Is my chicken a hermaphrodite??

Discussion in 'New Member Introductions' started by heartsandwings, Dec 26, 2016.

  1. heartsandwings

    heartsandwings Out Of The Brooder

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    Dec 26, 2016
    Australia
    I have a frizzle houdan hen that I bought around two years ago, she layed eggs as usual and acted like a normal hen. But about a year ago her egg laying became inconsistent and now she hardly lays at all. But she makes strange, loud screeching noises has large tail feathers and yesterday I saw her mount exactly like a rooster, one of her fellow frizzles. I have opened eggs that i forgot to collect for a day or i found broody hens sitting on that have had little brown balls attached to the yolk and I wonder if my chicken is hermaphrodite? I have had all my chickens go broody, even one of my ISA browns who stayed broody for 2 months and in the end i had to buy her chicks to raise to get her put of it. Is my chicken a hermaphrodite?!
     
  2. Teila

    Teila Bambrook Bantams Premium Member

    G’Day neighbour [​IMG] Welcome!

    I also have a hen who is 4 years old and has stopped laying and taken on a couple of rooster characteristics. However, she is not actually turning into a rooster and this could be caused by drops in oestrogen levels which causes testosterone to rise. Hens have been known to grow a larger comb, longer wattles, rooster feathers and crow but I do not think that the transformation goes as far as being able to fertilise eggs.

    The mounting could just be a dominant hen thing or if her testosterone is increasing, an attempt to mate but I doubt it would be successful. The brown balls you are seeing in the eggs are probably just meat spots or blood spots. Fertile eggs will have a bulls eye:

    [​IMG]

    Hens prone to broodiness will go broody without a rooster in the flock. Here in Aus it is currently the season to be broody; I have just finished breaking two broodies.

    I hope you enjoy BYC. There are lots of friendly and very helpful folks here so not only is it overflowing with useful information it is also a great place to make friends and have some fun. Unlike non chicken loving friends, family and colleagues, BYC’ers never tire of stories or pictures that feature our feathered and non feathered friends [​IMG]
     
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  3. junebuggena

    junebuggena Chicken Obsessed

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    I'll just start by saying it is not possible for a hen to transform into a male. Sometimes, the functioning ovary can become damaged due to illness of cancer, and the results can produce a hen that begins to take on some male characteristics. She will, however, remain genetically female, incapable of fertilizing eggs.
    Crowing and mounting are behaviors that are actually quite normal for an older, dominant hen to exhibit.
    Roosters have no effect on broodiness.
     
  4. heartsandwings

    heartsandwings Out Of The Brooder

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    Dec 26, 2016
    Australia
    They can be hermaphrodites though, so one side can be ZZ and one ZW, but hopefully she is just a normal hen :) [​IMG]
    She is the black and white one
     
  5. redsoxs

    redsoxs Chicken Obsessed

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    Greetings and [​IMG]! Great to have you aboard! I have no knowledge on the question you ask so I'll leave it to the experts. Best wishes and thanks for joining BYC!
     
  6. heartsandwings

    heartsandwings Out Of The Brooder

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    Dec 26, 2016
    Australia
    Haha thanks :)
     
  7. junebuggena

    junebuggena Chicken Obsessed

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    Hermaphrodites do exist, but it is highly unlikely that your bird is one. Birds just don't randomly become a hermaphrodite. They are born that way. And they are usually sterile. Considering the fact that your bird has laid eggs, and still has female saddle feathers, I'm pretty sure you just have an older, dominant hen.
     
  8. drumstick diva

    drumstick diva Still crazy after all these years. Premium Member

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    Out to pasture
    agree with junebuggena
     
  9. N F C

    N F C dem crazy bones Premium Member

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    [​IMG]
     

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