is this common?

Greg88

Chirping
Sep 1, 2015
155
16
81
N.W. Arkansas
We have 4 BO hens and one suspected RSL hen. (need to take pics to post to confirm)

A couple of the BO hens (fairly frequently, couple times a week) and the RSL (once) do something that I consider a bit odd and cool.

We have tried to handle them quite a bit to keep them tame since we brought them home as day old chicks.

They will either:
1) Run up to you and "squat" down next to you, allowing you to pick them up and pet them without fuss.
2) When you walk up to them and they are next to the fence or some other place where they are "somewhat cornered" they may "squat" down and let you pick up and pet w/o fuss.

Most times they all will come up and eat treats from your hand but will avoid being picked up or petted.
I know BO's are friendly, but the "squatting" part has me perplexed...
 

donrae

Hopelessly Addicted
Premium Feather Member
9 Years
Jun 18, 2010
31,453
4,069
581
Southern Oregon
It's a submissive behavior and a sign of sexual maturity. Hens who have a rooster don't usually squat for humans. In a hen only flock, they tend to see the human as the dominant. You reaching down from above triggers the same response as a rooster attempting to mate, and they squat.

If they're not laying yet, it means eggs will be coming soon, as they're sexually receptive
smile.png
 

Greg88

Chirping
Sep 1, 2015
155
16
81
N.W. Arkansas
Thanks ALL!!
they have been laying for a couple months now.
Thinking back, it started about the time they started laying
little embarrassed I didn't know this!!
 

junebuggena

Crowing
Apr 17, 2015
23,102
8,207
491
Long Beach, WA
From the looks of the birds in your profile pic, it looks like you have 3 Buff Orpingtons, 1 Production Red (too dark to be buff), and 1 gold sexlink (white in the tail feathers).
 

donrae

Hopelessly Addicted
Premium Feather Member
9 Years
Jun 18, 2010
31,453
4,069
581
Southern Oregon
Oh honey don't be embarrassed. Who on earth would have thought to research if a hen would think a human was a rooster? It's kind of a weird thing they do, and pretty much limited to chickens as far as I know.
 

Harborotter

Songster
5 Years
Dec 4, 2014
348
55
121
Washington State
I just started a thread about this yesterday as one of my pullets is doing the exact same thing. I figured that was what she was doing but I was concerned that she was more interested in my husband than the two roosters that we have provided our ladies.
lau.gif
 

junebuggena

Crowing
Apr 17, 2015
23,102
8,207
491
Long Beach, WA
My girls prefer me to the rooster or the cockerel. It makes them so angry and frustrated. Everytime I go out, the girls come running to see if I have anything for them, then the rooster starts trying desperately to find something to draw their interest back to him. Poor boy hasn't figured out yet that dried leaves and twigs can't compete with scratch.
 

EggyTheHen

Songster
Oct 1, 2015
58
141
127
We have 4 BO hens and one suspected RSL hen. (need to take pics to post to confirm)

A couple of the BO hens (fairly frequently, couple times a week) and the RSL (once) do something that I consider a bit odd and cool.

We have tried to handle them quite a bit to keep them tame since we brought them home as day old chicks.

They will either:
1) Run up to you and "squat" down next to you, allowing you to pick them up and pet them without fuss.
2) When you walk up to them and they are next to the fence or some other place where they are "somewhat cornered" they may "squat" down and let you pick up and pet w/o fuss.

Most times they all will come up and eat treats from your hand but will avoid being picked up or petted.
I know BO's are friendly, but the "squatting" part has me perplexed...

I'm not sure if it's common but...
My hens do it, and I love that they let me!
big_smile.png
 

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