Chickens are egg-laying passive mobs.
Chickens naturally generate on grass blocks with 2 blocks of free space above it at light level of 9 or more.
Adult chickens can be bred with seeds, beetroot seeds, melon seeds, or pumpkin seeds (and can also be bred with nether wart in the Legacy Console Edition), producing a baby chicken.
Thrown eggs have a 1⁄8 chance to spawn a baby chicken. If successful, there is a 1⁄32 chance to spawn four baby chickens instead. If the egg was thrown at a wall at a certain angle, the chicken may spawn in the wall, suffocating the chicken.
Baby chickens will not drop raw chicken, feathers, or experience when killed, unlike adult chickens.
Baby chickens will grow up in 20 minutes, although the growth can be accelerated by seeds; each use of seeds reduces the remaining time by 10%.
All baby zombie variants and baby zombie pigman have a 5% chance to spawn riding a chicken, forming a chicken jockey. Since a baby zombie only occurs from 5% of zombie spawns, this means that chicken jockey spawns makes up only 0.25% of all zombie spawns.
Adult chickens drop from 0 to 2 feathers, and 1 raw chicken. If a chicken dies while on fire, it drops cooked chicken instead of raw chicken.
The amount of raw chicken (or cooked chicken) dropped is affected by the Looting enchantment.
- Looting I : 1–2 raw chicken, 0–2 feathers
- Looting II : 1–3 raw chicken, 1–3 feathers
- Looting III : 1–4 raw chicken, 1–4 feathers
Chickens drop 1–3 experience when killed by a player or tamed wolf.
Like other baby animals, killing a baby chicken yields no items, nor experience.
Chickens are 0.7 blocks tall and 0.4 blocks wide.
Chickens appear to wander around aimlessly, and usually swim in water. When falling they will flap their wings quickly and fall slowly, making them immune to fall damage. Despite this, they will still avoid falling off high cliffs.
While in a loaded chunk, a chicken will lay one egg every 5 to 10 minutes (6000 to 12000 ticks), unless it is (or was) a part of a chicken jockey. If you are close enough to a chicken when it lays an egg, a popping sound can be heard.
They share some behaviors with other "farm animals":
- They are drawn to light when in a dark environment.
- When struck, they run around quickly and aimlessly.
- They can swim, visibly flapping their wings as they stay on the surface.
- They can be led around by holding a seed, and are also able to breed with seeds.
Chickens are attacked by wild ocelots.
Chicks do not lay eggs. Due to their small size, they can pass through openings even smaller than a full block, though not willingly. A chick's height is somewhere in between 0.51 to 0.80 blocks.
When swimming, chicks need only one block of air above their heads. Full-grown chickens need two blocks of air above their heads or else they will take damage when they float up and will eventually die.