Anticipation is higher than ever for America's Got Talent going into Season 12 tonight, and what sets the show apart will be on full display the very first night. Hopefuls are never confined by age, gender, or performance qualification in this TV talent offering that has always been “out-of-the-box.” Animals have always had a place in the panels' hearts for Heidi Klum, Mel B, Howie Mandel, and Simon Cowell, who even travels with his pooches. Birds, horses, cats and dogs have all stolen the show, and Olate Dogs wagged their tails to taking the ultimate title in Season 7 in 2012, with fabulous stunts and supreme devotion from their trainers.

In a sneak peek out today, a chicken takes to a piano keyboard and lets America know he has perfect peck!

Little red hen gets raves

“What’s she gonna do?” comes the question from Simon Cowell as the fowl is carried out on what looks to be her own homemade quilt. “She's going to play ‘American the Beautiful’” replies one of her caring handlers. Looks of disbelief immediately come across the faces of Heidi Klum and Simon Cowell. Heidi exclaims “No way!” and Simon shows off one of his famous eye-rolls. Within the first few notes, Howie Mandel is on his feet, hand over heart, and Mel B is stunned, along with the audience. Jaws drop and eyes widen as those watching can’t believe their ears. The talented feathered phenom from Japan, named Jokgu, could hear her notes and the applause, whether she understood what they meant or not.

Chickens do have ears.

Chickens actually hear very well, which might explain this contestant’s unexpected aptitude. Like many animals, the ears are located on both sides of the head, but unlike humans, they are flush to the head. There is no protective flap of skin near the opening, only a small tuft of feathers. Researchers have done studies in which food was placed near speakers with vocalizations from hens, and results showed that chicks who migrated to the speakers (the majority) maintained higher body weight and better development overall.

Even mother hens have their lullabies.

Drama doesn’t deter professional passion

The months preceding tonight’s premiere have been packed with rumors of tension that have been dismissed by most of the subjects. Heidi Klum and Tyra Banks have both refuted the notion of any feud between them, with a long-standing friendship that goes back more than a decade.

Simon Cowell recently shared the story of how Tyra took a unanimous vote to earn the job, when she showed up with no makeup and no pretense. The vote of confidence came almost instantaneously. She is not Nick Cannon, but she may bring a spark and humor all her own. America knows from her run as a modeling mentor and talk show host, and they know that she speaks her mind.

Mel B has been embroiled in nasty divorce proceedings involving her ex-husband, Stephen Belafonte. Her “off the chain” spirit has been unquenchable as an “America's Got Talent” judge. There are always “America's Got Talent” contenders who make viewers and fans thankful to have seen a moment they will remember forever. Only time will tell how many golden moments the little hen will give America.