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Photos: 20-year-old hen hatched in 2002 named oldest chicken alive, photos go viral



  • A 20-year-old hen named Peanut has been verified by the Guinness World Records as the world’s oldest living chicken
  • Peanut is said to have survived death during hatching when her mother walked out of the nest and left her inside an unhatched egg
  • The owner was headed to throw away the egg when she heard it cheep, so she peeled it by hand and out came the little chick

The Guinness World Records has verified a hen named Peanut, from Michigan, USA, as the world’s oldest living chicken.

Peanut is said to have lived for over two decades despite escaping death by a whisker when she was abandoned by her mother.

According to the Guinness World Records, the hen was born in 2002, which makes her 20 years 304 days old as of 1 March 2023.

She is a bantam; Belgian d’Uccle/Nankin mix, raised from the day she was hatched by Marsi Darwin, a retired librarian.

“Peanut is a doddering old lady now but she has had quite a life,” owner Marsi said.

The chicken’s age was also verified by her vet, Dr Julia Parker, who first came across her in 2003 as a fully-grown adult hen.

Marsi disclosed that before hatching, Peanut was abandoned by her mother when she left the nest with all her other chicks.

When the woman discovered the cold egg, she picked it up to throw it away only for her to hear it cheep.

“I think Peanut had a strong survival instinct to ‘call’ to me,” Marsi said.

Despite being peeled out of her shell, Peanut’s mother refused to accept her as part of her brood, leaving Marsi to take care of her.

For the first two years of her life, Peanut lived inside a parrot cage in the owner’s dining room before being allowed to join the rest of the brood.

Marsi also revealed that Peanut laid eggs until she was eight years old, which is a year or two longer than an average layer.

She hatched several nests of eggs and brought forth hordes of grandchildren and great-grandchildren during her lifetime but has now become too old to breed.

“I’m sure she has outlived quite a few of her children,” Marsi said.

On average, the lifespan of a chicken is around 5-10 years, which means that Peanut has lived twice as long.

So far, the oldest chicken ever was a Red Quill Muffed American Game from the US called Muffy, who lived from 1989 to 2012, clocking an impressive 23 years and 152 days.

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