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Dealing w/ a Rooster

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by pawsplus, Sep 20, 2011.

  1. pawsplus

    pawsplus Chillin' With My Peeps

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    So based on this thread ( https://www.backyardchickens.com/forum/viewtopic.php?id=544076 , see p. 2 and following), apparently my Bianca is a Bianco (or a Bjorn or a Benjamin--haven't settled on a new name yet).

    I'm greatly upset about all this b/c I'm not set up for a rooster. I have 3 girls, one of whom is 8 years old and used to BEING the rooster. She's very alpha and doesn't put up w/ being told what to do. 3 hens is also not enough for one roo and I do NOT want my girls constantly harrassed (that's the PG version). <sigh>

    I have a call in to my vet to ask about neutering/caponizing. I will also ask about estrogen implants, which I see are sometimes used. Has anyone done that?

    What are my other options? Other than returning him b/c I won't do that--he would end up dead in no time and I'm already committed to him. I have 2 pens next to each other--I COULD keep him in one and the girls in the other but it seems that he would be so frustrated and upset all the time, which seems beyond mean to do to him. [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Sep 20, 2011
  2. Kountreefok

    Kountreefok Chillin' With My Peeps

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    [​IMG] More hens...? [​IMG]
     
  3. KarenP

    KarenP Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I agree, get him some of his own girls!! I love roosters!!
     
  4. dainerra

    dainerra Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:not all roosters will be too "active" for 3 hens. It really depends on the individual birds. At least 5 hens would be better, of course.

    As for your alpha hen, it is entirely possible that she would be happy to hand off the duties to a rooster. I have a hen that is super-bossy to all the other ladies, but very submissive when there is a rooster around.
     
  5. ReikiStar

    ReikiStar Chillin' With My Peeps

    I think you're smart to consider your Alpha Hen's feelings. She might NOT want to defer to him. I have an Alpha hen and I could see she was REALLY upset when the boys started acting like such. We keep our roosters in their own coop and run. If he's a gentleman, you might be able to have a favorite hen or two live with him, but finding out if he's going to go easy on the girls means putting them, potentially, in harms way first. You could try keeping his living quarters side by side with them and see if he doesn't learn to live like that. Our boys grew up together so they have each other. One roo by himself could be lonely.

    And thank you for keeping him. Roos need love too!
     
    Last edited: Sep 20, 2011
  6. pawsplus

    pawsplus Chillin' With My Peeps

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    NOT getting more chickens. That's just not an option. I care for mine as pets, which means a substantial financial commitment (vet care in particular). I can't make that commitment to umpty-million chickens!

    Still waiting to hear from the vet.

    By what age are they 100% sexually active? I.e., at what point will he start driving Audrey (w/ whom he is currently housed) nuts?
     
  7. Blessedchickens

    Blessedchickens Out Of The Brooder

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    Quote:Depends on the breed, I have heard 12 weeks for most roos. Standards are later than bantams. Just FYI I had the same issue with a bossy hen. I introduced a new roo to my very established flock of girls. The bossy hen, who had been in the roo position for a while and the roo bumped chests, did the roo stand off with lowered heads and fluffed neck feathers and HE walked away. Hilarious. But they seem very peaceful now. He was on the edge of the flock a lot at first and then kind of just blended in. I would say you are right about asking the vet about what your options are. I have one roo to three hens in Bantam Cochins and I need another hen or two. They really well together though and he does really take care of them. It is endearing how he calls them over when he thinks he finds a tasty treat and does not eat it himself. And calls out a warning when danger is near, such as hawks or cats or anything. They are actually pretty cool. By the way one or two more hens is not very many more to take care of in terms of feed. Vet bills yes, but there a lot of things you can do yourself to keep them healthy and lessen the vet bill.
     
  8. Judy

    Judy Moderator Staff Member

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    I would try him with the girls, myself, though maybe wait a few weeks. My "teenagers' (around 12-16 weeks) have been a bit rough on the girls at first, when the hormones first kicked in, but many settled down. Remember, lots of folks keep breeding pairs or trios. They are such individuals, you just never know, just as your lead hen may love giving up her role or may hate it -- she may also keep him in line.
     
  9. pawsplus

    pawsplus Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Well, he's 13-14 weeks old now and other than occasional scuffles over food, he and Audrey are acting just fine together. Like hens, in fact. Maybe I'll get lucky and he's a wimp????

    Things have settled down at the common fence--Clarice no longer patrols it ALL the time w/ blood in her eye, at least. I was watching yesterday evening, though, and Bianco (his new name) DOES spend a lot of time gazing adoringly over at the big girls. <sigh>
     
  10. pawsplus

    pawsplus Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Just counted and he and Audrey are 15 weeks old now. So if he's gonna be horrible that should happen soon? Is he less likely to try to mate w/ Audrey since she's also young?
     

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