Crowing is one of the chickens’ traits, along with perching it roosting. Mostly, you will see roosters are the ones who do the crowing, and they crow a lot, everyday, at random moments, especially at dawn.
Roosters’ crow can get pretty loud too, to the point of annoying people, and some suburban areas even ban rooster completely. But, do all chickens crow? Can hens crow too?
Can hens crow?
Technically, hens can crow. But there are some differences between rooster crows and hen crows. First is hens don’t crow as much as a rooster. And second is that hen’s crows aren’t as loud as rooster’s.
Why do hens crow?
First of all, as mentioned, hen crows are not common and chicken owners will not likely see their hens crow. However, they do crow, and here are some reasons why hens crow:
They try to be the previous rooster in their rock
If you used to have a rooster but not in the present anymore, a hen may sometimes try to take that rooster’s place and crow. People still don’t know why the hens would do this, but some possibilities are hierarchy or pecking order.
They are the top hens in the flock
If you have a flock of chickens, that flock will likely have a pecking order, in which dominant chickens will stay on the top. And if the lower-tier chickens try to take over, it could lead to violence in the form of pecking each other.
With that being said, the top hens will display some masculine traits, like crowing.
The hens imitate the roosters they see
This is simply your hens are trying to crow like the roosters they see. This immediately opens up a way to hopefully stop the hens from crowing, just make the rooster stop crowing.
Sex reversal is a phenomenon that happens in hens. It involves the hens’ left ovary that has produced all their estrogen is damaged or failed.
When the estrogen is no longer produced, and the estrogen level decreases, the hens start to transform physically and act, behave more and more like a rooster.
Moreover, the hens will stop laying eggs. So if you see your chickens so laying eggs, it could be the sign of the sex reversal process.
How loud do hens crow?
Hens’ noise isn’t that loud. They are definitely less body than many indoor pets like dogs or cats. While different breeds will have different levels of nosiness, most won’t bother humans.
The loudest hen’s crow is about 60 to 70bB, roughly similar to a normal conversation of humans. They are less body compared to a dog bark, which can reach somewhere around 90dB
On the other hand, roosters’ crows are very loud. The 90dB figure above is also how loud a rooster crow can get. The rooster crow can be so loud that it can annoy people, and many suburban areas ban rooster all together.
How to stop your hens from crowing?
It is very frustrating that you tried removing the rooster to remove the noise source, only to realize that one of the hens replicate what the rooster does.
But, you can improvise in trying to do your hens from crowing, try using the methods that stop roosters from crowing, and here are some of the methods:
Remove the source that may make your hens crow
Chickens may crow at night when there is a strong light source since light exposure is one of the possible reasons that make chickens crow. So try to remove the light source.
Some certain sounds can also make your hens crow, so try to keep the environment inside the coop quiet.
Use a no-crow collar
You may think putting a no-crow collar on one of your hens is cruel for them physically and morally. But that isn’t usually the case.
If you want to, you could use this method as a last resort just because of how well it works. The noise the hens make is now muffled and quieter. The collar is used on roosters so that they don’t make loud noises to the point of breaking the laws in some suburban areas.
Related: Why do roosters crow at night?
Some questions relating to hens crowing
Can a hen turn into a rooster?
A hen can’t turn into a rooster, but it may start to act and behave like one of the estrogen amounts in said hen decreases and the testosterone amount builds up.
Do hens mount other hens?
Yes, a hen can mount another hen, but don’t think too much about it. The behavior is social, not sexual.
If your touch has a rooster, then it will be the dominant chickens almost all of the time. When ready for mating, the hen will crouch to the ground and spread the wings for balancing, then the rooster climbs on and starts mating.
The crouching pose also shows the submission of the hen. When the flock has no rooster, the hen crouches to the ground and instead, the dominant hen in the pecking order. And the purpose is to assert dominance only, not to mate with the lower hen.
So, can hens crow? Technically, hens can crow. But there are a few reasons for the difference of rooster crows and hen crows:
- Hens generally don’t crow as often as roosters.
- Hens’ crows sitting around 60 to 70dB are not as loud as roosters’ crow sitting around 90dB.
In general, hens crow because they are trying to imitate many actions and behaviors of a rooster when the rooster is no longer in the flock, or when the hens see the rooster.
Also, the sex reveseral process could also make the hens crow when the testosterone amount in the hen starts to build up and the estrogen decreases.