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Hen mating another hen

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 

So....one of our hens higher on the pecking order is "mating" our lowest hen on the pecking order.  roll

I just started putting our 6-week-old chicks outside within view of their coop, and noticed this interesting behavior yesterday. 

We don't have any crowing yet, but this higher-up hen has been sort of growling at me (similar to a broody squak) when she sees me come out of the house.

I'm assuming this isn't completely rare, but is there anything that I can do to stop it?  The hen low on the pecking order is getting kind of beat up in general. 

We're putting in a larger run soon, and a few of the adults will be going to new homes to make room for the younger girls.  Maybe they're bored?  Overcrowded?  Just missing a rooster?

Any ideas?

post #2 of 10

It just sounds like a dominance issue to me. But someone else may have a better opinion for you.

Mother of 3 German Shepherds, 8 horses, 5 cats, 2 golden pheasants, 7 Red Golden Pheasants, 1 peacock, 2 peahens (2peafowl eggs), 12 ducks (plus 24 eggs), 6 geese, 150+ chickens, 14 Guineas and an incubator full 
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Mother of 3 German Shepherds, 8 horses, 5 cats, 2 golden pheasants, 7 Red Golden Pheasants, 1 peacock, 2 peahens (2peafowl eggs), 12 ducks (plus 24 eggs), 6 geese, 150+ chickens, 14 Guineas and an incubator full 
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post #3 of 10

How old are these hens?  And do you happen to have a picture of the dominant one ?

My flock consists of Araucanas, Crested Cream Legbars and Easter Eggers.  
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My flock consists of Araucanas, Crested Cream Legbars and Easter Eggers.  
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post #4 of 10
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by enola 

How old are these hens?  And do you happen to have a picture of the dominant one ?


The dominant one is about a year and a couple months old.  The "underling" is about 9 months old.

Here's a link to the dominant one's picture:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/jjjn/3416412180/in/set-72157617605192960/

Why?  Do you know a hen she might like?  lol


Edited by 3peeps - 5/15/09 at 7:07pm
post #5 of 10

It is a pretty common occurence particularily when you have no rooster.  Quite often one hen will assume the dominant role even to the point of crowing.

When having problems with chickens stop and think, what would Harlan do?
I've dealt with many thorns in my life and the flower is always worth the effort.

6 Nest rollout nest box plans  http://www.backyardchickens.com/t/287684/new-rollout-nest-design-picture-heavy-edited-1-21

Smoker plans http://www.backyardchickens.com/t/721017/opas-recirculating-smoker

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When having problems with chickens stop and think, what would Harlan do?
I've dealt with many thorns in my life and the flower is always worth the effort.

6 Nest rollout nest box plans  http://www.backyardchickens.com/t/287684/new-rollout-nest-design-picture-heavy-edited-1-21

Smoker plans http://www.backyardchickens.com/t/721017/opas-recirculating-smoker

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post #6 of 10

Would they start to grow spurs too?  I got some leghorns that were without a roo and one of the hens has spurs.

Blue and splash Silkies, Black copper Marans,  Seramas, and quail .
 

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Blue and splash Silkies, Black copper Marans,  Seramas, and quail .
 

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post #7 of 10

I am not sure there is a species that there is not some same sex mating activity displayed.  On the farm I have seen male on male and female to female action displyed in Horses, cattle, pigs, dogs, cats, ducks, geese, goats, sheep.  Look at a pen of cattle on feed and the riding of each other is a nuisance and in some cases drugs are fed to minimize.  Bulls will ride a less dominate bull to its death.

Castrated animals do it also.  It is an acitvity as common as the animals themselves, hardly worth note in my opinion.

post #8 of 10

It is a dominance issue.

Mother of 3 German Shepherds, 8 horses, 5 cats, 2 golden pheasants, 7 Red Golden Pheasants, 1 peacock, 2 peahens (2peafowl eggs), 12 ducks (plus 24 eggs), 6 geese, 150+ chickens, 14 Guineas and an incubator full 
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Mother of 3 German Shepherds, 8 horses, 5 cats, 2 golden pheasants, 7 Red Golden Pheasants, 1 peacock, 2 peahens (2peafowl eggs), 12 ducks (plus 24 eggs), 6 geese, 150+ chickens, 14 Guineas and an incubator full 
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post #9 of 10
Thread Starter 

Ok, that's kind of what I thought.  Thanks.

post #10 of 10

Just a quick thought from me.  I sometimes get hung up on semantics and gets me in trouble.  I would not describe it as an issue.  I would describe it as a behavior. 

Dominance issue seems to define it as something that needs to be addressed fixed or otherwise dealt with. 

Dominance behavior is just what they do. 

Behavior in animals and pets that affects our ability to relate to them or other wise enjoy them may be addressed for our safety and or comfort.  Other wise normal animal behavior is best left as is.

Example:  Country kids see a horse poop and take no note.  Kids that have no experience with farm animals see a horse poop or urinate and they ooh ahh and have a fit that a horse would have the bad manners to poop publicly. 

This is not a behavior we would likely modify LOL.

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