Head Hen behaviors?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by maclady, Jun 23, 2011.

  1. maclady

    maclady Songster

    Jan 28, 2011
    Lost in Space
    I'm a chicken newbie so please bear with me in case I'm just being crazy. I have 4 BO's, 18wks old, and just about every night the head hen is chasing one of the others around before bedtime (always same girl). I think it is to get her to go into the coop. Once she gives up the running and goes in everyone settles down pretty quickly. Is this normal head hen behavior? My girls usually go into the coop between 8:30-8:45 each night and she is the last one on the roost. I also have one chicken who I think may be challenging for head hen sometimes cause there will be a racket and then next thing you know the chase is on until she gives it up and jumps onto a low outdoor roost. I have looked in the 2 books I have but still not sure if I need to worry about the chasing. No feather loss or pecking that I have seen so far. They are well fed and live in a 4x4 elevated coop inside a 10x10x6 chicken kennel with shade cover. Any info anyone could give me would be appreciated. Thank you in advance. [​IMG]

  2. Dawn419

    Dawn419 Lost in the Woods

    Apr 16, 2007
    Evening Shade, AR
    Hi maclady!

    You didn't mention anything about a rooster in your post so I'm guessing that you don't have one.

    If that is the case, then your alpha/head hen can be taking the place of a rooster as my alpha roo will run around just before dark making sure all his gals are up in the coop. Our second in command roo stays near the door and makes sure than any of the girls that #1 gets chased inside, stays inside.

    I wouldn't worry too much about the other hen challenging your head hen. Our 12 girls are constantly bickering for position in the pecking order. It can get loud sometimes but they usually quiet down pretty quick. Our 2 roosters are smart, they just stay out of the girls' way and mind their own business.

    Hope this is some help!

  3. CowgirlPenny

    CowgirlPenny Songster

    Feb 17, 2011
    South East TN
    Yep, your head lady has assumed the role of a rooster. Every night my rooster is the last one in after he chases all the others in. If the hens see us out, and run back out he gets SO angry and comes out after them. I wouldn't worry about the bickering. It happens.

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