Chicken Terms: G-O...So You Know What You're Talking About - Treats for Chickens

healthy hen wellness healthy chicken grass

Hi Treats for Chickens' community, it's me, Dawn!


Look no further for your "Chicken Encyclopedia". Treats for Chickens has made this easy-to-view and understand list of the most commonly used chicken terms. With fun pictures to go along! Terms listed are G-O.

Gizzard: An organ in the digestive system of a chicken that grinds food with grit swallowed by the chicken.

Chicken Gizzard

Photo Credit: Happy Chicken Coop


Grit: Sand and pebbles eaten by chickens to help grind food in its gizzard. You see, chickens don't have teeth, and as a result need help digesting their food which is what grit does - it helps grind up food in the chicken's gizzard.

Birds allowed to free range don't need to be offered grit -- they find their own ideal sizes and types to suit themselves. And chickens in an enclosed run with dirt/sand also don't need grit as they will eat some naturally, especially if you spread some of their feed/treats on the ground.

chicken grit
Photo Credit: Murano Chicken Farm


Hen:  A female chicken that is a year or more old. Not a baby and not a teenager.

Chicken hen Buff Orpington

Photo Credit: Happy Chicken Coop


Hock: The joint in the chicken's leg between the thigh and the shank.

chicken hock

Photo Credit: Livestocking


Keel: The breast bone of the chicken.

Chicken keel bone

Photo Credit:


Litter: Biodegradable material such as pine shavings used on the floor and in nesting boxes to absorb moisture and keep housing clean. Straw and rice hulls can also be efficient.

chicken coop litter

Photo Credit: The Frugal Chicken


Mash: Finely ground chicken feed - often used with baby chicks because it's easier for them to eat and digest.

chicken mash


Mite: A type of external crawling parasite that feeds on the blood of your chickens. Can you say "tiny vampire"?! They are very tiny, smaller than a flea so they are hard to see.

But the symptoms of mites include anemia, scabs on their legs, and feather picking. And since mites feed at night, one or more of chickens may even act like they don't want to go into their coop at night.

Do you now feel all itchy just thinking about it? Yeah, me too.  Prevention is the best medicine, so click here for our all natural way to prevent these little boogers with a handy dispenser: Diatomaceous Earth.

chicken mite

Photo Credit: EntnemDept


Molt: The annual normal dropping out and regrowing of a chicken's feathers. Your birds may look rather unsightly during this time, and the chicken run & coop can resemble the aftermath of a big pillow fight!

Lasts approximately 6-8 weeks. Don't worry, we sell Molt Mender, which should have your chickens looking fine and feathered again. It's our original recipe and bundle, but now in a pre-mixed bag just for you! Just mix, mash, and feed! (Remember, feed only when your chickens are molting. It contains more protein than necessary when they are fully feathered.)

chicken molt hen molting losing feathers

Photo Credit: Backyard Chickens


Nesting Box The private area where chickens lay their eggs. One thing to remember, no matter how many nesting boxes you have, even if you have enough for one per hen, they will inevitably pick a "favorite" box that they fight over. It's just one of those quirky chicken things that you can't prevent or fix. Don't be surprised if you see two hens in the same box, lol.

Tip - mites and lice like to live in nesting boxes, so you can use Nesting Box Blend to keep your chickens calm and free of these ickies in the nesting box.

21 DIY Nesting Box Plans and Ideas You Can Build in One Day

Photo Credit: Morning Chores


Oviduct The tube through which an egg travels over the course of its formation until it is laid, at which time your chicken will sing her mighty "egg song" letting anyone who will listen know that she is "woman hear me roar".

Chicken Anatomy 101: Everything You Need To Know

Photo Credit: Happy Chicken Coop


Chicken terms, Part III is coming up.


- Dawn, Treats for Chickens 🧡


treats for chickens
Can we kelp you? For more information about domestic fowls, visit Treats for Chickens blog, cluck HERE.
Hungry for more feathered friend wellness? Of course you do, because your flock deserves eggs (cellent) treat (ment). For fabulous and healthy chickens, Treats for Chickens recommends naturally grit: Oyster Shell.
treats for chickens natural grit oyster shell
~ Shop Treats | Shop Problem Solvers | Shop Subscribe + Save ~
Share your flock experience with Treats for Chickens on Instagram + Facebook with #treatsforchickens #petsofinstagram #chickensareawesome #oystershell #abchicken


Let's keep your flock happy + healthy!


Got something to cluck about? Have other suggestions? Questions?
Help fellow chicken parents and leave a comment below!

Older post Newer post

Leave a comment

Please note, comments must be approved before they are published

Treats for Chickens is