Culled the 'head honcho rooster' along with 2 young ones....saved one young one to take over....

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by Malissa, Nov 17, 2013.

  1. Malissa

    Malissa Chillin' With My Peeps

    98
    8
    89
    Jan 4, 2012
    I've had a busy weekend. We started our flock with 6 original birds. Got a miss sexed male in the bunch. He was a good roo, but had issues with me and I was attacked daily with all out floggings and charges across the yard. What sealed his fate was we let a broody hatch some eggs and we ended up with all 3 babies being male. So here we sat with 3 teenage roos and 1 mean older one. I am fortunate to live down the street from an Old Order Mennonite farm and befriended the children. The mom agreed to teach me to butcher so I decided to cull the jerk and 2 of the babies. The 3 babies were just getting into puperty and we've been hearing them crow here and there and they would all fight each other. (the big jerk, however, never got involved with their quarrels....he saved his aggression for me!) Friday was the big day and Lila the jerk along with Matilda and Raven (we were REALLY hoping for girls!) are now in my freezer. ((stop by my blog for details on that! Link below!)) Anyway, we chose to keep Sid Viscious. He is of Faverolles decent and is colored like a Salmon Faverolles. He's quite pretty and timid as all the babies were. They've been afraid of the hens and usually flock separately from the gang. Now he's alone with his girls. He seems to be stepping up, like when the neighbors kitten starts attacking them. I hear him send out alert calls. I wish he'd flog the cat, but he runs away. He does not make the little calls to get the girls to follow him and tends to wander off alone leaving the girls. He did hop up on the roost bar last night but picked the back bar with 3 of the girls and the 2 barred rocks were on the front bar (to me, the barred rocks tend to rule the flock and seeing them on the front bar is where Lila always sat with his chosen top of the flock girls). Can I expect him to 'take over' ruling the flock or is it possible he will continue to be intimidated by the high ranking hens? I will cheer the day I see him mounting one! Also, he really is not crowing alot. We heard him while Lila was still in the picture, and the other day, my daughter crowed to him and he replied. It's weird not hearing him in the morning as that is one of the things I miss about the jerk! hahaha Here's hoping Sid steps up! Any advice or thoughts welcome!

    Malissa
    mothercluckerhomegrown.blogspot.com
     
  2. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

    32,852
    5,608
    556
    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop
    Did the nasty roo father the younger roos? If so, they may have inherited his nastiness.
    Only time will tell.
     
  3. bobbi-j

    bobbi-j Chicken Obsessed

    8,243
    2,274
    421
    Mar 15, 2010
    On the MN prairie.
    How old is he? If he was just hatched this summer, he's most likely not mature enough to be the boss yet. My current rooster was just hatched in early May, and has just recently started mounting the hens, showing his authority and doing other roosterly things like calling them for treats. His father (the one in my avatar) got eaten by what we're sure was a coyote in July. Just yesterday I saw my rooster chase down one of the oldest hens, breed her, then chase her again until she squatted. He didn't mount her again, but kept circling her, dragging his wings while she sat there on the ground, then walked away. I think he was just establishing his dominance. When he was first attempting to mount the hens, this one would chase him away all the time. I think with time your boy will start doing his job. But watch your back for awhile until you've determined whether or not he's inherited his father's aggressiveness.
     
  4. Malissa

    Malissa Chillin' With My Peeps

    98
    8
    89
    Jan 4, 2012
    We only hatched one offspring of our mean roo....I crossed him (welsummer) with the barred rock and got a male...but he was killed by the others when he was a month old. I brooded him solo so he never bonded with any of the chickens and the mom was sitting on the other eggs which I put under her 2 weeks later. I was def worried about him being mean even though he cuddled under my neck when he was scared as a chick. We are 4 males for 4 hatches and I'm determined to buy sexed chicks next year and leave mother nature out of the loop! hahaha The 3 that hatched 2 weeks after the first I bought from someone else because keeping the same gene pool was kind of creepy! So the 2 I culled were both Ameraucana (not pure because they had lots of patterns on their heads and neck) and then this faverolles mix who has the frizzle gene but does not show it much. THey all came out of blue eggs and that is what we were hoping to get from hens! :( He was hatched in early May so yes, he is still young. With the dominant roo, I expected the babies to keep their maleness on the D.L. Only in the last week or so have we seen the 3 fighting for dominance between themselves and catching them crowing here and there. Definitely made the right call by thinning the flock. These boys would be trouble had we tried to live with all 4!
     
  5. Malissa

    Malissa Chillin' With My Peeps

    98
    8
    89
    Jan 4, 2012
    Wanted to update. Sid Vicious is still SCARED of his girls! Poor thing. He usually is foraging far from the girls and at night, even after I put him on a roost bar with the girls, he ends up sitting on the edge of a nest box pooping in it all night! GRRR. I wish he'd make friends! The girls do peck at him and he backs down and runs. He spends most of the day perched high up on the coop eave far away from the girls. He is inconsitant with his crowing, but we do hear him and some mornings he's more vocal than others. I will cheer when I catch him mating, but at this point, I doubt that will happen!!
     
  6. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

    31,452
    3,522
    538
    Jun 18, 2010
    Southern Oregon
    I still don't see how old he is?

    My roosters hatched in late May and June are also not ready to be leaders, my older hens chase their little butts all over the coop. Even at this age, they're still juveniles and not sure of themselves, IME especially with older, mature hens. Those hens have been with a mature rooster and are determined to make the young guys prove themselves.

    I culled my three top roosters maybe 2 months ago, leaving Omega who was a summer 2012 hatch as the only rooster. He's old enough, over a year, but it's taken him pretty much this entire time to step up and be the big guy. Sometimes it just takes a while. I'm currently reviewing who's going to be in the flock and in the freezer, not sure if Omega will make it or not as I have 7 young guns to look at, also.
     
    Last edited: Nov 23, 2013
  7. Mrs. K

    Mrs. K Overrun With Chickens

    4,616
    1,167
    356
    Nov 12, 2009
    western South Dakota
    I have found that it really takes a rooster to be nearly a year old before they get all the glory. With my best roo, Captain, from the day he turned a year old, he was top man, the girls adored him, and my day time predators loss disappeared. Had for nearly 3 years, when something got him, a sad day.

    Now, I have this totally un-researched theory, that a chick raised up in a flock, by older hens, has better manners. And he does not get to be top dog, during the horrible 'teen-age' part. If there are only same age pullets in the flock, he quickly out grows them, and can often becomes a bully. But just last week, my skinny old molting leghorn was educating my 5+ month old Delaware rooster, and he is close to 3 times the size of her. I have two roosters at that age, and they have been raised under a broody within the flock. There are pullets that are their age, but the dominant girls in the flock are older. So far, both are turning into nice roosters, but neither are acting like flock masters yet or really showing much rooster behavior.

    I am only planning on keeping one rooster...... I have been saying that since July....... just not quite sure which way I am going....wanted to keep a nice one.

    Anyway, another 6 months and there will be a change. Good luck, that is what the hard part of roosters are, you really have to wait a long time, and put a lot into them before you know how it is going to work. After this long summer of heavy predator losses, as I had to dispatch my rooster that was not working out, and leaving my flock rooless, and very open to predator losses. I am secretly toying with the idea of keeping ...... no, I really can only have one roo.

    Mrs K
     
  8. Malissa

    Malissa Chillin' With My Peeps

    98
    8
    89
    Jan 4, 2012
    THanks for the insight!!! He was born this past May, so yes, he is still relatively young. The glimmer of leadership he displays at times has me hopeful! Our mean Roo had a year on him and was raised with these hens (mis-sexed chick). He hated me. He never fought with the babies though. They were raised by a broody, but I had them in a separate cage when they weren't out free ranging. The mom ditched them after about a month. Then the 3 boys pretty much hung out together away from the mean hens. hahaha Well, sounds like time will work this out. He's beautiful....colored like a Salmon Favorelles (He is mixed, though with Ameraucana as he came out of a blue egg!) My roos seem to reinforce your theory...so far. Raised with hens as chicks...big bully. Brooded with hens, seem to be nicer so far. Hope he stays that way!!!!
     
  9. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

    31,452
    3,522
    538
    Jun 18, 2010
    Southern Oregon
    I'd second Mrs K's theory all the way. It's what I've seen in my own flock. Older hens don't take the crap, especially if they've been with a mature rooster before. Then, those young guys have to EARN their place, and sometimes it takes a while.
     
  10. Malissa

    Malissa Chillin' With My Peeps

    98
    8
    89
    Jan 4, 2012
    Well! Interesting enough, I used up all my reserve eggs baking for christmas and I've still got girls on strike due to winter and molt so we've been getting only 1 or 2 eggs a day. The 5 I had today were all laid over the last 5 days. FERTILE! They have bulls eyes on them! I found unfertile eggs in my old stash which made me sad. We caught Sid dancing for one of the girls last week, but have not seen him on any of them. He's a sneaky little roo!!!!! Still afraid of the girls most of the time, but we have noticed him on the roost bars more recently.
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by