Chicken keepers learn to tolerate a certain noise level coming from their backyard.
However, most of us aren’t going out of our way to look for noisy roosters and loud birds.
We have to think not only of ourselves but our neighbors when we choose the kinds of chickens we want to add to our coops.
Sussex are relatively quiet chickens and not noisy. They chatter throughout the day but are not loud about it and are neither the noisiest nor the quietest in the chicken coop. Like most egg layers, Sussex hens tend to sing the egg song and only make really loud noises when alerting the rest of the flock to danger.
If you’re raising birdies in an urban area or need especially quiet chickens, there’s more you need to know about Sussex chickens.
Keep reading to learn about why they make the sounds they do, how their noise level compares with other breeds of chicken, and what to do if your birds are too noisy.
What Sounds Do Sussex Chickens Make?
Sussex chickens are dependable layers and generally have a very calm temperament.
This means they’re good for keeping the flock peaceful but also sing the egg song semi-frequently.
If you aren’t familiar with the egg song, it’s simply what chicken keepers call the throaty noises hens make when laying an egg.
Here’s an example:
Many fantastic layers do this, including Rhode Island Reds, Plymouth Rocks, and other backyard flock favorites.
The cool thing about having a backyard flock is you hear many of your chickens join in and sing the song together sometimes!
This might sound concerning to you if you have close neighbors or need your yard quiet for another reason.
But it takes a lot of chickens for the song to cause real noise pollution and become a problem.
Sussex chickens and other egg layers don’t tend to speak loudly or crow and call out.
They won’t be using their full lung capacity to get your attention in the middle of the night.
If you have a rooster, you are more likely to hear crowing early in the morning than if you only have hens.
This is very common behavior from many chicken breeds, though.
Adding Sussex birds won’t exacerbate early morning noisemaking if you have a mixed flock.
Why Are Your Sussex Hens Being So Noisy?
It’s frustrating when our quiet hens or those with calm temperaments seem to do a 180 on us and change their behavior.
But if your Sussex birds are making a racket, there is likely a good reason.
Let’s take a look at some common reasons our fluffy birds get loud:
- Singing the egg song
- Predators or other danger
- Morning song
When it comes to the egg song, there isn’t anything for you to do to quiet the noise down.
This is completely natural.
Many chicken farmers celebrate this and enjoy listening to it.
If this bothers you, reframe your mindset and think about what the sound means.
A Sussex birdy who’s singing to you is laying for you!
If your entire flock (or a good portion of it) is making loud noises, especially yelping noises, a predator may be nearby.
Your birds often notice aerial predators and ground predators before you know they’re there.
It’s always a good idea to do a sweep of the area near the coop when the noise level gets too high.
Going out and checking on your friends might scare predators away.
But you might also catch them fighting each other.
This is another way birds get loud.
Avoid fighting by raising birds with friendly personalities, separating roosters when possible and necessary, and providing adequate food, water, and other resources in the summer and winter.
Further Reading: Sussex chicken aggression and causes
The morning song is another instinct.
If this is becoming a huge issue for you, cover up your coop windows until you and your neighbors are up for the day.
Remember that your chickens need a certain amount of light daily.
While Sussex roosters are considered calm and gentle compared with many other breeds, they are not perfect.
Roosters are likelier than hens to start fights, make a racket, and pick on quieter breeds.
If you are a fan of roosters, you likely don’t have an issue with noise anyway.
However, if you don’t have experience raising roosters and are considering getting a Sussex, just know they all have their temperaments.
Chickens are much like people in this regard.
They are individuals and don’t always fit into broader descriptions.
Many people keep extremely gentle and personable Sussex roosters.
But nobody can guarantee you will have a calm and polite gentleman for a rooster.
They are more likely to be noisy than their female counterparts.
Reasons to Raise Sussex Chickens
Sussex is a hardy breed, good at laying even in cold weather.
They will make a perfect addition to your flock, especially if you live in an area with cold winters.
Summer is a little more difficult for them. However, they don’t quit laying because of hot weather either.
All you need to do is give them adequate light in the winter months to keep egg production up and enough shade and cool water during hot, foul weather in the summertime.
Further Reading: Complete Guide to Sussex Eggs
Sussex birds are hardy in more ways than one, too.
They are resistant to most illnesses and don’t usually have health problems.
They are larger birds with beautiful hens and roosters alike.
The layers can lay anywhere from 3-5 eggs per week, depending on the specific variety of Sussex you get.
Speckled Sussex are some of the most popular because of their friendly disposition and beautifully patterned feathers.
All Sussex birds tend to be calm and gentle, a great choice for people with families or other pets.
They aren’t instigators and won’t cause problems in the coop.
They are more likely to become the victims of bullies than to be bullies themselves.
Read next: Are Sussex chickens good for meat?