Did you ever wonder why roosters crow?
If you live in the suburbs and large metropolitan areas, that thought probably will not appear among your various synaptic processes. Admit it. You would panic if you heard a rooster crow in your urban world.
If you were asleep, you would assume it was part of your after-partying-all-night hangover. Or, if you were driving, you might startle enough to swerve into the oncoming lane. We cannot accuse roosters of being shy, and they are loud.
But this writer’s assumptions about you are based on the following facts.
Even though you may buy eggs in a clean mega grocery store, the concept of seeing chickens and roosters, and their various barnyard antics is not part of your world view. Consequently, connecting chickens with the process of laying eggs or any of their other activities does not compute.
If people even bother to think about it, eggs come in tidy cartons. Chickens come in foam containers covered in see-through plastic, either cut in pieces or whole. But, the chicken is dead and has no feathers to pluck. All that farm-related stuff happens before the pampered public buys the product.
Even the more health-conscious folks who demand organic eggs and chickens have rarely or never plucked the feathers from a chicken, wrung its neck, or reached into nests to collect eggs.
People often think the difference between regular eggs and organic eggs is: organic eggs are not treated with antibiotics or hormones and receive the organic feed. Just because a chicken has the word organic attached to it does not mean the eggs come out pristine without a drop of poop nearby or on it.
There is a reason those store-bought eggs are so clean. The USDA requires the washing of eggs in warm water (to wash off the chicken poop and other unsavory things). Then the eggs must be rinsed with a warm water spray that includes a chemical sanitizer to remove any tenacious bacteria. That seems to negate the organic concept.
But we digress.
According to an informative website, EarthSky, part of the answer you seek regarding roosters comes from scientists. “A rooster crows because he has an internal clock that helps him anticipate sunrise. Like all birds, roosters sing – or crow – in a daily cycle.” The sunrise crowing is a way he confirms his territory. Similar to what a dog does, except the process is loud rather than odiferous.
However, the answer to our original question may be as simple as comparing a rooster to a young human male. Specifically, what we may perceive as college guy behavior. Before you indignant guys get your shorts in a twist, drinking, general carousing, and boasting of conquests is part of some college male behavior.
To continue the analogy, we get the impression that our rooster crows not only at sunrise but throughout the day. Sometimes it is a matter of stating I-am-the-lord-of-my-domain. Sometimes he brags after conquering yet another hen.
Admit it, does that not resemble locker room boasting among human males?
What we often forget is we are one backward step away from our animal nature. If we look around at our world or back through the pages of history, barbaric behavior is part of our human DNA.
In literature, we can point to William Golding’s “Lord of the Flies” or the more recent (2009) novel by William R. Forstchen “One Second After.” In more recent times: terrorist attacks throughout the world, like 9/11.
There is a reason we often utter the words “survival of the fittest” while watching a documentary on animals and their behavior. But when it comes to that step past survival to pure brutality, nothing compares to humans.
And that is one reason why parents must civilize the fruits of their loom instead of turning them loose without guidance. Otherwise, those once cute toddlers become the next generation of out of control, amoral adults or roosters.