Does comb/wattle development suggest maturity/egglaying readiness?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by bawkbawkbawk, Sep 15, 2009.

  1. bawkbawkbawk

    bawkbawkbawk Chillin' With My Peeps

    I know my four chickens are still a few months away from laying their first eggs, but I'm tempted to think the one who already has a prominent comb and a bit of a wattle is most likely to lay first. Am I correct?

    Of the four, the Buff Orpington seems the most "developed", with the Delaware somewhat behind her. The EE and Light Brahma don't seem to be developing any visible comb or wattle.

    Or is it all just cosmetics?
  2. fshinggrl

    fshinggrl Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 1, 2009
    the edge of insanity
    I had 3-4 SLW's who I swore were roosters because of their comb/wattle development. I think if you are sure they are hens, that there is a good chance that they will be the first hens to lay.
  3. pixie74943

    pixie74943 Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 25, 2009
    Adelaide, Australia
    It definately meant eggs for my girls. I remember looking out one day and being like 'woah, what happened to you face!!' and then soon after, I got eggs [​IMG]

    I could tell when Eve was getting close because a week or 2 before she laid her first egg her comb and wattles suddenly went really red and grew HEAPS.
  4. nwgirl

    nwgirl Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 27, 2009
    Everett, Washington
    It was about 3 weeks when one of our SLW's comb and wattle turned red before she started laying. Also, a week before she started laying, she was doing the squat thing when ever we'd pet her. Now the other SLW's comb is developing and turning red, so we know she's not far behind.
  5. Tala

    Tala Flock Mistress

    IMHO yes.
    2 of mine "suddenly" got red red combs about a week or so before they started laying
    the other 2 didn't get the color/comb development yet and they don't lay any egges yet

    It was like you said, kinda overnight "wow what happened to you?" kind of thing.

    If your chickens are MONTHS away from laying.....then you're probably looking at a roo. They get combs and wattles early.
    Last edited: Sep 15, 2009
  6. bawkbawkbawk

    bawkbawkbawk Chillin' With My Peeps

    ohmygosh, no, she can't be a roo! no no no no no! she's very quiet. Not a roo, right? My girls are 15 weeks old - that's not near laying time, is it?

    Here is a picture of her:


    And here's one from a week or two ago:


    She CAN'T be a roo, right?
  7. Tala

    Tala Flock Mistress

    Those are some awful shiny neck feathers, but by 16 weeks my guys were crowing and had huge huge combs, so unless she's crowing I don't think you should worry much.
    Do you have a side view pic?
  8. bawkbawkbawk

    bawkbawkbawk Chillin' With My Peeps

    I've put them to bed for the night so I don't want to go in and bother them with the camera - is this enough of a "side view"?


    I would fall over in a faint if she turned out to be a roo. For starters, I can't have a roo, so she/he would have to go bye bye, and not anyplace fun... [​IMG]
  9. Chickens in Elmwood

    Chickens in Elmwood Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 6, 2009
    Elmwood, WV
    That is a lovely pullet you have. [​IMG]

    By 15 weeks, my BO roo had a HUGE red comb and wattles, was attempting to mount the girls, and had little nubs growing where the spurs would be. That is a girl, IMHO.

    When my BO pullets got ready to lay, their combs went sort of crazy with the spikes going all in different directions, kinda like they got stuck in a wind storm. [​IMG]
  10. cposz

    cposz Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 5, 2009
    Twin Cities, MN
    She looks exactly like my BO girls looked at 15 weeks - and at about 18 weeks their combs and wattles got suddenly very red, as described here. At 21 weeks (last weekend) we got our first egg from one of them - the other one hasn't laid yet.

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