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In Australia and New Zealand (also sometimes in Britain), there is a generic term chook The species as a whole was then called domestic fowl, or just fowl.

This use of "chicken" survives in the phrase "Hen and Chickens", sometimes used as a British public house or theatre name, and to name groups of one large and many small rocks or islands in the sea (see for example Hen and Chicken Islands).

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Roosters can usually be differentiated from hens by their striking plumage of long flowing tails and shiny, pointed feathers on their necks (hackles) and backs (saddle), which are typically of brighter, bolder colours than those of females of the same breed.

However, in some breeds, such as the Sebright chicken, the rooster has only slightly pointed neck feathers, the same colour as the hen's.

The identification can be made by looking at the comb, or eventually from the development of spurs on the male's legs (in a few breeds and in certain hybrids, the male and female chicks may be differentiated by colour).

For the broader species of which chickens form a subspecies, see Red junglefowl.

For other uses, see Chicken (disambiguation), Chooks (disambiguation), or Red junglefowl.

The chicken (Gallus gallus domesticus) is a type of domesticated fowl, a subspecies of the red junglefowl.It is one of the most common and widespread domestic animals, with a population of more than 19 billion as of 2011.and South Asia, but with the clade found in the Americas, Europe, the Middle East and Africa originating in the Indian subcontinent.From India, the domesticated chicken was imported to Lydia in western Asia Minor, and to Greece by the fifth century BC.Fowl had been known in Egypt since the mid-15th century BC, with the "bird that gives birth every day" having come to Egypt from the land between Syria and Shinar, Babylonia, according to the annals of Thutmose III.In the UK and Ireland adult male chickens over the age of one year are primarily known as cocks, whereas in America, Australia and Canada they are more commonly called roosters. although in the egg-laying industry, a pullet becomes a hen when she begins to lay eggs at 16 to 20 weeks of age.

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