What is a Pullet Chicken? Definition, Eggs, Characteristics

In this article you will know all about pullet chicken. Also you will understand how old is a pullet, its definition, eggs, characteristics of pullets and selecting guide for raising.


A young hen, commonly under one-year-old, is called as a pullet. In the starting stage pullets have non-shiny and less feathers. However male chicks under the age of one year are called cockerel.

They are young chickens and start laying eggs after 8 to 12 weeks. Some, people also sell them for meat after they become 1-1.5 lbs.

If you are willing to raise chickens in your backyard coop then you have to maintain good lighting, feeding, and nesting boxes, enabling them to grow into good laying hens.

Chicken raisers who want to grow fast buy good variety of pullets to avoid brooding and early chicks mortality.

Definition for Pullet Chicken

A Grey Pullet Chicken
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The word pullets simply defined as a young hen, especially: a domestic chicken hen 1 year or less then a year old.

So, when baby chicks start foraging them self and their mother left them is the stage when you can call them started pullets.

Some people say that the best time to call chickens as pullet is when they start laying eggs. So, some time it is up to you when you start calling them but above one year of age they are called hens.

Basic Guide on Selecting a Good Pullet

Select chicks that have already been marked as pullets for the development of eggs.

If you want viable eggs to hatch, you may not need males; they eat food and take up lots of space that you might use much more effectively for hens.

Fresh chicks that are already raised can grow good pullets under sound feeding as well as management practices.

While beginning or maintaining a chicken coop, it is necessary to buy the right sort of chick. If you want to collect lots of eggs, select the best industrial chickens like White Leghorn, Rhode Island Red, Sussex chicken.

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Several more commercial brown egg-laying breeds are accessible, which lay approximately along with White Leghorns and therefore are adequate for the hatcher of specific-flock.

Try raising a few other healthy pullets of dual-purpose breed so that you will get profit in all the way.

You can purchase 17-week-old fully prepared-to-lay pullets too. A few weeks since you purchase them, they may start developing eggs.

As started pullets chicken can be infected with various viral diseases so you need to make sure they are vaccinated as well as screened.

You will have to separate those new birds from the old flock still you vaccinate them and they make some immunity.

Started Pullets, Egg Laying Age, and Pullet Chickens

Let’s clearly explain a few terminologies before we get begin:

  • Started pullets – a 15-22-week-old hen.
  • Lay chicken stage-a 22 weeks old hen.
  • Pullet- a hen who is younger than a year.
A broody pullet chicken
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The lay point has been the average time where the eggs may begin to be produced by your hens. However, hens aren’t robotic, so the lay point become an approximation only!

Rhode Island Reds start laying about 18-20 weeks, Orpingtons can stay up to 28 weeks to start laying.. A few other varieties lay faster than the others. You may have a sense of how effective it is possible that your bird will be an advanced form.

Rhode Island Red like chickens gives your flocks a strong, durable siblings. Also their are so many factors which affect growth of pullets is feed, living environment, stress, and number of roosters you need.

Be careful that, for several weeks, the hen will not provide an egg for you. The pressure of a new home and community will slow things a little bit, so be careful!

Also remember pullets are newly foraging so their is a risk of predator attack to them. Using a good quality chicken wire is recommended when your most of the flocks are under one year of age.

Pullets of age is the most profitable and good egg laying periods for chickens. The young age chickens are very naughty and have different type of characteristic according to their breed.

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Characteristics and Physical Appearance of Pullets

A buff pullet
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There are some common physical characteristics of a pullet:

  1. Comb- The comb of a pullet is bright red as well as complete, not rusty, worn, or patchy.
  2. Beak / nostrils- The beak must be balanced well, not twisted or deviated. There must be no sentimental discharge. Also, the color vary from light grey to bright yellow.
  3. Feathers- Glossy,’ tight,’ nice sheen, no torn feathers or bald spots would be in the pullets. Check through most of the feathers- you’re searching for lice or mites or feather-affixed eggs.
  4. Eyes- Curious, bright, no disfigured pupils with no eye flushing.
  5. Legs- Young birds do have stronger colored legs, not fading legs that make them feel reasonably flat, without elevated scales. Besides, the older birds may have their joints swollen.
  6. Vent- This is meant to be new, pink, shiny, and light. The vent would be light pink/white/grey on an older hen, as well as potentially dry.
  7. Conduct- Older hens seem to be more docile, quite volatile, and smarter in all respects. But pullets are very active, and fear to come near peoples.

Using Pullets Eggs

  • The eggs your pullets lay would be smaller than that of a mature hen.
  • Such small eggs go for other uses in industrial processing (like powdered eggs).
  • Because the market wants relatively widespread large eggs you need to wait when your pullets become hen and start laying large size eggs.
  • You can eat them at home.
  • Several other chefs pick out pullet eggs as they have further yolk as well as they find they are rich in taste.
  • In frying them, be cautious as they cook faster than larger eggs.


Before purchasing pullets, it really helps if you do your research. Study about pullets as well as their treatment criteria as much as you can.

Its gonna help if you were confident about what you want in a breed and then search around for respectable breeders.

If you’re not sure of buying pullet, ask your friends who are already in that business. They will tell you which chicken breed is best for you and your area.

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Then you can find few good pullets and cockerel to start farming. Hope this guide helped you to understand all about pullet chicken.

How many pullets do you have? Share your experience below.

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I am Bijaya Kumar and I have been raising chickens for the last 10 years. Backyard poultry farming has been our family business for the last 30 years. We raise multiple chicken breeds in their backyard.

2 thoughts on “What is a Pullet Chicken? Definition, Eggs, Characteristics”

  1. i have aprox 40 chickens hens are about to start laying soon , i got my chicks june the 3rd and they weigh close to 10 lbs dressed very nice birds , i need imfo , how to tell a laying hen from a meat bird

    • Thanks for writing here charles. Are you asking how to recognize the male female or the laying age of the breed? Can you please tell me the chicken breed name?


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