Do your roosters get along or do you only keep one per coop?
I am always finding bloody combs and eyes injured. I have to do something. I was just thinking about some individual pens for the roosters. Anyone else dealing with this?
I breed gamefowl and deal with it daily. Most barnyard breeds will establish a pecking order and coexist somewhat peacefully. Not all will. If you are having a problem, either seperate them or send one packing. A good hen/rooster ratio is 10/1, so if you have 10-12 hens, one roo can handle it. More hens than that? pen the roo seperately with the right ratio......P
The hen/rooster ratio is important, how much room they have also enters into the equation, but so does spirit of the roosters. Normally, if the flock is large enough, roosters will determine a pecking order. One will be boss and the other will become his able assistant and both will mate with the hens. Top rooster has his favorites and the assistant defers, but he gets his share. Some breeds, like the Olde English Game, have a lot of spirit and normally will not tolerate another rooster.
Occasionally, you will get two roosters that are evenly matched and will fight to the death to be top man. I'm talking about matched in spirit, not necessarily size. Or you will find two that are so unevenly matched, that the stronger senses the weakness and will kill the weaker, as if top rooster does not want those weak genes in his flock.
Something I saw on this site, if you have two roosters, have two different feeders and waterers. It cuts down on conflict if they each have their own.
Another option is to provide separate housing and alternate which rooster is with the hens.
I often have 3 or 4 roosters in a flock they get along fine. Occasionally I have to separate a rooster when it turns out he just cant tolerate any other males. Mostly, they get along pretty well but I try to keep the ratio of hens high and also to make sure that they have enough space in their pen for the less dominant rooster to get away from the top dog.
I have Black Copper, Cuckoo, Wheaten and Black-tailed Buff Marans. If I allow more than one Roo at a time in with the hens, the Roos try their best to kill each other. However, I have a separate roo pen without hens where they get along fine. Even young and old Roos do fine together without hens.
Just like in the human world, guys get along fine till you introduce a girl into the mix...............
The girls get to spend one day a week with a Roo and this keeps the eggs hatching........
I have all my roos and hens together. More roos than I should have together probably. My older chickens seem to stay together and my first hatch so the male breeds them. All the others I got from a hatchery and raised seem to stick to their own pack. Most of them don't even roost. They just sleep in a pile on the floor. We have lower roosts for them that some will use but not often. I've also noticed most of the same breeds stick together. I have about 6 roos and 17 hens. My main biggest roo (RIR/white leghorn mix) did get attacked by one of the smaller ones where the back of his comb was bleeding some but I haven't seen anymore blood or fighting. I raised him as a chick and held him often and he pecked my leg three times and I chased him around and held him for a while and haven't had any problems with him anymore. So they must all know their places. Also the younger ones don't seem to try to mate as often even though they are old enough. The hens are even laying eggs.
I really enjoy roos. I have a fair collection of little bantam roos. Some of them are just gorgeous. I only have ONE silkie roo now. I do have a few that are a bit bigger than bantam and they get along fine too.
The problem i have is with the BIG roos. The cochin, the leghorn the Jersey giants, the Plymouth rock, the two wild games, the three polish and the Road Island red can and do pose problems.
I have PLENTY of hens and the little ones pretty much stick with the little hens. The half bigs try for both, but rarely get the job done on the big hens so I do not see this much.
The big roos will chase the big hens mostly. Of all the roos, the Road Island Red is the worse. Every RIR roo I have ever had has been a real turd. This one is a NICE rose comb so i am trying to keep him until I can find that special place for him here on BYC.
So, I am formally taking requests for this guy as he is getting fairly nice now and would make a great roo for some one that has RIRs and would like to keep a nice line going. He was a day old from a local hatchery in Springfield MO.
The cochin is not all the active, but he tries. The Leghorn and the Plymouth Rock are VERY active. The polish are some what timid and the games are just territorial and seem to only mate with THEIR wild hens. They are the coolest of ALL the roos.
I do get a bit of blood from the leghorn and the plymouth rocks. The NJGs get into the pecking order quickly and they do not fight near as often as the WPR and LH.
They all stay in the same barn, They eat, drink and roost together. I have never had a fight to the point of one of them getting really hurt.
I saw where some have a sep rooster pen.....now would it drive them crazy to be able to see the hens and not be able to get to them? I'm having the same problem with a few to many roos but don't want to part with the ones I do have. I can serparate them but they will be in the next pen over than my hens, I dont want to be cruel to them, i'd be like a tease.......I don't have enough hens to split everyone up.