From the Archives: Ella Zanow admonishes a chicken


Ella Zanow enjoyed raising chickens, but not when one of her 75 chicks poked her left eye.

A short story in the March 13, 1936, Los Angeles Times began, “Never trust a baby chick, not even the most downy and guileless. They’re all vicious at heart and will do you in the eye, given half a chance.”

Zanow explained to The Times what happened: “The Leghorns and Barred Rocks were picking on one poor little mite. They had him in a corner, bleeding, and I leaned over to pick him up. I did notice this one was watching me pretty sharp.”


“Suddenly he made for my left eye and gave me a good, hard peck. Can you imagine that, after all the care I’ve taken of the chicks?”

Zanow was treated at a hospital and suffered “no lasting damage.” But she learned a lesson: Wear heavy eyeglasses when dealing with her chicks.

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