Normal comb color in a pullet?


8 Years
May 30, 2016
Hi! What is a normal color for the comb of 12 week old pullets? I have different breeds and some look more yellow, some more pink but all are quite pale, some paler than others. Is that normal? In particular I have two barred rocks and one has a more yellow coloring, the other more of a pale pink. Thanks!
Pullet combs stay quite pale until they start maturing sexually, when their combs will turn a bright red, to indicate to the rooster that they are near ready to start breeding (producing eggs).
I've always had terrible luck getting accidental cockerels with my pullet orders. So I am always breathless each day when I examine combs for that reddening that indicates I have a future roo. But always the reddening occurs before the eight week mark. If combs remain muted, no matter if yellowish or pale pink, I figure I'm home free. Also, wattles, on breeds that have them, will begin to be apparent on the boys around six weeks.

I did give myself a scare a few weeks ago when my present four were between seven and eight weeks old. Each of my four EEs had a different hue on their tiny combs. A couple were more deeply pink, one a very pale pink, and one had a blackish nub for a comb. But none have reached the unmistakable red that would indicate a cockerel.

Another surefire way to tell if you have a cockerel is to part the saddle feathers and look at what color pin feathers are emerging. This is only a good test with chicks from a breed where roosters are multicolored. You should see bright, contrasting colored pin feathers on backs of cockerels as they approach seven or eight weeks.
Haha! Yes, the question wether some of them are roosters in waiting is always in the background, for me too, but I was actually more concerned about their health with this question. So I take it it is normal for them to have quite pale combs until they start laying? And the fact that one of the barred rocks has a pale pink comb and the other a muted yellow comb doesn't mean one of them is not well?
The colors are of normal chickens. Now, should you suddenly observe one of them with a bluish-grey comb, then you have a chicken who is probably un-well, probably with respiratory problems. Or, suddenly seeing a bright, cherry-red comb would indicate fever or a chicken that is dangerously over-heated.

It's wise of you to be concerned about comb color since it absolutely does denote the level of health of your chicken.

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