Animals In Print
The On-Line Newsletter
From 10 July 2001 Issue:
MUST WATCH TV
"The Natural History of the Chicken"
On Wednesday night, July 11, "The Natural History of the Chicken" will air on PBS. The TV times has highlighted it as a "Watchable," printing a quarter page photo of a gorgeous rooster on page 5 of the magazine. Animal advocates who have seen the documentary have told me it is terrific. Animal friend Howard Rosenberg has given it a terrific write-up in the Los Angeles Times.
The PBS web page on the show tells us:
"Most people best know the chicken from their dinner plates - whether as thigh, wing or drumstick. Consumers barely pause a moment to consider the bird's many virtues. In THE NATURAL HISTORY OF THE CHICKEN, airing on PBS Wednesday, July 11, 2001, 9:00 p.m. ET (check local listings), filmmaker Mark Lewis (Cane Toads: An Unnatural History and Rat) expands the frontiers of popular awareness and delightfully reveals that this small, common and seemingly simple animal is as complex and grand as any of nature's creatures.
Received with critical acclaim at the 2001 Sundance Film Festival, the film focuses on ordinary people telling stories about their extraordinary chickens - and some are truly the stuff of legend"
Four vignettes are then summarized. You can read them for yourself at
A Natural History of the Chicken
Or why read them? Watch them on Wednesday night!
The PBS page ends on this astoundingly animal friendly note:
"Unfortunately, the average chicken lives only seven weeks before being transported to a processing plant. More than eight billion chickens will be sacrificed this year for America's desire for cheap, versatile meals.
With its humorous and touching accounts, and enlightening facts, THE NATURAL HISTORY OF THE CHICKEN invites viewers to rethink their relationship with a creature long taken for granted, while at the same time providing a lens by which viewers look at themselves. It is a "natural history" for an animal like no other."
The show is set to air at 9pm Eastern time but 8pm in Los Angeles. On the above page you will find a link where you can check your local television schedule for air times.
PBS takes comments at:
Feedback to PBS
Or, if your browser does not support forms, you may prefer to send email directly to [email protected]
Feedback matters! Please thank PBS for airing this documentary.
You will find Howard Rosenberg's review of the show, complete with adorable photo of Rosenberg and rescued laying hen Bettina, at: http://www.calendarlive.com/top/1,1419,L-LATimes-TV-X!ArticleDetail-37886,00.html
Due to its length, the above line may not work in your browser as a link. Cut and paste the whole address and you will get to the right page. Or go to the www.latimes.com website and click on TV in left hand column.
Here's a link for AOLers: <A HREF="http://www.calendarlive.com/top/1,1419,L-LATimes-TV-X!ArticleDetail-3788 6,00.html">Celebrating the Chicken With a Grain of Irony</A>
Howard has incorporated into his review information about Bettina, and has focused on the miserable plight of laying hens in general, a subject touched on in "The Natural History of the Chicken." The show and his review open up a lovely window of opportunity for a letter to the Los Angeles Times about the plight of chickens.
The Los Angeles Times takes letters at:
Yours and the animals',
(DawnWatch is an animal rights media watch that looks at animal issues in the media and facilitates one click responses to the relevant media outlets. To subscribe to DawnWatch, email [email protected] and tell me you'd like to receive alerts. If at any time you find DawnWatch is not for you, just let me know via email and I'll take you off the subscriber list immediately. If you forward or reprint DawnWatch alerts, please include this tag line.)
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