No, No, say it ain't so! Is My Louise a Louie?


In the Brooder
9 Years
May 7, 2010
Boise, ID
Hi, I'm a first time chicken mother and have 2 hens (or so I thought...) One - Louise - is a Rhode Island White and the other - Thelma - a brown leghorn. I've tried to look in the forums but can't find anything about RIW's. I think from looking at photos that I may have a boy? Heard a very strange sound coming out of the coop this morning and my dog went crazy in the house. Sounds like an animal crying, nothing like a rooster crow. Both are about 12 weeks old. What do you think? If a roo, any suggestions of rehoming him other than craigslist? Any suggestions of replacing him for Thelma. She goes crazy whenever they are not joined at the hip. Thanks much!!!


I'm honestly leaning more toward hen. Rhode Island Whites get really big combs, whther or not it's a rooster. Seems to me she'd have a bigger comb by now if she was a he.

And as for th strange noise you heard, it could be just a little fight. My hens make bizarre noises when they get angry at one another.
At 12 weeks you should be able to see the pointy saddle & hackle feathers growing in if it were a rooster. But they may be difficult to detect on an all white bird. Part the feathers at the back of the neck and at the base of the tail and look for thin pointy feathers beginning to grow.

Let's see more pictures of this bird, side views of the whole bird and close-ups on its tail.

This is why I tell folks to always have a Plan B for any unwanted roosters no matter where they buy their chicks. There is always a chance this could happen and you want to know what you'll do before you need to. Are you not allowed to keep roosters where you are? Maybe you can post an ad at your feed store, or ask local BYCers if they'd like to have him.

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Thats a Boy. If it is 12 weeks old, there is abdolutely no chance it's a girl with that comb. My Rhode Islands dont get combs that big until they are laying. Sorry
I couldn't see any pin feathers, but then again, not sure what' I'm looking for. Here is a closeup of his/her head and a side view. Couldn't get a close up of tail, do you need side view or from straight behind? Thanks so much for the help, you all are awesome!



My other question is: can RIW hens have large combs and some not? I ask only cuz it seems obvious he's a roo from the couple of pics I found online. I don't know if having a comb is a variable with this breed? Thanks again!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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