Adding a new rooster to a flock that includes a bantam rooster

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by cait8876, Nov 17, 2016.

  1. cait8876

    cait8876 Out Of The Brooder

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    We currently have 6 hens, and two roosters - a black australorp (called Oreo) and a bantam golden sebright (Hawkeye)

    Oreo is just too mean to us. When they're out of their run he's been attacking us more and more. We can't be scared to walk around our own yard! We tried to make it work because he gets along great with the flock, including our little guy hawkeye - who is totally in charge. We got them all at the same time in april, these are out first chickens.

    So we've decided Oreo has to go. But when he's gone my husband wants another full sized rooster. Hawkeye is mighty but he still is tiny so we don't think there is much he can fight off. I know 2 roosters is technically too many for only 6 hens, but we do plan on adding a few new chickens in the spring. Since we're new to this and our other rooster is small I worry for his safety on top of properly adding a new rooster to the flock.

    What are tips for adding a new rooster to the flock? Ive just begun my research and can tell theres a lot of different tips, but our situation may be different with our tough guy little.

    Were just started looking through local farm swap sites for roosters, we should get one thats full grown correct? Oreo was great until he hit maturity. I just want a sweet boy, I'm so nervous to bring in a new one who could turn out to be another jerk [​IMG]

    heres a photo of our little guy and big meanie [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
  2. PeepersMama

    PeepersMama Overrun With Chickens

    If you are concerned about a new roo fighting with hawkeye, then you could get one as a chick. Then there is the chance that he will grow up and be mean, but in my experience larger breed roosters tend to be the best. Get an orpington; they rock.
    If you decide to go with an adult rooster, then you can be sure that he won't be mean to you guys, but he will likely flatten hawkeye. Unless he's just an awesome roo - like an orpington! [​IMG] Our boy Arrow didn't fight unless a lesser roo was taking one of his hens on a date. Even when we got an EE roo accidentally one year, he showed him who was boss, and let him be. He was an AWESOME rooster; I can't say enough good about him.
    Good luck!
     
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  3. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    My Coop
    Having 2 or more males often is an invitation to disaster......
    .....tho it can work with proper housing, space, a knowledgeable keeper, and the right cock/erels.
    It can create an environment of competition that can make all the males behave more aggressively...both to humans and birds.
    Handling males is another learning curve on the chickeneering spectrum, and it can be a steep one.

    It's a crap shoot on whether they can really 'protect' the flock.
    They are usually the first victims if they try to fend of a predator.
    A speed bump...or appetizer...on the way to the buffet.

    Integrating new birds is yet another learning curve.......You need extra, and separate, space when bringing in new birds/chicks.
    Bringing in a mature(over one year old) and well behaved cockbird into a flock of females is the easiest integration.
    If there is already a cock/erel present, then again you'll have a crap shoot game on your hands.

    If you're new to chicken keeping, I'd advise to keep it simple until you get some experience under your belt.
    One or more foldable wire dogs crates are an essential tool, IMO, in the chicken keepers arsenal.....
    ...especially if you are dealing with multiple males.
    If(when) it gets ugly it happens fast and you want a place to secure/separate a 'problem' birds, like right now.

    Read up on integration..... BYC advanced search>titles only>integration
    This is good place to start reading, tho some info is outdated IMO:
    https://www.backyardchickens.com/a/adding-to-your-flock
     
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  4. Mrs. K

    Mrs. K Overrun With Chickens

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    Truthfully, wishing they would all be nice, does not work. I would recommend culling both roosters, and just going with a all hen flock just to give yourself some time to get some chicken experience. If you are set on having at least one rooster, I would keep what you have, culling the mean one, or culling both of them and getting ONE mature rooster.

    I know this is not what you want to hear, but cock fighting is a real probability when you introduce a new rooster to an established flock with a rooster. Flocks are all about territory. Even if they don't kill each other, or one the other, they are going to run your hens ragged trying to establish pecking order and dominance. Most likely, your entire flock is going to be in a high state of tension most of the time.

    A lot depends on space, what is a backyard chicken flock to you. IF you have a very large coop/run, enough for a lot more birds than you have, maybe you can make it work, but more than likely it will not be pretty, with quite a bit of fighting for a longish spell.

    You perhaps are thinking, the banty rooster is a great rooster and does not deserve to be culled. Personally, I solve problems for the health and peace of my flock. I cull birds (by removing them from the flock, either in harvesting them, or giving them away) so that the birds left are quiet and peaceful. It is very easy to get too many birds in a confined area, and it is easy to get the wrong birds in a flock.

    Roosters are a crap shoot, some turn out great, they are a treat, some are terrible, and some go from a darling to a nightmare in what seems like an instant. I do like having a rooster in my flock. I have had two roosters (father/son) and it worked ok, but things were better when I removed one. I do think an adult, full size rooster helps with daytime predation, but not all roosters are great at this.

    However, the main point I would like to make, is that roosters can ruin the whole chicken experience. Either by having the wrong temperament or too many roosters for your flock.
    Mrs K
     
    Last edited: Nov 18, 2016
    2 people like this.
  5. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

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    I"d cull the mean guy and wait for spring. When you add new chicks, you may well get an Oops cockerel, or you may chose to add a cockerel intentionally. Raising one up in a flock is the better way to go. He'll grow up with better manners, and hopefully will be a better guy for you than your first one turned out.

    As far as not having a grown rooster----they really don't "fight off" predators in most folk's experience. Roosters give alarms, your little guy will do that just fine. Yeah, the rare rooster will take on a predator, but most will call and sound the retreat, not advance into the fray.
     

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