Zhao Benshan’s famous golden saying left a deep impression on us, “laying rooster, fighter in rooster”, which was popular all over the country. It seems that in the eyes of the public, it is against the theory of biological evolution for hens to crow and cocks to lay eggs. The ancestor of domestic chicken is wild jungle fowl, which is the result of domestication. This process is very long. When there are roosters and hens, their division of labor and cooperation tasks are different. Roosters are responsible for crowing and hens are responsible for laying eggs. In rural areas, almost every family likes to raise hens, because hens can not only lay eggs, but also hatch chickens, which is the fundamental to maintain the survival of a family.
The biggest difference between cock and hen is: chromosome
What is the evolution of chicken? Many people say that the ancestor of chicken may be Tyrannosaurus Rex. American researchers extracted a protein similar to a certain protein in chicken from 68 million year old dinosaur bone fossils, which can indirectly prove that there is a certain association between chicken and dinosaur in a certain gene. According to relevant historical records, around 5300 ad, ancient Chinese ancestors began to raise chickens.
In nature, all animals are divided into male and female, and chromosome is the most significant feature of sex difference. Similarly, the chromosomes of cocks and hens are very different. The chromosome of rooster is ZZ, and the chromosome of hen is ZW. From the appearance, the size of rooster is obviously larger than that of hen, and the color of rooster’s hair is bright. At the same time, it also has a comb and a long pendant. Hens are small in size, their coat color is not as bright as cocks, and their crowns are also very small.
Since ancient times, there has been a saying in China that “five grains are abundant and six animals are prosperous”. The so-called “six livestock” refers to horses, cattle, sheep, pigs, dogs and chickens. Chicken as one of the six livestock, in ancient times, humans began to raise and domesticate pheasant to become domestic chicken. In the process of domesticating chickens, people are more used to raising chickens in cages, because chickens like freedom. They like to look for insects on the wide grassland, especially when some pheasants have enough to eat and drink, they will belong to the mountain forest. If you want to tame the chickens and prevent them from running out, you have to intervene. This is why the domesticated chickens are finally put into cages after screening. After a long period of domestication, the egg production of hens increased significantly, compared with the cock, it has less practical value. In the process of long-term domestication, the cock’s crown is becoming bigger and stronger, and its feathers are more and more bright.
Rooster crowing: an instinctive response to light stimulation
In the vast rural areas, rooster crowing is a common phenomenon. Every day before dawn, you can hear the rooster constantly crowing. In egg laying animals, the vision of chickens is the worst, even if there is a strong light, their eyes are just a vast expanse of white. This kind of phenomenon is the most common “green blindness” of our human beings. Especially at night, the chicken can’t see anything clearly at all, so for wolves, foxes and other large dangerous animals, chickens spend all the time in fear, and every night is hard for them. So when the morning is almost bright, the rooster will be very excited, and they will sing to express their inner joy. At the same time, it is also the rooster An instinctive response to seeing light stimulation!
To verify this, zoologists once conducted an experiment in which two groups of cocks were placed in different environments. One group of cocks was placed in a room with light like day, and the other group was placed in a dark room. Then the light of the two rooms was adjusted. If the light in a room with light as daytime is adjusted to the same intensity as dawn, the rooster in this space will appear continuous chirping, which shows that Rooster chirping is related to the intensity of dawn light. In addition, there are many kinds of cocks crowing, some calling the master to get up at dawn, and some courting to attract the attention of hens. In the countryside, many people like to raise chickens in the yard. If the rooster crows in the flock, it means that he is in the tree and shows his position. Other hens should listen to him!
The end of hen crowing is terrible: it is the biggest taboo in the countryside
If the hen’s patent is “laying eggs”, then the rooster’s patent is “crowing”. Every morning when it’s almost dawn, the rooster will crow one after another. It can be said that it’s very lively. When the owner hears the rooster crowing, he knows it’s already dawn, and then gets up early to work. However, not all roosters crow. Sometimes hens also crow. In rural areas, if anyone hears a hen crowing or sees a hen learning to rooster, he will kill the hen, and this practice has been spread for hundreds of years. Why on earth?
1. Superstition: predicting disaster
The ancients even worshipped the chicken in a sense. From emperors and generals to common people, people give chickens all kinds of beautiful yearning and expectation. As for sunrise crowing, it was first recorded in xuanzhongji: “to the east of Penglai, on the mountain of Daiyu, there are Fusang trees, which are ten thousand feet high. On the top of a tree, there is a pheasant, which nests on it. Every night at midnight, the crowing of the chickens in the sky, and the crowing of the sun and the crowing of the crows in the sun, all the chickens in the world crow. ” In addition, the ancients believed that the chicken was the best of all birds, which had the function of suppressing demons and subduing demons. During the Warring States period, there was a custom of killing chickens and hanging households to drive away ghosts and evil spirits. For example, in the pre Qin period, the ancients used chicken and chicken blood sacrifice activities. It is recorded in the general meaning of customs that “the sacrificial rites in the suburbs of Lu often use Danji as sacrificial rites to worship the sun, and use the sound of Chiyu as the imperial sound to get rid of the blame of the Marquis of Lu.” In short, in many parts of China, chickens are used as sacrificial offerings, and this custom is still popular today.
The older generation in rural areas believe that if a hen crows, it means that something bad will happen in the family. This is an ominous sign, so the best way is to kill the hen as soon as possible, and then sprinkle chicken blood in the yard to ward off evil spirits. In fact, as early as in ancient times, there were records about the singing of hens.
“Hen Si Chen” refers to the cock crowing at dawn. For emperors of all dynasties, if the hen crows at dawn, it means that there will be war in this country. As early as the Shang Dynasty, King Wu of Zhou satirized that King Zhou valued women, so he said that “the hen is the master of the morning, and the only way to get home”, which roughly means that the hen heralds the dawn is evil and disaster. King Zhou indulged in beauty all day long, spoiled Daji, and let her disturb the government and indulge. “Hen Si Chen” was born.
In addition, when Emperor Taizong encountered difficulties, he had to consult empress Chang sun about political affairs. Empress Chang sun immediately knelt down and said, “the hen is the morning, and the family is poor.” obviously, empress Chang sun’s implication is that she is a woman and not suitable to give advice. In the ancient society where men are superior to women, “hen Si Chen” also represents an exclusion of women’s participation in politics, which is a manifestation of the inequality between men and women in feudal society. Looking at modern times, it is superstitious to predict disaster by hen crowing, without scientific basis.
2. The chirping of hens is related to the physiological structure
In front of us, the biggest difference between hens and cocks is the chromosome. The chromosome of cocks is ZZ, and that of hens is ZW. There is a kind of “sex reversal” between cocks and hens. For example, there are a lot of androgens in the body of hens. The reason why hens can crow is also affected by the androgens in the body. There are many factors that cause “sex reversal”, such as physiological status, environmental impact and hormone treatment, which make the hens have sex reversal.
Related animal experts said that the phenomenon of hens crowing occurred one after another all over the country. Whether it is hens or cocks, they all have ovaries and testicles. Because there are fallopian tubes and ovaries on the left side of the adult hen’s body, under the interference and stimulation of the external environment, such as eating too much food containing androgen, its body will have pathological changes, unable to produce enough hormones. Once it is frightened, the hen will produce gonadal development, and the undifferentiated reproductive system on the right side can not be controlled by the hormones in the body, it will go out Now the “testis”, all the characteristics of the rooster will appear, such as stop laying eggs, comb gradually larger, leading to the “hen Si Chen” situation.
In the animal kingdom, in addition to the “sex reversal” in chickens, there are also some fish, such as Monopterus albus, which will spontaneously have sex reversal under the influence and stimulation of the external environment, resulting in hermaphroditic individuals with two types of sexual organs. In addition, the embryo of lion lizard living in the Australian desert can change its sex under high temperature environment, and the male can change its sex Sex is transformed into a female.
The picture shows the maned lion lizard
3. Hens crow, egg production becomes low, “aggressive” disturbs the flock, easy to be killed
For a rural family, raising a large number of hens is to improve egg production and increase family income. If a hen learns to sing, its egg production will decrease and gradually develop to the characteristics of a rooster. It is meaningless for rural families to continue raising it. In addition, if the hen appears after the ringing, its physiological characteristics have also changed significantly, easy to “aggressive”. For roosters, belligerence is its distinctive feature. Roosters will warn other roosters by crowing, “don’t come to my territory, or I’ll be rude.” When hens learn to crow, they will disturb the flock and make other hens uneasy. In this case, it is useless for the master to keep them. They can only be slaughtered to eliminate hidden dangers.
Although there is no obvious harm in the occurrence of sex reversal, once the gene remains in the organism, it will change the law of natural development. In our opinion, hens and roosters should perform their respective duties. Therefore, in some large breeding households, we should not use hormones or catalysts to change the genes of hens, improve egg production, reduce feeding costs, and change the hormone secretion in hens! Nature endows every animal and plant with the right to survive. May all life be treated by the tenderness of the world