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Meet Amber - the show jumping chicken

By Paul Nizinskyj, Wombwell Reporter Thursday 19th July 2012
It's a clucking miracle Play Video
Images (5)
Pd28471 Leap: Amber hops over a jump. 1 of 5 Pd28471 Reward: Amber earns a treat. 2 of 5 Pd28471 Talented chicken: Amber tackles the slalom poles. 3 of 5 Pd28471 'Mad idea': Nicola Hughes with Amber. 4 of 5 Pd28471 Talented chicken: Amber tackles the slalom poles. 5 of 5

It's a clucking miracle - a Darfield girl has trained a chicken to show jump.

 

Nicola Hughes, 16, of Barnsley Road, trained her hen Amber to weave between and jump over poles in her back garden.

 

She had the poles set up to train dogs but said she decided to train one of her five hens to prove a point.

 

She said: "I've been training dogs for a couple of years and lots of people say their dog just can't be trained. But any dog can be trained so I thought I'd train a chicken to show them - because if you can train a chicken you can train anything."

 

Nicola uses positive reinforcement to lure Amber over and between the poles, using pieces of fairy cake, which Amber enthusiastically gobbles up after performing her trick.

 

The former Darfield Foulstone pupil also has a rabbit and a dog at home. She said her friends think she is 'absolutely mad' but added she enjoys playing with the hens and trains Amber once a week to keep her focused because chickens 'have very short attention spans'.

 

Sadly none of the other hens seem to have shown a flair for the tricks. "Maybe they don't like cake," Nicola said.

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