Cockadoodle-dooo! Birds use their beaks for many reasons, but communication is one of them! Check out these different calls from common poultry! https://www.inpoultry.com/poultry-for-kids
Let’s learn more about the structure and function of beaks!
Read aloud: The Chick and the Duckling by Mirra Ginsburg
Birds don’t have hands or forks to eat with, they only have their beaks (and feet). Chicken beaks are adapted for pecking their food. Let’s test some of our tools at home and see how they resemble bird beaks!
Find an object/tool at home that mimic a chicken’s beak (tweezers). Use this tool to pick up foods like what chickens eat (like crunched cereal or corn meal). Now, time yourself and see how many pieces of food you can pick up in 1 minute. Will the tweezers work trying to pick up other, larger items or items of different shapes? Using the tweezers, try and see how many of other items you can pick up in 1 minute.
Extension: Many family farms also raise ducks! Are there any tools at home that mimic a duck’s beak?
Design and create your own beak using materials at home that will pick up, or “eat,” a specific food you have in your refrigerator or cabinets!
Chickens are important for us for meat and eggs, but other there are many other species of birds in Illinois! From bug control to pollination, birds native to Illinois play a huge role for our ecosystem. Check out some of our IL native birds:
Website of IL native wetland birds https://animals.mom.me/birds-native-illinois-wetlands-5104.html
Your activity is to observe the native birds in your area and design and build a bird feeder using recycled materials! The birds in your area have different beak shapes and sizes. What type of bird food/seed would you put in your feeder that would attract IL native birds?
Something for Everyone
Communication and food are the highlight of this heartwarming duo!