Chickens (sometimes referred to as "Ducks") are passive Mobs found in Minecraft. They have white feathers and wings, with a yellow beak and a red wattle. Chickens supply feathers, raw chicken, and chicken eggs, essential for arrows, food and cakes, respectively. Chickens are 0.875 blocks tall, 0.5 blocks wide and 0.8125 blocks long. Chickens spawn in broad daylight, and can spawn in groups of 2-6. A thrown egg has a 1 in 8 chance of hatching a chick, and a 1 in 256 chance of hatching 4 chicks at once.
Health Points: 4
Spawn: Grass blocks with a (minimum) 2x2x1 space above them or from a thrown chicken egg (1/8 chance).
Drops: When killed, chickens drop 0-2 Feathers and 0-1 raw chicken on death.
Chicken Egg (randomly every 5-10 minutes) while alive.
Chickens appear to wander around aimlessly, but actually have decent path-finding ability. They will make no attempt to stay away from hazards such as lava, but automatically seek out grass or light whenever possible.
When a chicken falls from a height, it quickly flaps its wings and falls slowly to the ground to prevent fall damage (leading to the belief it's a duck).
While an active chicken will lay an egg every 5-10 minutes (6000 to 12000 ticks), the egg will remain in the location it was dropped until the player picks it up.
In one experiment, it took 40 minutes for 9 chickens to lay 50 eggs (on average, 7.2 minutes/egg per chicken), and in another experiment 20 chickens lay 81 eggs in 30min (on average 7.4 minutes/egg per chicken).
Currently, breeding chickens and other passive mobs on the Xbox 360 version of minecraft is difficult to near impossible as all mobs despawn when the player moves out if range. It is still possible to farm chickens with the strategies below as long as the player doesn't move out of range. There is an expected update for the Xbox 360 version that will fix this problem in the future, but we do not currently have a time frame.
Chickens can be hatched by throwing chicken eggs, allowing them to be easily breed. Each egg has a 1/8th chance of hatching a chick and a 1/256th chance of hatching 4 chicks. This means that 5 stacks of eggs (80 total) will produce an average of 11 chicks.
Chicks move faster than adults and make different sounds. They take an average of 20 minutes to grow into adults. They do not lay eggs and will not drop resources if killed.
Adult chickens lay an egg every 7.5 minutes, so it takes an average of 55 minutes to produce a chick by collecting and throwing the eggs of a single chicken. Doing this continuously with a large number of chickens (several dozen) will double the population roughly every hour.
The player can farm chickens quite easily by making a safe, enclosed area with lighting to prevent hostile mobs from spawning. Making a chicken colony is a great way to get an unlimited supply of chicken eggs. Fully automatic egg farms are also possible, since live chickens drop eggs periodically. The usual method is to place the chickens in a pool of water held up by signs so that their eggs will fall through the water into a collection area. [note 1]
Tips & Tricks
- Breeding chickens using a Dispenser is any easy way to "throw" large quantities of eggs. However, the spawn rate is the same as manually throwing them.