The miracle sex changing bird

I was both amused and stunned at the news this morning of a hen spontaneously changing gender into a rooster in Calcutta, India. The owner claims the chicken had been laying eggs but for a few days ago, when it suddenly stopped and began displaying male characteristics. The University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Science wrote a report in 2000 about how such changes can sometimes occur in nature, albeit rarely.

What makes this story all the more funny is that the owner, one Haziruddin Mohammad, has refused to hand the bird over for study, claiming the change is a miracle. Well, anyone who owns a piece of a supposed miracle is not about to part with such a prize, especially in India, where a man can do quite well for himself in terms of finances and respect for owning such a unique animal. Still, you have to be somewhat unimpressed if this feat was somehow meant as a display of God’s ‘awesome’ powers; if he’s so omnipotent, couldn’t he make a mountain turn into a giant pencil or something equally outrageous? Instead, we get a rooster that used to be a hen. All that means is that the poor owner now has to look elsewhere for a good breakfast!

Comments (1)

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    Every 7th Day

    I’ve heard of this phenomenon several times. The linking thread is always this – humans are kinda’ dumb when it comes to the sex organs of animals. (What am I saying? Some humans are kinda’ dumb about all matters about sex.) Anyway, my point is, the story is usually the same: animal “changes” gender, people are amazed, someone who knows something about the biological variations of critters says, “Ahem, it didn’t change, the visible expression of the sex traits finally became clear.” I, for one, refuse to be impressed until the animal’s feather pattern shows the face of Hildegard von Bingen.

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