Chicken community ‘coop-eration’ needed to test UC poultry health app

Jan 26, 2024

Chicken community ‘coop-eration’ needed to test UC poultry health app

Jan 26, 2024

En español

If you raise backyard chickens or breed game fowl, UC Cooperative Extension has an app for you. The new mobile app offers information for raising healthy chickens.

To test the usefulness of the UC Community Chicken app to people raising chickens, the Poultry Lab at the UC Davis School of Veterinary Medicine will pay poultry owners to participate in a two-week study with a follow-up survey three months later. 

“Our study focuses on the development and evaluation of a new mobile app for backyard chicken owners and game fowl breeders,” said Maurice Pitesky, UC Davis School of Veterinary Medicine associate professor of Cooperative Extension. “The goal is to examine the app's effectiveness as a communication tool within the poultry community.”

To be eligible, participants must be backyard chicken owners who are 13 years or older or game fowl breeders over 18 years of age. They will need to have Apple or Android phones or tablets to access the app.

What's in the app? 

The UC Community Chicken app contains six educational modules with short videos that cover health assessment, nutrition, vaccination, biosecurity, bird behavior and husbandry. It also features chat and feedback buttons so participants can communicate with the UC experts and other poultry owners.

 “We value the thoughts and experiences of people who are raising poultry,” said Myrna Cadena, Ph.D. student in Pitesky's lab. “Their input will be valuable in shaping the way we extend information about poultry health.”

Study timeline

For two weeks, participants will explore the educational resources and other features and complete the surveys. Three months later, the researchers will follow up with a survey to assess the chicken owners' progress.

Participants who complete the entire study and follow-up survey will receive a $25 Amazon gift card via email. Those who do not finish the entire study will be compensated based on their level of participation. The study will be limited to 220 participants.

To register for the study, go to Once the study is ready, participants will be notified via email. The UC Community Chicken app will be available to the public after the study is complete. For more information about the study, contact Maurice Pitesky at

By Pamela S Kan-Rice
Author - Assistant Director, News and Information Outreach