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Home > Birds > Do Chickens Like Music? Vet-Reviewed Auditory Science

Do Chickens Like Music? Vet-Reviewed Auditory Science

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Dr. Luqman Javed

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The information is current and up-to-date in accordance with the latest veterinarian research.

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If you keep chickens, you know that they have value far beyond providing eggs and/or meat. They can easily become part of the family and have a knack for keeping you entertained with their unique personalities and quirky behaviors.

It’s no secret that chickens enjoy different types of enrichment and thrive best when they are well cared for. It’s a good idea to keep your chickens active and provide them with various forms of stimulation, both mentally and physically.

A question that is commonly asked in the chicken world is whether our feathered friends like music. The short answer is yes. This has been put to the test with scientific studies and the results are quite interesting.

chicken feet divider

Yes, Chickens Do Like Music

The University of Bristol in the United Kingdom completed a study in conjunction with one of the largest egg-producing companies 1 to see what kind of effect music has on chickens. For 8 weeks, researchers played music at different times throughout the day in the hens’ nesting boxes.

The different types of music used in the study included classical, pop, and rock. Of course, in some boxes, no music was played to give a better understanding of how the chickens with no access to music compared to those that did.

It was ultimately concluded that all types of music intrigued the hens. It was even shown that the hens entered the nesting boxes 159% more when the music was playing. This study also revealed that classical music was preferred over other genres.

Interestingly, classical music even resulted in a 6% increase in egg production when compared to the other nesting boxes. According to the researcher Isabelle Pettersson, it is believed this could be due to the soothing properties of classical music.

Cream Legbar Chicken
Image By: Lilly Trott, Shutterstock

Other Ways to Keep Your Chickens Enriched

Aside from playing some classical music in your chicken coop to keep your chickens enriched, there are also some other recommendations you can implement to keep your flock well enriched.

Provide a Safe Space to Free Range

To keep your chickens as comfortable as possible, you should provide them with a safe, spacious area to free range. Allowing your flock to roam is beneficial both physically and mentally by allowing them to exercise, forage, socialize, and express themselves.

Free ranging should be done with caution since chickens can easily fall victim to predators when left to roam around. It’s a good idea to have secure fencing or a secure coop in place for your free-range area.

Cream Legbar Chicken
Image Credit: Racheal Carpenter, Shutterstock

Take Safety Measures to Protect Against Predators

Chickens have their fair share of predators and as a keeper, you have to do what you can to keep them safe. Predators include coyotes, foxes, bobcats, weasels, birds of prey, and raccoons. You also have to worry about domesticated dogs and cats, too.

You need to provide a secure coop that is free from any entry points that would allow these predators access. Most of these animals will come out to feed at night, so make sure your flock is locked up and secure every evening.

Having roosters may not be possible for all backyard chicken operations, especially inside city limits, but those who are prepared for roosters can benefit from their protective nature and tendency to sound the alarm when they sense a potential predator.

Feed a Healthy Diet

A nutritionally balanced diet is important for all animals, and you must feed your hens a high-quality, well-balanced diet to keep them healthy. Nutrient deficiencies can lead to various issues such as feather picking, egg eating, and even cannibalism.

Your chickens will also enjoy a variety of treats but be sure to do so sparingly since you don’t want them putting on excess fat, since it can affect laying and their overall health. Always make sure you have fresh, clean water available for your flock, too.

asil chickens eating
Image Credit: REHAN HUSSAIN IMAM, Shutterstock

Avoid Overcrowding

Overcrowded coops can be very problematic. When there is overcrowding, the chickens will lack the space to exercise and move, will not have the ability to rest peacefully, and will be subject to being walked all over by others.

Overcrowding can cause undue stress, which can lead to aggression, feather plucking, and health problems. Make sure you have the appropriate number of chickens for the space you have available for them.

Set an Area Aside for Dust Baths

Chickens may not take traditional baths, but they sure do love dust baths. Rolling in the dirt is an important behavior that must be encouraged. This practice helps them maintain healthy skin, shed any loose feathers, and discourage insects and parasites that may have infested them. No flock should go without access to a dust bath, and both the mental and physical benefits will not only affect your chickens but your entire operation.

Two chickens in a dust bath

Provide Forms of Enrichment

Chickens are incredibly inquisitive creatures, so you should aim to provide them with various types of enrichment. You can really get creative when it comes to chicken entertainment, so you will have plenty of options to choose from.

Chickens will enjoy having access to hay bales, perches, and other climbing platforms. They will also enjoy jungle gyms, obstacles, and playing with bright shiny objects. They also enjoy mirrors, as they tend to interact with their reflection. A chicken’s favorite type of enrichment will be a place where they can gather together and play as a group.

new chicken divider


There are plenty of ways to keep your chickens happy and enriched. Studies have shown that not only do chickens like all kinds of music, but they especially prefer classical tunes. Music resulted in hens gravitating to their nesting boxes 159 percent more when the music was playing, and classical music even showed a 6 percent increase in laying. There would certainly be no harm in installing a radio in your chicken coop and allowing them to enjoy music just like you do.

Featured Image Credit: EF Photography, Shutterstock

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