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Roosters? How many are too many?

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 

I have 5 roosters and 15 hens. It was a bit of an accident as after my old rooster died I purchased 6 new hens and 3 new roosters (all young this summer hatches).
It turned out that only 4 of 6 hens were actually hens and 2 were roosters! So I've got 5 roosters now:/.
They seem to keep the peace between themselves so far, but I'm wondering if as they get older if they will fight. I'm hoping not.
Do they get more agressive as they age? They are about 6-7 months right now. if they get along now will they keep the pecking order and learn to live together.
I'm finding that now that they are all mature that some of my hens are getting humped raw. Loosing lots of feathers on their heads, necks and backs from the roosters being too agressive when mating. Is their a way I can stop this...I know "get rid of some roosters' is an obvious choice, but I hate to part with them as they are all unique breeds and I'm eagre for special chicks this spring.
I separated 2 hens who were especially bare, from the rest, to grow some feathers back....when I re-introduce them will they get picked on?
Any advice, ideas, appreciated.....I'm a newbie at roosters wink

Sustainable solutions begin at home   http://www.canadianactionparty.ca
-The People United Will Not Be Defeated!
-We do not inherit this earth from our anscestors, we borrow it from our children.
-Keep Alberta Nuclear Free!
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Sustainable solutions begin at home   http://www.canadianactionparty.ca
-The People United Will Not Be Defeated!
-We do not inherit this earth from our anscestors, we borrow it from our children.
-Keep Alberta Nuclear Free!
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post #2 of 9

I have 3 roosters and 40 hens.  One has 12 to himself and the other two split up the rest although one is the Alpha for sure. The favorites get defeathered easily so I bought them some saddles (AKA lingerie).   I think one roo per 5 hens is a bit much but maybe it depends on the breeds.  I had to send 4 extras to freezer camp this Fall because it was just too much for the girls...they never got a moments peace!
Some people on BYC have bachelor pads for their roos. They keep the boys in their own pen and I think this is also helpful if you are wanting your breeding to be more selective.

Never be bullied into silence.  Never allow yourself to be made a victim.  Accept no one's definition of your life; define yourself.  ~Harvey Fierstein
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Never be bullied into silence.  Never allow yourself to be made a victim.  Accept no one's definition of your life; define yourself.  ~Harvey Fierstein
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post #3 of 9

I have 4 roosters (and some 4month  old cockerals for now).. I have had the 4 roos for about a year now and they still get along. It depends on the roo, but in my flock they do just fine. My roos were introduced when younger. My BR was almost a year old, my BLRW was about 6 months old and my Bantam Cochin and Phoenix mix were about 4 months old when they were all put together.  You will need more hens, but with a good amount of space they could do fine. They just need room to get outta the way of the more dominant roo, seems like they establish the order and keep it that way.

just my experience, but I know people must have multiple roos all the time.

funny how it all started with 6 chickens!
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funny how it all started with 6 chickens!
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post #4 of 9
Thread Starter 

Wonderful! I'm so glad to hear that they can get along in the right environment. I sure dont mind getting more hens for them come spring...if thats what it takes to keep them all happy. Chicken Lingere!!! Bahaha! I'd love to see a pic:lol:  How do you get it to stay on? Did you make it yourself?---I would of never thought!-- but what a neat idea wink

Sustainable solutions begin at home   http://www.canadianactionparty.ca
-The People United Will Not Be Defeated!
-We do not inherit this earth from our anscestors, we borrow it from our children.
-Keep Alberta Nuclear Free!
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Sustainable solutions begin at home   http://www.canadianactionparty.ca
-The People United Will Not Be Defeated!
-We do not inherit this earth from our anscestors, we borrow it from our children.
-Keep Alberta Nuclear Free!
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post #5 of 9

http://www.backyardchickens.com/forum/viewtopic.php?pid=5596664#p5596664
here's
a link to the chicken lingerie discussion....with pictures.

Never be bullied into silence.  Never allow yourself to be made a victim.  Accept no one's definition of your life; define yourself.  ~Harvey Fierstein
No trees were harmed in the generating of this message although a few trillion electrons were greatly inconvenienced.
and your thread is as good as dead.
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Never be bullied into silence.  Never allow yourself to be made a victim.  Accept no one's definition of your life; define yourself.  ~Harvey Fierstein
No trees were harmed in the generating of this message although a few trillion electrons were greatly inconvenienced.
and your thread is as good as dead.
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post #6 of 9

When I found a couple of my hens looking a bit bare, my solution was to get more hens. It worked. But if you don't want to do that, a better solution than removing the bare hens would be removing the roosters. I think quite a few people keep their roos in a separate pen and only put them in with the hens when they're wanting to breed them. I think that sounds like a good way to sort things out.

Breeder of Marsh Daisies; keeper of a pick-n-mix laying flock of Leghorns, Marans, ISA Browns, Black Rocks, Daisy culls and various Mystery Muttleys. The dogs in my avatar pic are fat Sam, the assumed cross of a greedy black Lab and a sneaky Collie, and grumpy Meg, the smallest and narkiest Jack Russell for 50 miles in any direction.
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Breeder of Marsh Daisies; keeper of a pick-n-mix laying flock of Leghorns, Marans, ISA Browns, Black Rocks, Daisy culls and various Mystery Muttleys. The dogs in my avatar pic are fat Sam, the assumed cross of a greedy black Lab and a sneaky Collie, and grumpy Meg, the smallest and narkiest Jack Russell for 50 miles in any direction.
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post #7 of 9

Hmm.  I must go count my roosters, now. 

Depending on the dynamics of the flock, TWO could be too many, or there may be no top limit.   Up until last weekend, none of mine fought.  I have an up-and-coming cockerel who is as large as my dominant roo (up until now, there were only bantam cockerels for him to worry about, and he didn't) and has challenged him in a pretty impressive fight.  No bloodshed.  But an amazing spectacle.

We shall see how things unfold.  I have a SLEW of roosters in my chicken collection.  They break up into two or three flock-like groups, though, as they range freely over one acre.

-- Linda (AKA: gryeyes)
I refuse to fight a battle of wits with an unarmed person.

Buncha Outdoor PET chickens, ducks, 5 Toulouse geese, and 7 turkeys....so far. Plus 2 wiener dogs, 2 bunnies, a rescue cat which owns me and a new kitten. Oh, yeah: and a house silkie....

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-- Linda (AKA: gryeyes)
I refuse to fight a battle of wits with an unarmed person.

Buncha Outdoor PET chickens, ducks, 5 Toulouse geese, and 7 turkeys....so far. Plus 2 wiener dogs, 2 bunnies, a rescue cat which owns me and a new kitten. Oh, yeah: and a house silkie....

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post #8 of 9

These theads may help you.  Some repetition but I think good information and different viewpoints.

Breeders managing roosters
http://www.backyardchickens.com/forum/viewtopic.php?id=250327

Number of roosters thread
http://www.backyardchickens.com/forum/viewtopic.php?id=219443

Managing multiple roosters
http://www.backyardchickens.com/forum/viewtopic.php?id=229968

Many people have multiple roosters and don't have big problems regardless of hen to rooster ratio, but some do.  My normal advice is to keep as few roosters as you can and still meet your goals.  The more roosters you have, the more likely you are to have a problem.

They are young and the hormones are raging in the roosters.  The pullets are quite likely resisting too which can make the mating that much rougher.  Some young roosters just won't take no for an answer.  The problems with your hens may get better as they age, roosters and hens, but again they may not.  That is discussed in the first link by people I trust. 

Will they fight more as they mature.  Maybe.  Hard to say.  Some people have experienced that but others find that they stay fairly peaceful once all that is sorted out.  I can't give you any guarantees, one way or the other.  They are all individuals.

Good luck!

Freedom is not the right to do what we want, but what we ought....Abraham Lincoln (Freedom carries responsibility)

The spirit of liberty is the spirit which is not too sure that it is right.....Judge Learned Hand  (The more sure your are that your way is the only right way, the more likely you are wrong.)

 

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

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Freedom is not the right to do what we want, but what we ought....Abraham Lincoln (Freedom carries responsibility)

The spirit of liberty is the spirit which is not too sure that it is right.....Judge Learned Hand  (The more sure your are that your way is the only right way, the more likely you are wrong.)

 

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

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post #9 of 9
Thread Starter 

Great advice in the links! Thanks so much big_smile
I am much more confident now that everything should be fine between them as we've never really had a major scuffle...being as they are all quite young still they should learn to live together in peace.
As for the hen-lingerae! What an idea....and so Cute love I got such a chuckle seeing them in their little getups! lau   I speculate the neighbours will too seeing my hens all dressed up for some intimacy!

Sustainable solutions begin at home   http://www.canadianactionparty.ca
-The People United Will Not Be Defeated!
-We do not inherit this earth from our anscestors, we borrow it from our children.
-Keep Alberta Nuclear Free!
Reply
Sustainable solutions begin at home   http://www.canadianactionparty.ca
-The People United Will Not Be Defeated!
-We do not inherit this earth from our anscestors, we borrow it from our children.
-Keep Alberta Nuclear Free!
Reply
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