Cockerel Help - Aggressive towards pullets?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by ChickenTenderKesha, Sep 1, 2019.

  1. ChickenTenderKesha

    ChickenTenderKesha Songster

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    Hi everyone, I’ve noticed that my one cockerel Artie, second in command (I think) of my flock, has been agressively pecking my pullets necks. I don’t think he’s trying to mate them as he will “dance” for them and tidbit as well any other time (even when he always gets denied like the other cockerel).. It’s usually when they have their backs to him and are just eating or minding their own business. He will sneak up, stand tall with hackles raised, and just grab them and not let go unless they get away themselves. He tried this on my other cockerel once and took off running when Peter picked his head up and took some steps towards Artie. I’ve seen him with feathers in his beak after I run to see what has the girls all riled up. I have seen him do it a few times now, but others have caught him doing it as well. He only does it to the 4 pullets that are closer to both of the cockerels, the other 6 pullets tend to stay in their own mini flock doing their own free ranging so they don’t get pecked on. They are also a lot more weary of said cockerel but will let my other cockerel Peter hangout with them right in their mini flock even though he’s twice their size. I’m just not sure what to do with him at this point as I have nowhere and nothing to separate him with as my little cockerel Ori is taking up the dog crate and my coop isn’t large enough to have him secluded in there 24/7 for the next few months or so.. I’m caught between a rock and a hard place with Artie and I just don’t know what to do :confused::oops:
     

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  2. ChickenTenderKesha

    ChickenTenderKesha Songster

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    Forgot to mention that he really doesn’t like me and recently he has been screaming when he seems me coming near the coop or when he just catches me coming around a corner.. a long high pitched note ? It sounds and seems like he’s making a warning call for the other chickens since they all look and then carry on as they were when they know it’s me?? He still eats out of my hand and if I’m just hanging out on the grass laying down he will come investigate like the other 5 but he still acts slightly different doing these things... almost like he’s threatened by me?

    Edit: I should mention that he is the type that if you try to pick him up he will peck your fingers/hand (understandable really). He has grabbed onto my pants before when I had to move him one day and only “let go” when I stood up and pulled the fabric from his beak
     
    Last edited: Sep 1, 2019
  3. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler!

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    Knowing more about your chickens would help,
    -your flock size(numbers, ages, genders).
    -your coop(size in feet by feet with pics).

    Multiple males are problem, get rid of all, or all but one.
     
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  4. ChickenTenderKesha

    ChickenTenderKesha Songster

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    My flock consists currently of 2 cockerels and 10 pullets (+1 extra cockerel, he is staying separated though). The ages range from 14-14-19 weeks old, the cockerel and pullets in question are 18 and 19 weeks old currently. My coop is 6’x10’ with a run roughly the same dimensions but half as tall. They free roam my 2 acre farm all day right from the moment they get up until they put themselves to bed as well ..
     

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  5. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler!

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    As hard as it may be...I still think:
     
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  6. CaliFarmsAR

    CaliFarmsAR Songster

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    He is pretty
     
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  7. Oncoming Storm

    Oncoming Storm Songster

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    He may just be trying to prove himself to them? I have six roos, two of actual breeding age and four cockerels and everyone gets along fine. Only one is actually assertive and the rest have more docile personalities where they get run off by the hens. This might be a phase type of thing. At one point two of my hens were being picked on, no neck feathers and their backs are rough. The head roo has calmed down now and they’re almost completely back to normal. Maybe just give him some time to work himself out.
     
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  8. ChickenTenderKesha

    ChickenTenderKesha Songster

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    That was what I thought I had to do.. do you think if he was the only male in the flock he would stop doing this? Or could this be his personality?
     
  9. ChickenTenderKesha

    ChickenTenderKesha Songster

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    Its only 2 of my pullets that have noticeably missing neck feathers, but I have seen him chasing one of the others. I think the final one is too smart to let him sneak up? She always catches him coming up behind her and takes off before he gets a chance. She’s the quietest of them as well..
    Might I ask your pullet/hen to cockerel/rooster ratio?
     
  10. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler!

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    Only time will tell.
    I can tell you tho that having multiple cockerels brings out all their worst behaviors due to the competition.
    Young cockerels will almost always try to mount pullets before the pullets are ready,
    just how aggressively they do so is an individual thing.
     
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