Hen with Spurs, big comb, and waddles?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Pancakestheworm, Nov 19, 2017.

  1. Pancakestheworm

    Pancakestheworm In the Brooder

    11
    23
    34
    Nov 19, 2017
    I have a hen in my flock who, at first, just looked like any other ordinary hen. About a year or two in she started growing spurs. I researched to see if her growing spurs was normal, and it's certainly more rare but it didn't seem to impact anything. However on closer inspection, her comb is marginally larger than the others, and her waddles have grown a lot. She doesn't have large tail feathers, and her waddles aren't quite the size of a rooster... yet. Since then her spurs have gotten so huge that they stooped growing sideways and started curling up. She has not started exhibiting rooster behaviors however. She doesn't crow, or try to mount the other hens. I'm not sure if she still lays eggs or not. But I'm curious if this transition means her ovary is damaged or not. She is perfectly healthy and is even the dominant chicken in the group, but i just want to make sure she won't have any permanent health problems from this.
     
  2. Abriana

    Abriana Mocha Frappuccino

    3,767
    21,982
    837
    Apr 26, 2017
    Fools Gold or Swan Pond
    Do you have a rooster? Some Hens, if there isn’t a rooster, will actually turn into rooster. Buying a rooster is usually the best solution, unless you don’t mind having a hen that’s a rooster. She probably will stop laying or at least slow down, it varies from hen to hen but she may start mounting and crowing later. You may want to trim those spurs too. There are tutorials online. Good luck!
     
  3. sylviethecochin

    sylviethecochin Crowing

    3,197
    5,887
    491
    Jun 14, 2017
    Central PA
    Agree with @Abriana, with the provision that she won't actually turn into a rooster, just act like one.

    Weirdly, I believe that sex change can happen in sea bass.
     
  4. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler!

    49,157
    28,185
    1,102
    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop
    She should be fine.....unless those spurs grow up to where she 'sits' on them and they cut her skin.

    X2
     
    Brahma Chicken5000 likes this.
  5. sourland

    sourland Broody Magician

    76,025
    59,038
    1,457
    May 3, 2009
    New Jersey
    :welcome A friend had a RIR hen who in her second or third molt developed secondary rooster feathering, developed spurs and started crowing. In effect she was 'not' a rooster, but probably because of an ovarian tumor her body thought that she was.
     
  6. Abriana

    Abriana Mocha Frappuccino

    3,767
    21,982
    837
    Apr 26, 2017
    Fools Gold or Swan Pond
    It would be best to cut them, and save the trouble later of injuries.
     
    Brahma Chicken5000 likes this.
  7. azygous

    azygous Free Ranging

    13,778
    9,684
    662
    Dec 11, 2009
    Colorado Rockies
    I have a five-year old Welsummer hen with spurs, over an inch long. She's had them since she was a year old. I trim them with a Dremmel tool so they don't get too long and cause trouble.

    I also have a Cuckoo Marans hen with one spur. I find that even odder than the hen with a full set.
     
  8. diamondsilkies

    diamondsilkies Songster

    336
    500
    131
    Oct 23, 2017
    Southern Arizona
    It's also a lot more likely that the dominant hen will take charge and start exhibiting signs of being a rooster, if you don't have one. In one of my first flocks, my rooster passed away and one of my Black Star hens took charge and starting growing spurs/larger waddles.
     
    Brahma Chicken5000 likes this.
  9. sourland

    sourland Broody Magician

    76,025
    59,038
    1,457
    May 3, 2009
    New Jersey
    Ducks waddle, chickens have wattles.
     
  10. Pancakestheworm

    Pancakestheworm In the Brooder

    11
    23
    34
    Nov 19, 2017
    Thanks so much everyone! I do not have a rooster. I figured I didn't need one since hens lay eggs with or without a rooster. Plus I didn't want to deal with the possibility that some of the eggs might hatch! ( I'm happy with my little flock of 7 at the moment ) I will definitely look into trying to trim her spurs back, since at this point they are probably over 2 inches long and look bothersome for her to walk with. Thanks so much for the info everyone!
     
    venymae, aart and Brahma Chicken5000 like this.

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by: