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Posted by on Dec 30, 2015 in TellMeWhy |

How Do Chickens Chew Their Food?

How Do Chickens Chew Their Food?

Chickens, like all other birds, have an unusual way of chewing their food. The work of chewing is done by the gizzard, the part of the bird’s stomach where the food is ground up.

Since birds have no teeth, they must swallow their food whole. After food is swallowed, it passes into a space called a “crop” in the chicken’s gullet, or throat.

There the food is stored and softened. The food then passes into the gizzard, where it is crushed by the grinding action of the tough gizzard lining, often with the aid of gravel and grit that the chicken has swallowed.

The gizzard is why chickens do not need teeth. It is a muscular part of the stomach which grinds grains and fiber into smaller, more digestible, particles. From the gizzard, food passes into the small intestine, where nutrients are absorbed.

Content for this question contributed by Eric Nehrlich, resident of Cincinnati, Hamilton County, Ohio, USA