I haven't dealt with a chicken situation since I was four and staying with my great grandmother. I can't remember anything from then, so I guess I am an extreme newbie. My family and I are wanting to start raising once the warmer weather comes around. In Alabama, that's in about 3-5 more weeks but my question is, do I need a rooster? We aren't wanting to hatch our own just yet, we want to master the art of collecting, cleaning, handling, feeding, etc. before we try to raise any. With four children between the ages of 2 and 6, that could (but hope not) take awhile. Is the rooster needed to get the hens to drop their eggs like other male animals are needed for females to get interested? Or will they still have eggs without him? Is there some sort of trick to it? Like get older hens that have had chicks before?