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My friends and I can't decide; are the egg-laying birds in Minecraft chickens or ducks?

Chicken? Or duck?

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My first reaction is "What?" My second is, is this really one of the "practical ... questions based on actual problems that you face"? –  Matthew Read Sep 8 '11 at 16:35
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How is this not a valid question? It relates to "Game mechanics and terminology". It is practical in the sense that knowing game terminology is helpful for discussing it, if not necessarily playing it in this case. It also has a concrete answer. Reopen? –  Ben Blank Sep 8 '11 at 16:49
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@Ben Blank - because it is not so much a question as a rhetorical memetic question, recently driven to popularity by Notch himself. I'm more inclined to re-close it as "not-constructive". –  Raven Dreamer Sep 8 '11 at 16:54
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@Raven Dreamer — I would disagree. I've seen discussions on the forum debating this very question and it's evidently significant enough a confusion to warrant mention on the wiki page. Both many months before Notch's recent post. This question seems to me largely equivalent to Does Herobrine exist?. –  Ben Blank Sep 8 '11 at 17:07
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I wouldn't mind reopening it if it was phrased like a normal question, but I'm agreeing with Raven as it is now. –  Ullallulloo Sep 8 '11 at 19:33
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closed as not a real question by Raven Dreamer Nov 1 '11 at 23:44

It's difficult to tell what is being asked here. This question is ambiguous, vague, incomplete, overly broad, or rhetorical and cannot be reasonably answered in its current form. For help clarifying this question so that it can be reopened, visit the help center.If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

3 Answers

up vote 12 down vote accepted

They are chickens. This can be verified in the source code, where the sounds they make are all identified as mob.chicken and the skin texture is chicken.png. Additionally, you can see their wattles in-game, which ducks do not have.

It has been mentioned that, in a recent blog post, Notch himself expressed some confusion over their species. As he is the one who created them, however, this is likely an in-joke for the community — he has a history of such humor, like the patch note for removing Herobrine.

Update: Notch tweeted today that "the chicken is now a duck". It's unclear whether this is a change in direction… or more trolling.

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+1 especially for explaining the contribution of our favourite Swedish troll to the confusion. –  SevenSidedDie Sep 11 '11 at 13:24
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As pictured in the question, creature has a red piece of body unterneath beak. It's quite similar in placement and color to an organ named the wattle which distinguishes Chickens (Gallus Gallus Domesticus) from Ducks (Anatidae).

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I think that they are chickens because in the minecraft wiki, it says that they are chicken.

Minecraft Wiki Mobs Picture

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