A question on mating (and a few other questions)

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by TheMainException, Sep 22, 2010.

  1. TheMainException

    TheMainException Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 7, 2010
    Lebanon, PA
    I had an original flock that I got at about 8-10 weeks old with a few roos and a few hens in it. I let them grow up for about 8-10 more weeks and then got a second larger flock of 8-10 weeks old that I eventually integrated with the old flock. Now the old flock is 20-24 weeks old and the new flock is 12-16 weeks old. There's the background info.

    My dominant roo (or any of the roos) in the older flock has never once mated with any of the hens (that I've seen, although I've seen plenty of feather pulling without any real mating attempts). Today I'm watching my flock and notice the dominant roo of the younger flock walk over to a very young looking hen of the young flock (she seems less than 12 weeks, she is tiny compared to the others) and step on her back and grab her head feathers and gets on with business. My older, dominant roo didn't even bother to do anything about this!!

    It's extremely obvious who the males and females are in the flock by now and it's also very apparent who is at the top of the pecking order, which is why I'm so confused. Why haven't my older roos figured anything out yet? I'm also still wondering where my eggs are. They are nearly 6 months old and not a single egg.

    Lastly, I plan on separating all my hens and roos and taking the hens with me to my new house and leaving the roos at my parents' house. If I choose to bring a roo or two along with me at some point, would I have to go through the quarantine process all over again with the roos?

  2. Mahonri

    Mahonri Urban Desert Chicken Enthusiast Premium Member

    May 14, 2008
    North Phoenix
    My Coop
    Wow.. that's a lot of questions.

    What breeds do you have?

    I have some Ameraucana roos that are almost 6 months old and haven't even thought about breeding.

    I have a polish/amerauana mix the same age that is crowing and getting business taken care of.

    Also, my brown egg layers start laying right at 20 weeks. My Ameraucanas and EEs usually don't lay until they are at least 6 months old... some of my marans are the same.

    I'd say if all the birds are from the same flock and cleaning conditions remain the same, without introduction of any other adult birds, there is no need to quarantine.
    Last edited: Sep 22, 2010
  3. TheMainException

    TheMainException Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 7, 2010
    Lebanon, PA
    Well, see...that's always my problem. I have only hints of ideas as to what my chickens are. There is definitely Polish mixed in with a bunch of them, possible D'Uccle in one, maybe a Maran or two, maybe one is a Chantecler, and others I'm still unsure.

    Mahonri, I always appreciate that you are so quick to answer and are very thorough, thanks.

    Also, I heard that once the roos are on their own, they calm down a bit and stop their bickering. Is this usually the case? I'm hoping they create a bit of a bachelor pad and not a boxing ring once I remove the girls from the equation. I'd like to get rid of some of the roos, but it's been hard to find homes for them and bantams just aren't all that great for meat compared to the work it takes to get the meat (plus, I named them before I knew their sex...I keep making this mistake).

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