Sounds like you have a good arrangement there with your neighbour taking the roosters off your hands when necessary. It's a win win that way really. My hen does have bare spots on the sides of her back that I don't think will ever grow in new feathers. I'm glad I started this thread as it seems many people have been, or are in now, the same boat, and feel guilty about making the decision about a mean rooster. It is clear to me that it is, in some cases, necessary and it's 'ok' to have them killed humanely if that is the only option. We're not rooster 'haters'....we just don't have the means to deal with them and in my case it was indeed the best option for me and especially my one hen who was in with him. : )
Rooster turned mean... - Page 6
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I raised my two roosters from baby chicks. I was never afraid of either of them and then the BA rooster started acting aggressive. The white GSL was very meek. One day the black rooster came after me and when I resisted his attack he flew straight up as high as my face and I'm 5' 6" tall. I sold him ASAP. The white rooster just took his place overnight and finally got me as I mentioned in previous post.
I acted on the advice I read online to act the boss, don't back down, etc. When the black rooster made his first aggressive acts toward me I would run at him and make him get away. I thought that was showing him who the boss was. Well it might work for some roosters but not all. Didn't work for the white rooster either. Now with my only rooster that's a BO, I've done everything different. He keeps his eye on me but if I get close to him, he runs in the other direction. It might be his breed or that he's just going to be nice. He's past the age when the other roosters started getting mean.
I don't have picture of the black and white rooster when they were older.
The BO is much larger now. I don't have a recent photo of him.
Edited by pfields - 7/26/16 at 8:40am
As with all livestock, you never ever make a Pet from an entire male. Ie bull boar ram rooster.
Second- hens get sick of being raped and annoyed by a rooster. One on one is esp not good for your hen. She will eventually get on with the other hens. They have their pecking order and work it out. She will learn to stand up for herself or steer clear of the boss hen.
Thirdly, give him to someone to eat. Make sure you tell them he is aggressive. and dont do it again. Make a pet of a hen if you must but leave the boys alone. petting them when young if anything makes him not scared of you and he can become very nasty when the testosterone kicks in.
I'm a little late to this party, but thought I would share my story. I have 4 hens and one roo. We never intended to get a rooster, we thought we were getting another hen, and that of course turned out not to be the case. At first since he was the new kid on the block all the other hens would chase him and "bully" him to establish the pecking order. Now that he is older (about a year old or a little less?) he is the top dog, lol. He does get aggressive with my mom and I, and he has left some nasty scratches on me. The only thing that has saved him from becoming dinner is that he is GREAT with the girls. They free range during the day, and he does an excellent job at keeping them safe in the yard. Between stray dogs in the area and natural predatures, he keeps a good eye on them and directs them to safety when needed. He also makes sure they all get their share of bugs and food. When I fill their feeder he even goes and "checks it out"... when he deems it safe, he drops a few bits on the ground and calls the hens over to eat... it's rather cute, lol. (Who says chivalry is dead?)
That being said, he hasn't made our lives miserable. We do make sure we have a "weapon" when we go out just to be sure. We have this small plastic rake with a long handle that we carry around and use to push him back in case he decides to come after us. Now, when he does come after us, he goes for the rake instead of our legs. We are careful about turning our backs to him, and such. Generally, as long as we respect his space and keep a distance between him and us, he will respect it in return and all is good. But be sure, if it ever gets out of hand and it gets dangerous for us, then he will certainly become dinner and I have told him so!
I loved reading your story of your rooster and hens...thanks for sharing. They do indeed protect them well and I wish I had the set up of free range...maybe our rooster would have been able to stay around...but with one hen and a coop and attached yard to that...it was too much. It sounds like you have the perfect balance of rooster to hen ratio. Your secret weapon seems to do the trick. He is a lucky rooster. I will mention again though that my hen is VERY happy without his 'attention'...so if you have to part with him someday for that particular reason (too hard on the hens)...just do it. : )
Your Rooster sounds about right balance. The number of hens that are enough for a rooster very much depends on the rooster.
For the one who killed the other rooster, 25 hens was not enough to share. I have had 3 roosters in the past who could willing share 24 hens. And both they and the hens knew to whom they belonged. However, right now I have just 1 rooster for 32 hens and thinking about retiring him. He does the same deeds for his hens as you described, calls them for first dibs on bugs, treats etc. We have a large fenced pen that the hens, ducks & geese share for part of the day. They all get out for free-range time and that seems to stabilize attitudes a lot. However Mr. Rooster tends to like to mount just a few hens often in spite of having 32 to choose from. So he is just taking the feathers off the backs of about 5. We also decided that since some of the flock are his offspring, we do not want to breed anymore from him. So he will be going in the next month or so. Think we will leave the girls rooster-free for a while after that. Maybe 2 or 3 years even. Just before I got rid of the 2nd rooster last spring, the two were fighting over hens. One would mount her, then the other. Basically claiming her back. Then the first would take her again. So we got rid of the one with the longest spurs (the older one). And now that the feathers have grown back, the one left has taken to focusing on just a few again.
He's very handsome... Remember the photo that went around of The Angry Bluebird? This photo makes Butterscotch look like "The Angry Rooster" LOL