How to Speak Chicken

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date: 28 Nov 2017

Member Reviews

Hey, I am so sorry for such late review, got completely sidetracked by life and other things. Loved the book and as ex farmer can tell there was so much truth there!
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Brilliant, a light hearted and most enjoyable read. Makes a change to read something light and breezy!
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Ever since I was little, I always loved the books that gave insight into the minds of animals, so this book is a treat!  it clearly explains how chickens have different sounds for different occasions, and even a name for the human in their life (so now I really want chickens so that they can give me a chicken name)!  My students would enjoy this book, too!
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A lovely book for new chicken living novices and experienced fowl handlers alike!
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Disclaimer due to Amazon rules: I was gifted a free electronic copy of this book, via Netgalley, by the publisher. I am not obligated, nor being forced, to post a review – I am doing it of my own free will as I enjoy reviewing.

On advice from Amazon, and based on their emailed reply I can say – “My review is given voluntarily and the Author/publisher does not require a review in exchange for the book, or attempt to influence my review.”

I would like to thank Storey Publishing for providing me with a free electronic ARC of this book, via Netgalley, in exchange for an open and honest review.

Hello everyone, I’m back! Well, I hope to be back and to be back I need to start with my backlog… so I do apologise if this review is a little sketchy in places as I read ‘How to speak chicken’ back in September/October and since then my electronic copy has expired. So I just need to try and work from memory about it all.

Firstly, I found it a highly enjoyable read. I am a chook lady, I had chickens as a child, convinced my husband a few years ago to let us get chickens for our kids… and currently have ten. Three Isa Brown, three Australorps, three French Wheaten Marans and a Wyandotte. The last four listed were newly acquired while reading this book. Possible coincidence? ;-) 

And we do indeed love talking to them and know they talk back in different tones and voices and we use different chicken noises and motions depending on which chicken we are addressing. So, yeah, perhaps I am one of those “crazy chicken ladies”… and Proud!

So it was a delight to read Ms Caughey’s book. A lady after my own heart with similar loves and understandings of our feather babies. 

Yes there are other “how to raise” chicken books out there. I’ve even read, reviewed and enjoyed a couple. But what puts ‘How to speak Chicken’ apart from them is the lyrical, loving tone used by its author. This isn’t see looking after chooks from a “its a pet that gives us eggs and poops a lot” point of view. It is from the same point of view I see chickens “its one of my little girlies who clucks and carries on, needs cuddles, friends, toys… and lays eggs and poops a lot”. So… it is a book on looking after chickens to your best ability, but told from the view point of someone who sees them as more than just some dumb bird. As a chicken being a dumb bird is as accurate a description as me being a twenty something skinny supermodel. Yeah, not that accurate. ;-)

The basic chicken care is all there, but just in a lovely whimsical manner that I really did love.

For the technical side of things – the formatting, layout and pictures were of the usual exceptional standard I have come to expect from Storey Publishing.

Would I recommend this book to others?

Yes I would… but they would have to be quirky souls like myself able to cope with a DIY book on raising chickens that comes in a whimsical manner. Some people might need a more serious book than this, but they would be missing out. ;-)

Would I buy this book for myself?

Maybe… Yes I loved it, and yes I own chickens… but did I really learn a LOT of stuff I didn’t already know? Not really. It would all come down to missing reading it and wanting to own it again and then seeing if I could buy a copy here in Australia. I really did enjoy reading my electronic version, but feel it would be much nicer to have in paper. It’s just one of those things… sitting out on the banana lounge in the middle of the lawn, stack of books and herd of chickens. Perfect book for a reading day like that.
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This book was so fun! I was excited to read it, because we hope to get chickens soon and I want to know as much as I can about them.

Once I started reading I almost couldn't put it down, which is really strange considering that this is a book about...chickens! The pictures were so cute and I found myself smiling over the crazy antics of these birds.

I would recommend this book for anyone who is looking into getting chickens or wants to understand more about their funny chatter.
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I have never understood the fascination with chickens. However, I have several friends who have added chicken coops to their backyards and I have recently found myself interested in each chicken's personality and their antics. After reading this book, I think I can safely say I am into chickens. I know that I will purchase copies to send to my friends in San Diego and Australia and I look forward to their feedback as well.
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Melissa Caughey's How to Speak Chicken focuses on chicken behavior especially the how and why.  This is a wonderful book for new chicken owners.  Long time chicken owners will find themselves nodding along at the information included.  There is still something for everyone to learn about chickens from this book.  The gorgeous chicken photos were an added bonus!
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Part science, part history, some anecdotes and delightful stories.
If you have chickens, if you've thought about getting chickens, if you just enjoy great information and stories about animals, read this book.
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It looks like the end of the year is almost nothing but five star books for me.  WooHoo!!  

This book is no different.  It was a really sweet and informative book about, of all things, chickens.  I loved it.

This is what "Esther the Wonder Pig" SHOULD have been like.  That book was a vegan screed that put my back up.  THIS was a warm and loving look at chickens, how they all have their own personalities, how smart they are and the sociology of the flock, with and without roosters.  

Not ONCE did the author say that we shouldn't eat chickens or that eating them was murder.  

But her loving attitude and the way she wrote about the chickens in her flock, past and present, made me cry and vow to never eat chicken again!  

I need to avoid all books about cows, sheep and goats, because I am running out of meat things I can eat, if I don't think about it too hard and ignore Jimminy Cricket on my shoulder...

This was a beautiful book, with really lush pictures, so clear that you can SEE the intelligence in the eyes of the chickens.  

The author clearly loves her subject and she is able to pass that love and wonder on to the reader.  This book was one of my top five this year and I highly recommend for all to read it.  5, feathery, sweet and warm, stars!

My thanks to NetGalley and Storey Publishing, LLC  for an eARC copy of this book to read and review.
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I am not called “the crazy chook lady” for nothing, so of course I absolutely had to read this book! After decades of keeping our own backyard chooks, who are a much loved part of our family, I have done a fair bit of reading on the subject and have quite a few “how to” chicken related books on my shelves. However, How to Speak Chicken is delightfully different. Instead of giving advice on keeping chickens, it delves into the subject of how chickens communicate, and how we can get more out of our flock if we are able to understand their language. 

The author’s love for her flock shines through on every page, as she shares both her own insights as well as latest research findings about how intelligent chickens really are. I found it utterly fascinating, even though I had suspected that there is a lot more to these lovable creatures than we give them credit for. Did you know that chickens can remember up to 20 members of their flock, and have a unique call (or “name”) for each one of them, including you (once you have been accepted into their flock)? Can you tell when they are warning you of a perceived danger from the ground as opposed to danger from the air? Have you ever suspected that chickens can sleep with half of their brain still wide-awake and alert for danger? I didn’t, but ever since reading about chicken communication I have been a lot more attuned to the call of my own hens and how they “chat” with their sisters and members of our family. I watched in fascination as the new puppy was initially greeted with a “danger from ground” alert, but is now accepted with soft clucks as she sniffs around the chook pen. 

If you are a chicken lover, or have a chicken lover in your midst, this delightful book would make a perfect Christmas present. The charming and uplifting pictures of various chickens provide a colourful backdrop to the interesting information contained in its pages. Despite being informative, the text is easy to read and devoid of the scientific lingo that tends to exclude some readers – this is a book that can be read and enjoyed by the whole family. Full of love for our feathered friends, How to Speak Chicken was both one of the most informative as well as uplifting books of the year for me – I loved it. So much that I have dominated a few lunchtime conversations with “did you know that chickens .....” Hopefully friends and family will either share my enthusiasm or learn to forgive me! 

I highly recommend How to Speak Chicken to any chicken lover or anyone who is still sitting on the fence about them – apart from learning to appreciate the intelligence of these loveable backyard creatures, the fun and fascinating facts contained in the book will make you a star of any dinner conversation (just ask my family ;).
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As a backyard chicken enthusiast, I have read and owned many books on raising poultry. This book is unlike any that I've ever read. I couldn't exactly follow the sounds ("chicken talk") described in the book, but that's okay. There was plenty more to love! The photos are beautiful, the personal stories are interesting, and the general information about owning chickens is very beneficial and useful. I highly recommend this book to anyone who already has chickens or is considering bringing a flock of chickens into their family. You will want to have a copy of this book on your shelf. Thank you to the publisher and Netgally for allowing me to preview this book in exchange for a review.
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This would make a perfect gift for anyone with hens or an interest in them. The pages are wonderfully colourful, each one having a background of either feathers or claw prints. The photographs are a treasure and the narrative interesting (I speak as a long time OCD= obsessive chicken disorder). I knew hens had a language but not quite what. I may even have my own name my flock have given me! I think that this book would also be  suitable for children who have hens at home and so can learn more about them and their wonderful ways. It gives a history, lifecycle, needs, intelligence, eyesight, key skills etc etc. Whether you are a newbie to hens or a long time keeper you should find this book interesting. there are also some wonderful quotes: “All who wander are not lost”- J. R.R Tolkien. ” Friendship is a single soul dwelling in two bodies”- Aristotle.  A perfect Christmas gift. I voluntarily chose to read this ARC and all opinions in this review are my own and completely unbiased.
(rest of links on publication day)
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Most everyone loves chickens. They are cute and fuzzy. They are excellent bug control for your yard and are great for reducing your waste when it comes to food leftovers I saw this book available for request and decided I needed to expand my chicken knowledge. We currently have 100+ chickens in our flock so it was the perfect opportunity to find out what makes our chickens tick.

In this book, the author touches on different subjects including how chickens speak to each other. What the sound they make when there is a sky threat, a ground threat. When a chicken lays an egg and when another chicken is calling to friends. Did you know that chickens even have a call for you? Next time you go to your chicken coop keep an ear out and maybe you will hear the same sound every time they see you. Did you know that chickens brains operate on separate hemispheres??!! They can sleep with one eye shut and be asleep with that side of the brain while the other eye is wide open and awake. I could go on and on about this book and the facts I learned but no one wants to listen to that. All I will say is go get this book when it comes out and find out for yourself all the interesting chicken facts I that was not aware of.

This book was all sorts of educational. The author has degrees in medicine, anthropology, etc. So I knew the book would definitely teach me something. I found myself looking at my chickens in a whole new light. Am I going to go sit in their pen like the author suggests? Probably not. But I will brawk at them more when I take them the table scraps. As I read this book I would find something interesting and inform my mom and husband. The book was well researched and very easy to read. At 144 pages it wasn’t something that you had to wade through to get to the end. The author mixed in information about chickens with stories about raising her own flock of fluffy chickens. Doing so helped keep the book fresh and interesting. I had quite a few “ahhhhaaaa”, “oh my gosh-no way” moments. I cried when her favorite pet chicken Tilly died. Who knew that chickens could be so fascinating?
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chickens! very informative. It's the kind of fun book to have on you coffee table
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Thoroughly enjoyed HOW TO SPEAK CHICKEN.. As a chicken owner, I was really in the concept. 
I love watching my hens, and find them therapeutic. It was real interesting reading the psychology behind interacting with chickens and also their dynamics with the group. The pictures alone make this book wonderful coffee table book and/or gift.
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In accordance with the publisher's request, I will post a review shortly before the release date. Until then, I can say I liked this book and have ordered a copy.

Edited October 12, 2017: Since I have just reviewed Kathy Shea Mormino's (The Chicken Chick's) book, I did not want my blog readers to just look at Caughey's book as yet another chicken book next month. So I wrote a companion review since I feel both books fill an important niche for chicken owners. Sorry if this is earlier than you wanted but I hope my review will help her pre-order stats. I make it clear that both books are of value.
How to Speak Chicken is another excellent entry for a chicken-keeper's library. It publishes in November 2017 and it's one to pre-order. Whereas The Chicken Chick Kathy Shea Mormino's recently published book about chicken-keeping provides us with a lot of the important details about chicken keeping, Melissa Caughey's equally excellent book provides us with a wealth of information and insights into chicken behavior. Caughey's book is also a good book for families. (More on that below.)

While addressing some of the same aspects that Mormino describes in terms of chicken, health, comfort, and safety, Caughey provides examples of what your chickens may be telling you with their behavior and overall affect. That to me, as a novice chicken owner, is invaluable. We can have all the facts at our fingertips but if we don't understand what is going on with a chicken (what they are "telling us") we will have a much harder time fixing problems for our cherished birds. 

This book, with its many beautiful photos, is one that I would also recommend as an excellent starter for families with children who are interested in helping with chicken-keeping. Teaching a child to look at animal's behavior as a key to their health and wellbeing is a great gift. Chicken social dynamics, in particular, are well described in this book and children can spend time observing and thinking about how their chickens relate to one another. Encouraging your children to really look at animals, and analyze their behavior, is going to be an enrichment in their lives that will eventually benefit every animal (even the human ones) they encounter. Caughey's book offers just that opportunity.
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I thought this was such a cute book. I requested it because I have a friend who is a Free Range Chicken farmer and she has all these chickens (Meat and Egg birds) and i think it would be the perfect Christmas present for her. If you are a farmer, have a chicken, or just like chickens or animals in general I think this would be a good book to check out
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