Cockerel Timeout


In the Brooder
Jun 28, 2020
Our flock of 20 has two 5-month old cockerels - an exchequer leghorn and a silkie - who we keep around for entertainment and predator protection/coyote bait. They grew up together and get along okay; the leghorn is definitely dominant, but they coexist just fine and there have been no fights at all. Our leghorn cockerel is currently in a timeout after singling out and attacking one particular hen in our flock; he’s a favorite of ours and a gentleman to all the other ladies, so we’re going to give him one chance at rooster rehab before condemning him to freezer camp. Our plan is to separate him in a dog crate in the house/garage for a period of time until the rest of the flock “forgets” him so he has to reestablish himself in the pecking order.

My questions are these: how long is a good amount of time to separate him? A week? Two weeks? A month? Secondly, by only pulling him out of the flock, are we going to have cockerel fights on our hands when we reintroduce him? I’m okay with the ladies putting him in his place upon his return, but there’s no way our pint-sized silkie will be able to hold his own against the big leghorn. I’m totally fine with the silkie going back to playing second fiddle, but I don’t want a battle royale between the two of them. Should I be separating them both from the flock instead of just one? Or am I overthinking this?


Folly's place

Sep 13, 2011
southern Michigan
I'd worry too about that Silkie cockerel, although with cockerels, any time can be a good time to behave badly.
If you have plenty of space, separated feeder and waterer stations, and out of sight places, things may work out. If he's injuring pullets, he'd be out here.

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