are roos often more tamed if they were raised with humans????

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by chickenandchick, Dec 29, 2012.

  1. chickenandchick

    chickenandchick Out Of The Brooder

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    are roos often more tamed if they were raised with humans???? I need to know this for our chicks. please reply if you know the answer
     
  2. theoldchick

    theoldchick The Chicken Whisperer

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    Roosters are Roosters. Some people handle them and some people don't. I handle all my chickens when they are young as it makes handling them as adults much easier. However, when I learn I have a rooster, I make then understand the concept of personal space. I make them lay on their side and when they stop struggling, I let them go. As they grow older I make a point to herd roosters away from the hens. Some roosters are more trainable than others. Some breeds are more aggressive. A good rooster is a gem to have. A mean rooster should not be tolerated and should be culled.
     
  3. speckledhen

    speckledhen Intentional Solitude Premium Member

    I agree with theoldchick.

    What you should also consider is that temperament is heritable. It is passed down more often than not to his progeny, mostly the males, though you can have an aggressive hen on occasion as well. I will not keep or breed from a human-aggressive large fowl rooster, period. I've had wonderful Barred Rocks, Blue Orps, Ameraucanas and Delawares, but have also had aggressive ones in each of those breeds (except the Orpington, but I never kept other than the one in my avatar). Folks sought out Suede's sons because of their temperament. It was definitely passed down and very desirable.

    All the ones I mentioned who turned aggressive at mating age were handled as chicks. Doesn't matter. I mean handled, not coddled/cuddled, either. In fact, if a rooster is genetically inclined to be human aggressive, handling him a lot as a youngster will make that temperament show itself sooner and in full force--he feels very comfortable in taking you on since you have made yourself on his level, to a degree. I've seen that happen with the friendliest males in a group. They are your best buddy-until the hormones hit and they start with the attacks. It's the hormones that will show the temperament most often, that breeding age.

    Why put up with a human-aggressive rooster when you can have one like my Isaac, who does his duty of breeding and watching out for his hens, and is completely easygoing and friendly? Check out the video in this post for proof of what a rooster can be like:
    https://www.backyardchickens.com/t/384349/sdwd/14610#post_8894682
    Another video from photobucket: http://s673.photobucket.com/albums/vv95/Mtnviewpoultry/Video Clips/?action=view&current=DSCN5537.mp4

    Ike was not handled much as a chick, in fact, hardly at all. He comes from a line of Delawares chosen for temperament. Some breeders may not care about that, but 99% of backyard flock owners and a large portion of quality breeders sure do.

    I do not require my roosters to be cuddly, but I do require them to be intelligent enough not to attack the hand that feeds them; and though some would disagree with me, I've come to believe that it is partly a function of intelligence. Smarter ones know who feeds and waters and who is not a threat to their hens.

    ETA: I suggest you handle any chick from time to time. You want a rooster you can catch to do necessary things, such as tend wounds, blunt spurs if needed, etc. Don't coddle the males and when they are breeding age, ignore them for the most part, give them their space, but never run from one if threatened. Stand your ground and back him off if he seems threatening. If he attacks, that is not the one you need for your flock. Biting before maturity can be boundary testing and can usually be stopped by grabbing up the youngster and holding his beak shut for a few seconds-they really hate that. If it progresses to flogging and it happens more than once, that's when I cull the rooster, either by offering him to someone who doesn't care about such things (with full disclosure of his behavior), or by making him stew. That is my personal take on it and works for me-some folks will disagree and they can do what they like. It has given me wonderful flock leaders here and I will continue to manage my flocks that way.
     
    Last edited: Dec 29, 2012
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  4. WalkingOnSunshine

    WalkingOnSunshine Overrun With Chickens

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    SpeckledHen's advice is all wonderful, especially the bit about boys that are predisposed to be aggressive behaving that way sooner if cuddled and treated as a pet. There are so many stories here on BYC of people's "best friend" rooster suddenly starting to flog them that I've started to see "super friendly and cuddly" almost as a warning sign in a young rooster. To me, there's no real difference between a bull, a stallion, or a rooster. All are built to be intimidating and dangerous, and all must be treated with respect and a degree of wariness.
     
  5. Sonoran Silkies

    Sonoran Silkies Flock Mistress

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    Speckled Hen, as always you dispense great advice!

    Some of my birds get lots of cuddling and some don't; I do try to give some handling to all. Quite frankly, I have not seen that cuddling or handling makes any difference either way in adulthood or teenage aggression. I will give teenagers with raging hormones a bit more slack than a bird who should be past that, but I have to say that I have had very few birds that were aggressive. Even when dealing with a couple of friends flocks and being warned about a rooster, they have not attacked me. I honestly think that it was because they did not get any fear vibes from me, and they did from their owners.

    Now there have been a couple of birds at shows that I would not deal with at all--ready to grab and bite any hand that came within reach--even if food was obviously visible. (As part of the show staff I was feeding the bird--those two boys went hungry until their owner showed up.)

    On another site someone once said that roosters can view humans in one of three ways, and two of those ways are bad.
    1) Competition for the ladies or his role as flock leader,
    2) As a danger to the flock--something they need to be protected from, or
    3) A benevolent force of nature that usually provides good things, and is as useless to fight against as a massive tree, wind or rain.
     
  6. chickenandchick

    chickenandchick Out Of The Brooder

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    Thankyou all of you. that was just the right advice for me[​IMG]
     
  7. jyurina

    jyurina Out Of The Brooder

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    There are more experienced people here, but I just dealt with this. I had a hatching of 6-4 were roosters. All of them were raised with copious daily contact from the family especially my daughter who carted them all around all the time. Out of those 4 only one was nasty to people. He regularly attacked us once he got to be about 5 months old. His favorite trick was to wait for you to turn your back and then try to judo chop the back of your knees. And since he was a good 7 pounder it was quite a hot when you didn't expect it. The other roos were very tame and docile with people and allowed us to pick them up and cuddle them. We had to get rid of all of them due to local laws but chickens seem to be like all animals I have raised, handling them early and often makes for better interactions. I just brought home 4 three week old chicks who have mainly just been with other chicks at the feed store and we are getting them used to handling.
     
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  8. chickenandchick

    chickenandchick Out Of The Brooder

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    Thankyou, and i was thinking so, because of our old roo, and these ones. I feel that you are correct[​IMG]
     
  9. speckledhen

    speckledhen Intentional Solitude Premium Member

    Quote: Same here-not all are handled to the same degree, though all are handled. I agree that handling will not change their innate tendencies; I have come to believe it just brings out what is already there sooner in most of them. Of course, as with any living creature, they just may not follow a set pattern of behavior you expect or react to the same things in the same manner as you have seen in the past, either. Who the heck knows what goes on in their little walnut sized brains sometimes?

    Isaac had one brother who was actually in the running for first pick due to his broad size and super friendly attitude-he was always first on our knee when we were sitting in the pen from the time he was three weeks old or so, first to want attention. We even started calling him "Mr. Friendly" to distinguish him from the others. DH loved to go in that pen and spend time with him. That cockerel was also first to bite and flog and became increasingly aggressive as he started mating the pullets in that pen. He began to be a bad influence on another male and I gave them both away with full disclosure just in case their bad manners might affect Ike.
     
    Last edited: Dec 31, 2012

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