Egging the world on

A self-authenticated report from a Yealand Estate, a farm in New Zealand, indicate that playing classical music induces hens to lay larger eggs:


Wayne, our resident bird expert & mechanic at Yealands, has been measuring eggs taken from chooks from our vineyard block where we play classical music to the vines, as well as from our other vineyard blocks (not exposed to classical music). The eggs from our classical music block are 19% bigger than eggs taken from elsewhere in our vineyard.

The claim is further authenticated by on a local television station. TVNZ presents details:


This at first glance is not fully in harmony with a Spanish study that found particular classical music seemed to induce fear in hens:

Effects of specific noise and music stimuli on stress and fear levels of laying hens of several breeds,” J.L. Campo, M. G. Gil, and S. G. Davila, Applied Animal Behaviour Science, 91, no. 1 (2005): 75-84. The authors report:

“The treated group consisted of 54 hens (27 hens of each breed, in three replicates of nine hens) exposed to the specific sound stimulus of a 60 min tape with classical music (Mozart’s String Quartettes K 428 and K 458) between 9.00 and 14.00 for three days; the sound level was 75 dB maximum (ranging from 70 to 75 dB; background noises plus music)… a significant negative influence of noise (90 dB versus 65 dB) on the stressfulness and fearfulness of hens was reported, whereas the classical music (75 versus 65 dB) did not affect the level of stress of hens and had an increasing effect on their fearfulness.”

(Thanks to investigator Maria Eliseeva for bringing this to our attention.)

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