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I need Rooster advice and suggestions!

post #1 of 4
Thread Starter 
I hatch several chicks every spring at school with another teacher. They all come back to live on my little farm. Inevitably (of course) I end up with some roosters. I can't decide what to do with them. I love all animals and believe all deserve a chance to live. We collect eggs, but I don't raise chickens for meat. I need some advice as to what options I have for the roosters. Right now, I free range all but a few of them that stay with the hens in large coops. The problem is, they slowly disappear due to predators. I don't have enough hens to keep all of the roosters occupied, so my hens end up getting beaten up if I keep all the roosters cooped up too. I live in Texas, and around here roosters are used for food, fighting, or fish bait. Selling them would almost definitely guarantee death. I feel like that by letting them free range, they at least have a chance at living. They have plenty of shelter and brush and trees to roost and hide in, and I do take care of them by feeding them and providing water.
Does anyone have any other suggestions for me? I have only been raising chickens for about 3 and a half years. Please be nice! Thank you!
post #2 of 4
Yeah, you are in a rough spot. Don’t let anyone guilt you about not eating them. That’s a personal choice, lots of people agree with you. I raise mine for meat but still, that is for you to choose, not me.

If you give them away or even sell them you have lost control of them. Very few people are willing to take in a bunch of roosters and feed them or even just let them run around and feed themselves. They probably will die.

I only see two options for you. Stop taking the chicks home. Either stop hatching (which would be a shame) or find someone else to take them, realizing you have lost control of them.

Or keep the males yourself. That may involve doing as you are or build a “bachelor pad” where all the males are kept penned together. If there are no females to fight over they normally get along pretty well together. Of course your feed bill will go way up since they are not foraging for a lot of their food.

Sometimes there are just no easy choices. If you hatch chicks you will wind up with males.

When you come to a fork in the road, take it.

 

"If you make every game a life-and-death proposition, you're going to have problems. For one thing, you'll be dead a lot." — former North Carolina coach Dean Smith

 

http://www.backyardchickens.com/a/how-much-room-do-chickens-need

Reply

When you come to a fork in the road, take it.

 

"If you make every game a life-and-death proposition, you're going to have problems. For one thing, you'll be dead a lot." — former North Carolina coach Dean Smith

 

http://www.backyardchickens.com/a/how-much-room-do-chickens-need

Reply
post #3 of 4
What RR said. There is nothing more to add.

Chickens off and on for 25+ years and still learning.

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Chickens off and on for 25+ years and still learning.

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post #4 of 4
Thread Starter 
Thank you for replying! I appreciate it!
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