I think we’ve all heard the phrase “pecking order” at one time or another. Probably, when politics comes up or office hierarchy is described. Do you sometimes wonder where you are in the pecking order of your job—of your club—-of your school—etc, etc? I’m sure we all do once in a while. Did you ever wonder where the phrase ‘pecking order” comes from? Well—this is a blog by Chicken George—so the obvious answer is—–FROM CHICKENS!!
Chickens have their own way of maintaining social order—which has served their needs well enough over the last few centuries. It’s a bit authoritarian (or politically incorrect) by our standards —-but it’s the way chickens govern themselves. The pecking order is, literally, determined by pecking. Bigger, stronger, and more aggressive chickens bully their way to the top of their flock by pecking the other into submission with their pointy beaks. First, they strut about, fluff their feathers, and squawk, but if that doesn’t get the point across, they peck. It can get ugly.
So, you say—big bad bully!! But remember, the chicken at the top of the pecking order has a special role to play in the flock. Because, they are healthy and strong—it’s their responsibility to keep constant watch for predators and usher the others to safety when a circling hawk appears or a strange rustling is heard in the bushes nearby. And even though the top chicken has the right to eat first, he or she usually lets the others feed, while keeping a vigilant watch for enemies, and dines only after everyone else has had their fill.
So, if you are not where you want to be on your particular pecking ladder—change it————-but please don’t blame the chickens!!
Happy St Pats Day
George Saffarrans, CEO Rogers Poultry