Are roosters necessary for hens to get along?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by hennotrooster, Feb 18, 2013.

  1. hennotrooster

    hennotrooster Songster

    Sep 16, 2012
    Hesperia CA
    I am told that we need a roo to maintain the peace in our little flock of 6 since we have too many mounters. We have 2 that seem to be getting picked on if I am not out in the yard. I am the head hen or the roo depends on the day for them. Please give me all the advise you all have from years of experience and having many more than 6 hens, we did have a roo before the behavior started I have shared this before but it just seems that it is out of control.

  2. luvmyEs

    luvmyEs Songster

    Dec 9, 2011
    North Carolina
    In my personal rooster experience (only 2 roosters), my hens get along much better withOUT a rooster. After the second rooster, I said no more. Both times, a certain hen would refuse to submit to the rooster. In the end, both roosters viciously attacked her and caused all the other hens to pick on her. She is head hen now that we have no roosters and does a much better job alerting to danger IMO.
  3. ladytoysdream

    ladytoysdream Chirping

    Mar 25, 2010
    New York
    You really don't need a rooster unless you want to raise chicks from your own eggs. We have 2 and currently all is well. But if I did not raise my own replacements, then I would not have any roosters. Roosters do good to warn hens of danger when they are free ranging.

    If you have a good rooster, then all is well. If you have bad rooster, then it will cause havoc with the hens. Also with the price of grain, why add a extra mouth to feed ?
    Last edited: Feb 18, 2013
  4. Eggcessive

    Eggcessive Free Ranging Premium Member

    Apr 3, 2011
    southern Ohio
    I never really believed that you had to have a roo in your flock until we removed our 3 roos for a few days to settle them down when one was getting picked on. They got along fine in their bachelor coop after establishing the leader, but the hens all started fighting when they were rearranging the pecking order. They were just mean, but as soon as we put in the leader roo, he calmed everyone down, and I became convinced he was necessary. Our rooster is so good at warning when the hawks are around and he makes sure the girls don't venture off too far from the group. But, if you don't have a good rooster, I would keep looking for one.
  5. nanaluvsgps

    nanaluvsgps Songster

    Apr 5, 2012
    Since the roo is now gone and their is no dominant rooster to control the flock the hens are trying to work out whose dominant. You don't need a rooster with the hens to keep peace. Soon they will all get along... hopefully ;)
  6. hennotrooster

    hennotrooster Songster

    Sep 16, 2012
    Hesperia CA
    This is what I have been told that the roo keeps the peace. Our 2 head hens (sisters) are mean since the roo is gone but Rachel was mean at 3 days old and still is but now she is meaner and when she took the part of the roo she was mounting the younger 4 more often and aggressively than the roo did and her sister was holding them down by the back of their heads. She is now separated but is allowed to be with the flock a couple times a week. I am just confused about the behavior since two of the younger 4 are starting to mount which ever hen they can, this is what is confusing to me since I have been told that (by much older ex chicken keepers) they do not recall such behavior in their birds. Some had roos and others did not. So needless to say I am confused and not sure what to do Rachel had even started to pluck the feathers of the hen she would mount and one hen had blood drawn hence my frustration with the whole thing.[​IMG]
  7. chickathon

    chickathon Chirping

    Aug 12, 2011
    West Virginia
    I think you do need a roo to get your girls to get along. I have a barred rock roo that is a complete gentleman. A couple of girls will start in on each other and he'll just go over and kind of jump/sit on them to break them up. Crisis over. I also have a astralorp/barred rock mix who is a little more full beans but treats the girls well. I would avoid some breeds in the rooster department because of their tremperment. RIR roos are just plain MEAN.
    here is a pic of my little gentleman.

  8. hennotrooster

    hennotrooster Songster

    Sep 16, 2012
    Hesperia CA
    You know the more I see barred rock birds the more I am liking them. He sure is a handsome fellow. I was attacked as a kid by my grandparents roo and I have a bit of fear left in me. We did have one that I had to put the fear of a soup pot in as he got very aggressive so I went on the attack and he stopped after that but my FNL still culled him. He was not a protector nor did he keep the peace and was rather aggressive with the girls towards his last days not letting them eat unless I stood watch. He just did not want to share anymore. I will have to look more into the barred rock roo. Thanks for the tip.

    Is that his main hen behind him?
    Last edited: Feb 19, 2013

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