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National Poultry Day – March 19th, 2018

We don’t want to cry fowl, but did you know that Monday, March 19th, 2018 is National Poultry Day?!

By poultry, we are referring to domestic birds that are raised for meat and eggs. This includes birds such as chicken, turkey, duck, goose, ostrich, quail, pheasant, guinea fowl, and peafowl.

Here are some compreHENsive facts regarding our feathered friends:

Backyard chicken Photo Credit: Prudence Caskey

  • Domestication of the chicken dates to at least 2000 B.C.
  • The United States has the largest broiler chicken industry in the world.
  • Poultry can be cooked by roasting, baking, frying, grilling, sautéing, or steaming, and chicken and turkey are lower in fats and cholesterol than other meats.
  • 50 billion eggs are produced each year in the United States.
  • 8 billion chickens are consumed each year in the United States.
  • 45 million turkeys are consumed over the Thanksgiving holiday in the United States.
  • There is no nutritional difference between a white and a brown chicken, and no, brown eggs do not have to come from a brown chicken!
Here are some suggestions on how to celebrate this holiday:

4-H Embryology Project Photo Credit: Marcus Boston

  1. Try cooking from a new recipe that highlights eggs, chicken, or turkey.
  2. If you don’t have your own flock of backyard chickens, take your family to a local farm that that allows kids to interact with their animals.
  3. If you have a flock, give your birds a delicious treat of meal worms, strawberries, or bananas without the peel.
  4. If you are a school teacher, this would be a great time to start getting involved with the 4-H Embryology Project. This school enrichment project teaches young people in school’s basic science and life skills by incubating fertile chicken eggs through the hatching process.
  5. For youth, get involved in a livestock project by showing poultry at your local fair, or learn and compete in a 4-H/FFA poultry judging competition.
If you are interested in learning more about raising your own small flock or want to get involved with a poultry project, please contact your local county extension agent, or look through the following articles for more information

Getting Started in the 4-H Embryology Project: Tips for 4-H Agents and Teachers

Introduction to Pasture-Raised Poultry: Getting Started

Sprouting Grains for Chickens

Avoid rookie mistakes when cooking the holiday turkey