Which hen is the dominate one?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by WA23, Sep 14, 2008.

  1. WA23

    WA23 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    So if you don't have a rooster, how can you tell where the chickens are in the pecking order? Which one is on top? I only have six so I thought it would be easy to tell, but I am not so sure. I have been watching closely, and I think I have it narrowed down to two, but am not sure.

    Not that it really matters. Just a curiosity question.
     
  2. redoak

    redoak Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I really only notice the dominate behavior when I put really good treats all in the same place and don't spread them out. When this happens one hen will peck at another once or do a mock peck and the less dominate hen moves away. I think my smallest hen is my alpha hen, and she was one of the last to lay.
     
  3. tvtaber

    tvtaber Chillin' With My Peeps

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    The one that seems the most responsible for the others, not just the most aggressive or bullying. It can be very subtle. I noticed our white leghorns (can't tell them apart, there are two) are in charge when they started herding the others to safety after a loud noise. Since then I've seen them "correcting" the others for overstepping their bounds with treats, etc.
     
  4. Wynette

    Wynette Moderator Staff Member

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    It took me quite a long time to realize who was the dominant hen. Ends up, she's the one that always comes to me first - she's not afraid at all, the others are more tentative. But, I put a new pullet in with the adult hens a few months ago, and it was CLEAR who was dominant, then! Dominant one chased newcomer around, pecked her HARD a few times, and continued to let her know her place in the pecking order. The others could have cared less.
     
  5. Marlinchaser

    Marlinchaser Chillin' With My Peeps

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    My guess would be the one on top. [​IMG]
     

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