Brahma Temperament Bantam vs Standard? aggression problems!?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by SkyRoo, May 2, 2008.

  1. SkyRoo

    SkyRoo In the Brooder

    Mar 6, 2008

    I read all over the place people praising Brahmas for their excellent temperaments and gentleness.
    so two months ago when we purchase chicks we got 5 light brahma bantams and 5 buff bantams.

    wow~they are the most nasty of the entire batch of chicks! (silkies, cochins 3 varities, and duccles)

    yes they are bold and outgoing.... They are very pecky and have no hesitation of pecking hard and deliberately grabbing skin, cloths, they now almost break the skin! (they leave a mark on the skin of hands. not bleeding but almost.) they peck hard when offering treats and even just sitting with them they will walk up and grab hold of ya! they are bold and jump right up on your lap but they are ornery monsters!

    (and only 7wks old...this attitude from them has been present from about 2wks age and gotten worse with the days passing! needless to say we will not be keeping any of these)

    they also have a lot of issues getting along with the other chicks including their own kind. They have a very high aggression/dominance disposition with all the chicks. have found them to be the big bullies in the group and often (a few times an hour) we find the other chicks crying and huddle in corner with Brahmas running around with feathers in their mouths~! the Brahmas seem to search out opportunities to bully and fight.

    I think they are very aggressive for their age and we have actually this week needed to separate out some of the cochins and silkies and duccles from the Brahmas! *all the other breeds are sooo gentle and docile compared to these Brahmas.*

    Yikes I am so baffled.

    is the standards different? is this the ones folks refer as to being so sweet, docile, and gentle?
    is there often a difference in standard vs bantam temperaments?
    I wonder if different hatcheries produce different temperament inclinations in their strains? (temperament genetic inheritance)

    love to learn other peoples experience with bantam vs standard and if its a matter of strain/hatchery for better temperaments in Brahmas.

    I thought of trying another order of a few hens (standard Brahmas) from the hatchery....we would really like to enjoy a few Brahma hens but after these bantams I am really at loss in regards to their disposition and if the standards would be any different. (or perhaps a different hatchery with different strain?)
  2. SpottedCrow

    SpottedCrow Flock Goddess


    I've only had one Brahma mix with Leghorn and she was a hermaphrodite...but that's another story...She would like to be picked up and cuddled...of course she was humungous and could look me right in the eye...She had her mean times, but I got her and her sister when they were a few months old...She could bite and chew as well as any alligator, but most of the time she was fine...

    What you could do with yours and what I did with Slifer when she was being a Cantankerous Bag of Feathers was to hold her until she stopped fighting then set her down...another thing was to hold her to the ground until she stopped moving, then let her up, like I was a rooster..
    Slifer was a standard sized. Penny was my only bantam.

    I'm really in shock...I wonder if separating the Brahmas from the rest of the bunch would help...
  3. Tuffoldhen

    Tuffoldhen Flock Mistress

    Jan 30, 2007
    I love my standard Light Brahmas....the hens are calm and gentle, lay eggs all year long... The rooster is an awsome fellow, not a mean bone in his body towards me or the hens...another rooster around him is another matter!!
  4. ChicknThief

    ChicknThief Songster

    Jan 12, 2008
    Nor Cal
    Even our sweet Bitsy had a "needle beak". Whenever we would be holding her she would peck freckles, lips, eyeballs... But I don't think it was an agression thing, but more of a curiosity thing. She grew out af it, and maybe they will too??? Ours was a standard as well.
    Last edited: May 2, 2008
  5. mommy9994

    mommy9994 Songster

    Mar 10, 2008
    central VA
    my light brahma, Blooper, is very sweet. She's old though, and we didn't have her as a youngster. She never pecks, and will sometimes let you pick her up and pet her.
  6. SkyRoo

    SkyRoo In the Brooder

    Mar 6, 2008
    okay....seems so far most positive is standards so far? [​IMG]
    thank you for everyone sharing!
    mmm maybe there is a difference in the standards vs bantams

    oh that made me think a bit more....

    its a bit difficult (no thats an understatement...really hard) for me to be certain in sexing them out yet...unlike the cochins and duccle are easy to sex out right now. I wonder if the two Brahmas that are more reserved would be pullets...and the rest roos!? that would be 8 roo out of 10? not good odds there. [​IMG] thus far the rest of other breeds has been pretty close to a 50/50 roo/hen ratio.

    now that you mention about your roo being aggressive to others due to the history (fighting) in the breeding of Brahmas that makes sense.
    I hope removing the others will calm them and help their nice side grow. *there is for sure high tension and problems with the Brahmas.*
    got me thinking also about....
    *they are nice for the most part when you pick them up and hold pecking or bad behavior...its when they are free to move around and interact with you on their own that they seem to be far too rough toward us. Another interesting thing we noticed if we take out 2-3 of them and set them down in the floor with us (without the other chickens) their temperaments are better.
    I sure hope removing the others....will help them.

    right they all have sharp beaks...but they (the Brahmas) for sure peck harder than the other chicks we have and have a demeanor that is very dominate to say the least...they give a good peck that does not seem like others in general curiosity such as curious pecking at freckle, hair, or a scratch. (to give more detail they peck and hold on a second or two and its very rough and bossy....hope that makes sense)
  7. rebecca10782

    rebecca10782 Songster

    Apr 24, 2008
    I have only had my 1 month old chicks for a day . The bantam cochin is the one that like to nip at my fingers sometimes but very gently and the half Standard Cochin half Brahma doesn't do it at all. She was trying to eat my shirt buttons though [​IMG]
  8. DTchickens

    DTchickens Crowing

    Mar 23, 2008
    Bailey, Mississippi.
    I just wanted to say. Believe it or not. No matter what people say. I see it alot "if you want a nice bird Get the "insert breed here" " But i hate to say it.. It just doesn't work that way. Alot of the birds like that may be nice. but there will always be some Lines of them (a line is say hmmm.. My chickens. That i breed. Are my lines.. my friend. The chickens he breeds. are his line. " Meaning. they can be the same breed. even come from the same orginal pair. But heres the kicker. I bred all my birds from nice birds. Say he likes mean birds (agressive ones) all he has to do is take a mean bird and breed it to a nice bird. 50/50 chance of having mean birds. and say. your birds parents. both had the mean gene in them, but weren't mean themselves. well those genes Linked up into your chickens. Which caused all the chickens to be mean. Now there are ways to make the ones you have now be nice. but if you breed them. you will need to do the same Treatment on the offspring.. But im just giving my experience. and what i've seen and done. Hope that no one takes it in a bad way. its just my Opinion [​IMG]
    1 person likes this.
  9. rebecca10782

    rebecca10782 Songster

    Apr 24, 2008
    I have a story that will prove that breed has nothing to do with temperment. When I was little my brother came home with a Pit Bull/Sharpie puppy (bred purley for fighting) he intended on fighting (I know I know believe me, my parents and I were absolutely furious, my brother was very screwed up). He put weights on her legs to make her stronger and I think he started to expose her to fights. When my father saw that, he refused to let him raise the dog. So, she spent the rest of her puppyhood with my parents, me and our Golden Retriever. This dog was abbbbsooolutey the sweetest dog who ever lived. If my brother and I would fight, both the dogs would tremble. The mother cat would beat her up if she was to close the nest, and she would run away terrified. And she was so loyal, we would walk down the street without a leash and all I had to say was "Angel, wait for me" in a normal voice and she would wait. We never trained her to heel or anything. Anyway, I don't know if this has much to do with the post but my point is, it really does not matter what the breed is, it is how they are handled when they are young. One last thing, when I was researching Golden Retrievers to adopt, there were a ton that would bite people. No one even thinks about Golden Retrievers biting, but they were all raised around violence or were abandoned. So, that's my take on it [​IMG]
    Last edited: May 3, 2008
  10. DTchickens

    DTchickens Crowing

    Mar 23, 2008
    Bailey, Mississippi.
    Agree'd It has all to what their exposed to in dogs. but i haven't found much a "matter" of what it does in chickens. Some chickens are just down right mean, i feel like telling a story of some gamefowl i had... Long time ago i had a trio. Of some Hatch gamefowls (BB reds.) the old rooster and hen Nice as they can be. But ohhh boy. They had a son.. by a year old. everytime you got near him. you wanted to ring his neck ( and i treated him like i did all my other chickens. As much "love" as i could give them i hold them from 1 day to Death. always water and feed. Well eventually. We couldn't stop him from being mean. So off he went to a guy we knew he loved them. Well. We thought maybe just him. Raised out of the trio he came out of. Well there ya go. 3 more of the meanest roosters you will ever see LOL. Except they were mean at about 2 months old. older they were. the meaner. Or take another rooster i had. He wouldn't do anymore then bite. But still considered aggressive to me. ( kept him ) and then his brother Wasn't mean a bit. So where did this mean one come from? Well. his father was a mean rooster. Hen was nice. so im guessing thats the 50/50 kicking in [​IMG]. then to prove what i said above. (that even Birds that come from the same guy split off into different people that purchased them can make them mean), my dad got a Trio of Blacks. From some guy.., His friend purchased the same blacks. from the same guy. My dads line. not a mean one in the bunch. well that other guys birds. You couldn't get near. (well these are all gamefowl Their known for their "odd" Agressiveness.) So i guess i'll use some Silkies. My cousin had a silkie (and all people like silkies or most. and will pretty much agree they are calm and tame) This rooster was evil. All im gonna say about him lol. I could go on and on telling a bunch of stories. But the post is getting pretty long. And i really do not mean of this to Contradict what rebecca posted. im just giving my opinion as everyone is entitled to their own. And im a bit worried of the Tornado watches and Severe thunder storm warnings and dont want to go to sleep.
    Last edited: May 3, 2008

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