When do chickens change from chirping to proper clucking.

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Bobble, Oct 23, 2013.

  1. Bobble

    Bobble New Egg

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    Sep 30, 2013
    I rescued two Barnvelders about 6 weeks ago, I estimated their age to be about 8 weeks (although I was told they were 10 weeks).

    Anyway I have been wondering, never having raised such young birds before, when do they stop making the chirping sound and start to cluck like adult chickens?

    I have had them (Milly & Molly) six weeks so I estimate that they are now 14 weeks old.

    They are in a separate pen alongside my Copper Black Marans and some hybrids in their own pen, the young Barnvelders go head to head with the two other dominant hens and they don't back down, in fact it is the dominant hens who back away, it maybe be because they are safe in their pen. So funny to watch though.
     
  2. centrarchid

    centrarchid Chicken Obsessed

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    Mine start changing voice between 12 and sixteen weeks. It is a continuous process. I would not say the new sounds are clucking, rather contact calls.
     
  3. Bobble

    Bobble New Egg

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    Sep 30, 2013
    Thanks that is what I thought, sure it must be different by breed.

    Even when they chirp, I can still recognise the difference in the sounds, when I throw scratch for the the other hens they make excitement calls, when the cats go near their pen they make threat sounds.

    Keeps me amused anyway.
     
  4. centrarchid

    centrarchid Chicken Obsessed

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    When you get the chance, listen to sounds produced by birds of different ages when they are close together. You will find very quickly they produce many sounds that actually have meaning. Sounds of similar meaning sound similar although pitch can vary greatly. You will also not a time during when rapid voice change occurs like with some male humans.


    Listen for sounds that indicate good food, nasty, get away, move or I will kick your butt, don't hurt me, and many others. Sounds do not form sentences but still a great deal of communication is involved.
     
  5. 3chickchicks

    3chickchicks Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I had some change at about 12 weeks. One waited until 21 weeks to change. Mine seemed to peep with each other and then would make lower sounds if they were frightened. Then gradually a lower sound would slip in between peeps until one day not a peep was heard.
    Once their voices changed, it seemed they had many more noises including a noise intended to offend me when I've done something they didn't like. It's a low "Grrrr" accompanied with a stink eye. Lol!
     
  6. centrarchid

    centrarchid Chicken Obsessed

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    "Grrr" usually means do not touch me or get out of my space. It can change in tone to mean don't hurt me. Chicks makes a similar much higher pitched version, especially when they are not used to being handled.
     
  7. Bobble

    Bobble New Egg

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    Sep 30, 2013
    Thanks for the advice have picked up sounds and meanings from older hens, strange how it varies from how young the chicks/pullets were when re homed. My hybrids were about 20 weeks when I got them so were already in a group and a pecking order had been established that didn't include me. My Marans were only 12 weeks so were more affected by me and are more accepting of me as part of their group so I guess the sounds they make when I am around are more frienly as they feel safer.
     
  8. Bobble

    Bobble New Egg

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    Sep 30, 2013
    Tonight when checking all the girls were safely in their coops, the Barnvelders made a sound I hadn't heard before a throaty sort of sound, not unlike a cats purr (I did check to make sure our cats weren't in or anywhere near) but in shorter more stacatto trills, maybe they are about to sound more like chickens. Will update tomorrow.
     
  9. centrarchid

    centrarchid Chicken Obsessed

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    You should be able to discern submissive versus aggressive close range calls. One drops in pitch while other rises in pitch. I will try make recordings of examples tonight for posting on youtube.
     

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