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Our hens used to run like the wind when you would chase them or try to grab them.

The flock is currently around 8 months old and now they all just sit down when startled. They make no attempt to run, just go into a sitting position and hunker down.

Very curious reflex. Is that just a domesticated response or do wild chickens do that as well?
 

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Some of my layer hens do the same thing. They also do it when the rooster approaches them. I am not sure if they are submitting to me the way they do the rooster, but it would make sense. They see me as a part of the flock and as the top of the pecking order. They don't, however submit to my dog this way. They chase him off. LOL
 

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Flocker
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It is submission. If they do it when they are scared, they are just giving up. You need a big mean nasty in there to guard them!!
 

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A Round American Woman
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My daughter was quite young when our first flock started doing this. It was so funny one day when she carried a hen into the kitchen and said "Mommy! They like me!! I just walked up and she stopped so I could pick her up!"

I didn't have the heart to try to explain to her what the hen was "expecting", she was just a tad too young.
 

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It is funny when they start doing it. They at one time run like crazy and then they just drop. We were driving one day and went by a wild turkey hen and she squatted.
 
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