I don’t think this applies to caged chickens, but my experience with caged birds is limited. All I can actually tell you is that free ranging chickens are some of the most cunning, cagy, calculating, communist creatures on the planet.
A free ranging hen can calculate to the second how long it takes my eyes to narrow, my jaw to clamp, pause listening, and spring out of my chair when I’m trying to do something on the comp and I hear a chicken on the porch.
A free ranging hen can judge almost to the inch how far and hard a person can throw a rock with any accuracy. A free ranging hen can predict almost exactly how far and how fast a 70 year old man can run swinging a stick before he gives out.
A free ranging hen is able to predict within a few seconds how long and how loud it can cackle and raise hell just outside the window before it needs to start dodging rocks or running into the bushes.
A free ranging chicken recognizes a slingshot and knows the difference between a slingshot stretched as an empty threat, and a slingshot with just about a bellyfull of chicken games.
A free ranging chicken usually won’t eat ants unless it thinks a person would rather it didn’t, in which case it will. The whole flock will stand on a red ant bed pecking, so long as the ants aren’t carrying off their feed to the ant bed.
A free ranging chicken will ignore hard cat food scattered around on the ground away from the porch, but it will sneak around trying to find some on the porch everytime it thinks a person’s in the middle of something needs concentration.
I subscribe to the philosophy the reason the chicken crossed the road was for practice. Training dodging cars. And motivated by some human being not wanting it to cross the road. Try to get a chicken to cross the road and it’s going to stay home cackling under the window or crapping on the porch.