My lead BCM hen brooded some youngsters last year from fertile eggs, and I decided to try to keep one of the cockerels along with 4 of his sisters (all cream legbars). They are all 10 months old now, and the lead hen and another EE girl are 3 years old. This is my first experience with a roo... The cockerel used to love the BCM. A few weeks ago, he was right next to her all the time, acting like her very bestest friend. This past week, I caught him beating up on her - pecking her and chasing her away during food time. Yesterday I found her with a bloody comb (not torn up however), and he was spending the whole day chasing her away from the group, jumping on her to peck her back and isolating her. She responded by staying at the edges, turning away from him if he approached, so in other words, acting appropriately submissive. She did go in to get food, but he acted almost as if he didn't want her to eat much at all, as if he wanted to make her the bottom rung chicken. That eve, the girls were bickering in the coop, and charged in there to break it up - he knocked not only her head but some others and seemed to be trying to rearrange everyone's roosting positions, pecking and bullying- there was a lot of screaming and commotion until I got him out of there. I thought roos were supposed to stop the drama, not ratchet it up???!! I have been reading around like crazy here (thanks to all the wonderful insights centrarchid, azygous, ridgerunner, donrae!!) and there on rooster behavior.... Based on that, here are my possible theories: 1) He is a very young 10-month-old and kind of dumb and clueless. Question: If I kennel him until he gets smart, how long might that be?? 2) The BCM is sick but isn't showing it yet and he wants to keep the flock safe from her. He's had a history of that kind of behavior before. Since this may be the case, I am going to kennel him for a little while to see if she starts showing something. But she basically is usually as healthy as a horse...so not sure this is likely. 3) Something made him flip and see her as rooster-like competition. She had increased her typical morning crows from 1-2 crows/morning to 4-5 shortly before this. She's used to being the flock leader, taking charge of harassing me for treats, coming up to me directly to be the first one to get food. I may have helped this happen the other day by insistently offering her first dibs at a container of scratch that he wanted to get to. Also, this boy has been kenneled separately from the backyard free-ranging flock for most of the last several months (with frequent visits from the ladies, mainly his sisters), because he had decided to try to personally cull my hen with EYP and I wanted her to live until her quality of life declined. He's also recently tested me a bit and I respond by putting him back in the kennel for a day or two. I am wondering if this undermined his power with the flock. Frankly, this guy used to dance like crazy, but I have to admit 95% of the time his target just danced away. He still tidbits like crazy, but he has switched mostly from dancing to morning high-speed chases and afternoon snacktime ambushes. So I am wondering if he is just missing that magic something with the girls (voice too high?? covering technique too shaky??) and he is starting to get more brutal as he tries to gain power and has fixated on her as the problem (even though she squats for him just as much as the others). So maybe if I release him from his latest punish kenneling, he'll develop some confidence somehow or other and go back to his usual mild nice guy self, or else he won't and he may do better with another flock where he is not seen as the youngster, or ..... 4) He is just revealing his true brute nature and it's time to pass him along to someone who will cook him. I would appreciate any helpful expertise or tips! Such as, would it be helpful to hang with the group with a water bottle and spray him every time he attacks her? Thanks for any thoughts!!