shown that male chickens make certain clucking noises when they find food. When female chickens (hens) hear these noises, they stomp over and either take some food from a male's beak or stare at the ground looking for morsels to eat. "They look like people who've lost their glasses," says Chris Evans of Macquarie University in Sydney, Australia. Other studies had also shown, for example, that chickens make alarm calls when scared by an intruder. The calls differ depending on whether the intruder walks or flies toward them. And other chickens react by looking either up in the air or around on the ground. This behavior did not necessarily prove that a cluck works like a word that refers to some object around the bird, Evans says. Instead, it was possible that the noise simply triggers a reflex in the birds to, for example, start pecking for supper. To investigate further, researchers conducted a number of food-based trials. In half of the tests, the scientists allowed hens to find three kernels of corn—not enough to fill the animals up, but enough to alert them that food was around. "The corn is like chocolate for them," Evans says. In the other half of the tests, the hens didn't get a treat. Next, the scientists played recordings of male food calls for the hens. In response, hens that already knew food was available looked at the ground for just 3 seconds. Food-deprived hens, on the other hand, searched for an average of 7.5 seconds after hearing the male calls. On the other hand, when the hens heard alarm calls, both fed and unfed birds reacted in the same way. These results suggest that the food-searching response is not a reflex, the researchers say. Instead, the birds seem to know what the food call means, and their reaction depends on what they already know about the area's food supply. Now try again: tck, tck, tck. Feeling hungry, yet?—E. Sohn

Chicken Talk
Chicken Talk








Designed and Powered by HBJamaica.com™