First there is one head, then there are two heads. There is safety in numbers. Three heads are better than one. With two other chickens paying attention, it’s safe to preen and take your eye off your surroundings. If a hawk or eagle or farmer with a butcher knife appears, someone will sound the alarm so everyone can escape.
Fences make good places to take a break. Nothing can sneak up from behind, and it’s easy to spot danger from afar. Take a look at their heads. Each one is pointed in a different direction. Coupled with a chicken’s remarkable ability to see nearly all around them, very little happens without them seeing it. Which explains why chickens have so much to gossip about.
Humans often begin salacious conversations with, “Did you see … ?” Among chickens, it goes without saying that they saw it already, so their gossip must start with, “What do you think of that, Hazel?”