AWOL rooster - recovery??

mrs1885

In the Brooder
6 Years
Mar 14, 2013
90
3
41
Van Buren Co, TN
So I brought home five new chickens today - 4 hens and a rooster. The rooster learned quickly that he can easily hop our fence............and he did. Took off. I chased him around the pasture, to one end of the property and then down to the other before he won and I gave up. Is there any way to lure him back? I've got the hens locked in their room now for fear they'll jump too. My Speckled Sussex hen is the one that figured it out but I was able to catch her. Then he followed suit. I guess I also have to figure out a new plan for their fencing too.
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ChickenCanoe

Enabler
Premium Feather Member
10 Years
Nov 23, 2010
32,861
27,282
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St. Louis, MO
Moving chickens, even a short distance, requires locking them in for a few days till they're comfortable with the new sleeping quarters. Otherwise, they don't know where home is. As you've discovered, chickens don't herd very well. He was probably trying to go back home.
Try tethering one of the hens and letting her outside tied to the fence. His hens will be the best lure since he now doesn't like you.
 

mrs1885

In the Brooder
6 Years
Mar 14, 2013
90
3
41
Van Buren Co, TN
Moving chickens, even a short distance, requires locking them in for a few days till they're comfortable with the new sleeping quarters. Otherwise, they don't know where home is. As you've discovered, chickens don't herd very well. He was probably trying to go back home.
Try tethering one of the hens and letting her outside tied to the fence. His hens will be the best lure since he now doesn't like you.
Well crumbs. I was afraid chasing him was a bad idea. Ok, I've got a dog crate I can put her in - will that work to maybe lure him? At least that way the hawk can't hurt her. *sigh* I meant to read up on bringing home new chickens and introducing them to the new flock, but wound up having to go get these five first thing this morning. Crap.
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mrs1885

In the Brooder
6 Years
Mar 14, 2013
90
3
41
Van Buren Co, TN
I can hear him in the pasture behind the house calling the hens so I've moved all four hens into the crate. They're making more noise together. The one hen just kind of shrugged and didn't care that she was locked up. Hoping he will come to them and I can move their crate with them into the room and lure him in after them and close the door behind them. Fingers crossed!
 

ChickenCanoe

Enabler
Premium Feather Member
10 Years
Nov 23, 2010
32,861
27,282
1,077
St. Louis, MO
.... Her new name is Rooster Bait, RB for short. LOL
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That got me a good laugh. Thanks, I needed it.
At dusk he will sleep somewhere. Keep an eye out or scout where he is and you may be able to pluck him from the tree branch after dark.

The more noise the hens make the better. If you can at least herd him nearer to your fence, he'll do the rest.
 
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mrs1885

In the Brooder
6 Years
Mar 14, 2013
90
3
41
Van Buren Co, TN
Well he was as far as the mailbox but the dogs saw him out the window and started barking.
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Freaking dogs! He ran back toward the neighbors again but it sounds like he's back over by the garage now, which is just the other side of the wall from the hen house, so that's good. He's getting close. I'll wait until dark and sneak back and see if he's in there and if he is - I really hope so - I'll close the door and let the girls out of the kennel and bring the kennel back in. Otherwise I've got to double crate a couple dogs tonight which I hate to do. Also have to get the baby chicks locked up in there before it gets too dark too. If he beds down in the pasture there's nothing I can do. I tried going after him out there but it's so over grown and the brush has wild roses growing all over that just snag and pull at my pants. It's just way too thick for me to get back there. What worries me most is I know we have A LOT of coyotes, wild dogs, and a mountain lion on our property so I"m afraid if he beds down out there he won't be around in morning.
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Teila

Bambrook Bantams
6 Years
Apr 15, 2013
16,612
26,047
1,026
Forrest Beach, FNQ, Australia
Wow @ "coyotes, wild dogs, and a mountain lion on our property" that is such an awakening for someone who lives in suburban Australia and whose chookies pretty much only have to deal with a small chance of being attacked by next door's very old cat (doubtful), taken by a snake (also doubtful) or scared to death by a possum (slight possibility). I don't have any other advice to add (all of the above sounds good) but I so wish you luck with getting your rooster home and safe and hope that you keep us posted on how you go? Fingers crossed for you and him!
 

mrs1885

In the Brooder
6 Years
Mar 14, 2013
90
3
41
Van Buren Co, TN
Wow @ "coyotes, wild dogs, and a mountain lion on our property" that is such an awakening for someone who lives in suburban Australia and whose chookies pretty much only have to deal with a small chance of being attacked by next door's very old cat (doubtful), taken by a snake (also doubtful) or scared to death by a possum (slight possibility). I don't have any other advice to add (all of the above sounds good) but I so wish you luck with getting your rooster home and safe and hope that you keep us posted on how you go? Fingers crossed for you and him!
It was quite a shock for us too. I was raised on a tiny little island in south Florida. We didn't have chickens at all there. We knew about the coyotes and wild dogs when we moved here. But when our staffie dog came up missing one day and we had been calling her all day, we thought we saw her out back and went out yelling at her. Took a minute to realize it was a mountain lion! And then we were chasing it - don't ask me why. We were halfway through the pasture chasing it as it was chasing a deer. I guess if we caught it I was going to let it know it was grounded for not playing nice with the local wildlife! LOL
 

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