"The boy has a chicken."
Translation:Gutten har en kylling.
I have an English friend. She talks about her chicken, even meaning her old birds, the ones she has for the eggs. I find that strange. In Norway you can buy kylling, these are young birds, or you can buy høne, this will always be an older bird. Kylling and høne are two different things. So I agree that kylling ought to be chicken, even though some people call both young and old chicken in their own language.
Duolingo offers høne as a translation of chicken. I am guessing it means the same as hen in English, should it be accepted as a valid answer for this sentence?
I do not think so, that would be like allowing someone to translate "human" to "woman". According to the guidelines we should only do that when there is no equivalent word in the other language.
In that case should høne not be offered as a translation for chicken, but retained for hen or?
Presently the hover over for chicken gives the option of høne as a translation. Wiktionary gives the translation as being a hen - http://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/høne .
Further investigation shows that in Danish it can be used to indicate chicken meat (kylling kjøtt to be precise) but there is no mention of this in the bokmal section. If there was some cross over from the Danish to the Norwegian development this might explain how it got there.
On an amusing note, apparently the word is derived from proto-indo-european *kana which means to sing; the english hen would have once been a male chicken.
Found it an removed it.
There are some related words in Norwegian "hane" which means "rooster" and "høns" which is used a plural noun used about both, like "cattle" about cows and oxen in English.