Why Do Chickens Have No Breasts?

Why Do Chickens Have No Breasts?

By Devotha Charles Jahulula 

A long time ago, chickens, ducks, parrots, bats, eagles, hawks, and peacocks lived happily together in the forest. However, it was the hen who had breasts. She breastfed her children with breast milk. Other birds were jealous of her breasts. Her chicks were healthy. They grew up until the other birds began to think that the hen was a witch.


One day evening, Bat visited Hen at her home. Hen was cooking. "How are you," Bat greeted her. "I'm fine," Hen replied and welcomed her guest. Bat had a desire to find out why Hen's children are healthy. She complained to her that her children are hungry and weak! She asked Hen, "But your children are healthy. What do you give them?" Hen replied, "I give them milk from my breasts on my chest." Hen showed her breasts to Bat and tells her that her children suck her breasts and get the vitamins that help them to grow well. 

Then, Bat asked to borrow Hen's breasts for one week so that she can breastfeed her children and get the victims. Hen agreed and gave Bat her breasts. She told Bat that she should not forget to return them. She told her, "But make sure you have to bring them back without trouble, alright?". "Yes, I will, my friend," Bat agreed to keep her promise. 

Once Bat took the breasts and put them on her chest, she laughed and said, "Thank you! I am very happy to have breasts, my friend. Now, let me go." 

Bat started to breastfeed her children and they became healthier than before. 

After a week, Hen decided to visit her to get her breasts back. She found no one at her place. Bat's house itself had been destroyed and Bat had already moved to an unknown village. Hen began to cry.

Hen gave this curse to Bat: "From now on, you will be seen in darkness and you will cause diseases such as Ebola and Flu. You will be hiding every time and you will have wings like umbrellas. People will be laughing at you and you will have both bird and mammal features at the same time." That's why until today hens have no breasts, but bats have.


This story was composed by a Form III Student at Sibwesa Secondary School, 2022. The story is a myth about how chickens lost their breasts and how owls are the cursed birds (in most of African literature). 

Devotha likes arts subjects especially English Language and Literature. She also likes to play netball. One day, she wishes to achieve more in her academic life.


Sibwesa Secondary School,

P.O.Box 294,


+25622 009 566 

Other Students' Contributions: 

(1) HOW TO START A SCHOOL GAZETTE AND ITS ADVANTAGES - With Examples & Samples From a Working School Gazette

(2) I AM IN LOVE WITH SCIENCE (An Inspirational Poem for Students)

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Emmanuel Kachele

Emmanuel Kachele is a founder and Blogger of KACHELE ONLINE Blog, an educational blog where 'O' Level English - 'OLE', 'A' Level English (ALE) and other related teaching and life skills are shared extensively. This is an online center for all Tanzanian Secondary School English Language students and teachers (Forms I-VI) and all interested English Language learners and teachers worldwide.

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