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Depressed rooster?

Discussion in 'New Member Introductions' started by Nettihen, Dec 8, 2014.

  1. Nettihen

    Nettihen New Egg

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    Hello everyone.

    I have a small flock of gold laced wyandottes (originally 7...1 rooster, 4 hens and 2 chicks)
    Two mornings ago we had a fox attack to which we got out in the yard in 30 secs. We saw the fox have a snap at the rooster (feathers flying) but my husband chased it off before it could do any real damage. The matriarch hen was wounded slightly and unfortunately we lost her later that day. The rest of the flock were okay. Since the horrible event Topaz (the roo) has been very quiet, I saw him sitting in the nesting box yesterday and has been generally moping around. He's eating and drinking but certainly not his normal cocky self. He's been to the vet today and she could find no signs of a bite or wound, no temperature, he's had antibiotics just in case (and continues to have then). He looks really really depressed, just standing in the pen. He is only a year old and the matriarch was his adoptive mother (she hatched him and two of the other pullets from some bought fertilised eggs). He and his 'mother' hung out together ALL the time and ruled the yard. The two pullets (his sisters) did their own thing as did the older hen with the two chicks. They are all in the same huge pen together and seem back to normal except the roo.

    Has anyone had experience with a depressed rooster that's lost his matey. It's really sad to see him like this. He may also be still stressed as he was very close to getting his head bitten off by the fox and he was only a few metres from where his mother was laying hurt.
     
  2. drumstick diva

    drumstick diva Still crazy after all these years. Premium Member

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    He has every right to be depressed, anxious, scared. Chickens do form some close attachments to others and miss them when they are gone. But he also had the scare of his lifetime. Sometimes survivors even go into shock.

    Do you know how the predator got in so you can shore up the coop/runs to prevent it from happening again? Meanwhile if you can lessen some stress for your rooster, like no barking dogs, or other controllable annoyances, it will help him get back to normal sooner. If he is normally a human sociable type, you may want to spend more time with him to help him get his confidence security back.
     
  3. drumstick diva

    drumstick diva Still crazy after all these years. Premium Member

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    I do have to mention foxes and other predators will keep coming back - once they have been successful / know where your flock is. Are you allowed to shoot them? You won't get them all but, at least you know some will NEVER be back. Maybe you are also allowed to use electrified fencing - to persuade predators to visit someone else.
     
  4. Nettihen

    Nettihen New Egg

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    Yes, we found the problem spot and it's all fixed and predator proof now. They now have a fully enclosed pen (wired roof n all) inside an outer bigger pen with over 6ft fences (The fox did come back skulking around in the paddock behind again the very next morning too! The older hen alerted us). It didn't come today, probably something to do with my husband throwing a tomahawk at it yesterday.
    I'm not a fan of guns so I'm getting a humane fox trap from the council to see if we can catch it, then I'll take it to the ranger to be euthanised.
    We don't have a dog, it's pretty quiet here except for the native birds.
    I've no doubt he got the fright of his life! Poor bugger
     
  5. Michael OShay

    Michael OShay Chicken Obsessed

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    Welcome to BYC! Glad you decided to join our flock. I'm sorry you lost your hen to a fox, but I'm glad you were able to fix the problem spot where the fox was able to gain entry. Your rooster has had quite a shock, but given time he should recover. Are there any other predatory animals that are found in your area? If so, you should also make sure that your enclosure is predator proof against them as well. There's a good article on predator proofing your chickens at https://www.google.com/?gws_rd=ssl#q=predator+proofing+chicken+coop. Please feel free to ask any other questions you may have. We are here to help in any way we can. Good luck in protecting your flock from predators.
     
  6. sumi

    sumi Égalité Staff Member

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    Welcome to BYC [​IMG] So sorry to hear about your loss. I agree with Drumstick diva, he is most likely in shock and missing his buddy. Some extra attention and treats from you should be appreciated at this time and maybe a new hen friend to replace the old one and distract him? Best of luck with the fox!
     
  7. Nettihen

    Nettihen New Egg

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    No other predators, all the other animals in the area are kangaroos and such. It's too cool for snakes mostly as well.
    He's getting all his favourite treats like watermelon, strawberries and sunflower seeds too. He's eating them but without his usual 'gawwwwrrrr' (in Aussie that's the sound he makes when he gets excited about treats) which brings the girls running over. The other girls are in with him but he's just hanging by himself. I've been checking on him every now and again, just sitting with him for a while.
     
  8. Mountain Peeps

    Mountain Peeps Change is inevitable, like the seasons Premium Member

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    Welcome to BYC! Please make yourself at home and we are here to help.
     
  9. BantamLover21

    BantamLover21 Overrun With Chickens

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    [​IMG] Glad you joined us!
     
  10. TwoCrows

    TwoCrows Show me the way old friend... Staff Member

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    Hello there and welcome to BYC! [​IMG]

    Yes, they do miss their buddies and know they are gone. I recently lost a hen to heart failure about 2 weeks ago and her best buddy is still looking for her. She sat on the roost bar for a few days and was really depressed. She is constantly fighting with the other hens. She just misses her buddy so much. So yes, they do recognize the loss and it takes them time to get over and grieve just as you might.

    I hope he heals up soon. Oh, and so sorry for your loss to the fox. [​IMG] Never easy to lose them no matter how they go.
     

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