a mother hen

Like this video? Subscribe to our free daily email and get a new idiom video every day!

a mother hen

A person who looks out for the welfare of others, especially to a fussy, intrusive, or overprotective degree. Jenny can be a bit of a mother hen when we're out at the bars. I wish she would just relax a little and let us have a good time! My dad is pretty relaxed about most things, but he can be a bit of a mother hen when it comes to who I hang out with.
See also: hen, mother
References in periodicals archive ?
HEN FACTS 1 The hen is the closest living relative to the T-Rex 2 The older hens are, the larger their eggs 3 Hens can remember almost 100 different humans and recognise them 4 The ancestors of domesticated hens are Asian jungle fowl 5 The phrase pecking order comes from hens because they live in groups with a strict hierarchy 6 Hens make 30 different sounds each with a specific meaning understood by other hens such as food is near or danger 7 There are an estimated 25 billion hens in the world 8 A mother hen turns her egg about 50 times a day 9 A hen can live for a short time without a head if the person cutting off the head accidentally cauterises the blood vessels 10 Hens can see in colour like humans and unlike many animals such as dogs
Once I found a mother hen frantic, looking for her babies.
Manufactured feeds and mail-order chicks scarcely fit earlier models for sustainable home flocks, which were historically managed as scavengers of free natural feeds, and in which replacement birds were the spontaneous gift of "broodiness," or a mother hens instinct to hatch eggs--a trait that has been deliberately bred out of modern breeds.