How early can hens tell a roo is a roo?


In the Brooder
May 25, 2017
North Carolina
My Coop
My Coop
I have 6 older hens, and Henrietta is the top of the flock, I have 3 sets of chicks, the youngest being 2 roosters. The roos are about 8-9 weeks old and are still smaller than everyone else, but do have a pronounced comb and wattle.. About a 2 weeks ago we put them outside with the rest of the flock. Henrietta started being broody about 3 days later. She used to be the first one out for treats and last one in at night, but was always calm even if I pulled her out of her roosting tree on colder nights and put her in the coop. She is now being meaner to our cochin (Cami) who is normally the sitter. She will peck Cami or me and try to get the eggs back, or even throw a fit and try to run Cami out of the coop. All the other ladies let the roosters eat and play in peace, but she will go out of her way to chase them down and shoo them away from any food. She wasn't like this with the other 2 sets of chicks. Wondering if this would have anything to do with her knowing they're about to take her place at the top of the pecking order, or just going broody without anything to do with the roosters.. or what else may be going on. Thanks for any help with my first post on here!


Sep 25, 2015
I know when I introduced my chicks when my hens were broody,it upset them,their so grumpy.But no,she is the least of worried about them stealing her place in the order,she is just showing dominance,the roos are far to young still,not even they are thinking about testing them.
She likely knows their roos by now though.

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