Do your chickens have names?
The first of my chickens that I ever named were the original six Cornish cross meat birds we raised. As a farm kid, I’ve always known where food comes from and it didn’t bother me that we would eventually eat these chickens. So we named them Marsala, Extra Crispy, Pot Pie, and so on with the littlest one known as Popcorn Chicken.
Admittedly a little twisted, but when I first got chickens, I guess I didn’t really think of them as animals with such big personalities. We had chickens growing up on the farm, but I never really interacted with them much. That also could have been because we had a mean Polish rooster who delighted in chasing us if we got too near.
Fast forward a few decades and now I have a flock of over 50 chickens – with more than a few interesting names. My daughter pretty much named our White Plymouth Rocks – our first chickens – but since then, the name game has taken on a life of its own.
Not all the chickens have names, but the ones that do have names inspired by something about them. It could be their look, their personality, a certain way they behave, or even from something that happened to them as a chick.
Here’s a glimpse at some of the names in our flock, past and present.
The Boring Names for Chickens
This seems to happen more with the roosters, but sometimes a chicken just gets stuck with a boring name. My Barred Rock rooster had the very unoriginal name of Stripes. My Rhode Island Red rooster’s name was even less inspired – Red. My broody Buff Orpington is Mama.
The Group Names
Sometimes, when I acquire a group of chickens, they end up sharing a collective name. When we added a few dozen Isa Browns to our flock, we called them The Littles. Two years ago, I added three Silver Laced Wyandotte pullets that used to run in circles when we tried to catch them. We still call them The Dodos. That same year, I also added three Barred Rocks that were always together, just like the Three Stooges. I only have one left today, and on her own I call her Stoogie.
The Funny Names for Chickens
Nugget is the very first chick we ever hatched here. She hatched two chicks of her own – Fuzzball and Chucklehead. My Buff Orpington rooster Blue Butt got his name as a chick when some blue antiseptic coating on a small wound turned his entire back end blue for weeks. Stanky Butt – Stanky for short – also got her name as a chick when she was constipated and needed an enema daily for about a week. Not Carl is, not surprisingly, Carl’s sister. Buttercup got her name as a chick because every time I looked at her, I said, “What’s up buttercup?”
The Weird Names for Chickens
I have a chicken named Foofy McFluffyface. One look at her and it’s pretty obvious why. I have a Black Australorp named Psycho. We also had a rooster named Arby because my daughter said his tail looked like curly fries. I still call one poor hen Poopy Baby because as a friendly little chick, she pooped on me.
The Bird Names
For some reason, I have a bunch of chickens named after birds. There’s my pretty little Dove. I also have a ChickenHawk and a Vulture.
The Disney Names
We love all things Disney in this house, so it’s no surprise that there have been many Disney names in my flock. Belle, Thumper, Flower, Sneezy, Hopper, Squirt, and even a black hen named Vader because she hatched on May 4, also known as Star Wars Day. We had a brave little hen named Merida and her sister, Elinor. Last summer, I added two light Brahmas named Evangeline and Rey.
Ok, a bunch of our chickens have names, but on top of that? They also have nicknames. Nugget usually becomes Nuggie. I call Elinor either Ellie Ellie or Miss Ellie. My daughter’s bantam rooster Oreo will answer to RoRo. We shorten Ivory to Ivy and her late sister Ebony to Ebbie. I often call Penny, my most special hen, Nootsie. Coqui is the preferred nickname for Cocoa Puff.
What are the names of some of your chickens? I’d love to hear about them!
Traci DeLore grew up around chickens on her family’s farm, but didn’t start keeping her own chickens until she was in her 40s. Her desire to keep chickens came from a desire to have her own fresh eggs from chickens she knew were well cared for and happy. Traci started with six chickens – and then chicken math took over. These days, she has about 60 chickens — and three “rotten” ducks. (I say this because having ducks is like living with toddlers.) Traci also raises and processes her own meat chickens on occasion. Follow her on Instagram.