Effect of removing the rooster from the flock

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by commishT, Oct 14, 2012.

  1. commishT

    commishT Hatching

    Sep 5, 2011
    After 18 months with the flock, we recently caught and butchered the rooster, as he had become VERY aggressive, and you could barely enter the chicken house or run without being armed with a plastic baseball bat. Since then (about a month ago), the remaining 9 hens have almost stopped laying. Where we would get 5-7 eggs daily, we now get 1-3. They are in a completely enclosed barn and run, so there are no predators or other environmental changes, other than they no longer have a rooster. These are not our pets - we don't handle them. Could it be that the loss of their masculine protector had a bigger effect on them than we contemplated? We are considering looking for another rooster that is less aggressive, but think that we might get duped by someone that is trying to just unload a problem rooster. We have 3 barred rocks, 4 RIRs and 2 EEs. Thanks for any suggestions.

  2. HEChicken

    HEChicken Crowing

    Aug 12, 2009
    BuCo, KS
    My Coop
    It is possible you are attributing more weight to the loss of the rooster than is warranted. Given the time of year, it is likely some or all of your hens are in molt and therefore won't lay for several weeks. Especially if they are more than a year old, I would guess that is the reason, since they typically conduct their first molt in the Fall after they season in which they first start to lay, and every fall thereafter. Hens don't need a rooster to lay, and many people have reported their hens were happier when a bad rooster was removed from the flock, so I would lean more towards molt (plus the shorter days) being the reason. You may find that eggs are scant over the winter but as the days get longer and the hens complete their molt, they will get back in the swing of things in the Spring.
  3. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

    Jun 18, 2010
    Southern Oregon
    I agree, it's probably not related. If your birds are 18 months or so, they'll be starting a molt and taking a break anyway. My spring '11 girls are slacking way off the last few weeks.
  4. off-grid hen

    off-grid hen Songster

    Mar 1, 2011
    Upstate NY
    When I got rid of my nasty roo last year, I saw an INCREASE in egg production due to the loss of stress. But they were in their first year of laying, so they weren't molting.

    Your girls are also probably slowing down due to reduction in daylight hours. With the molt plus less light, I'm only getting 5 eggs a day for a few days now. I hope they get over the molt quickly!

    Good luck with your chickens.
  5. Ashley & Donna Dame

    Ashley & Donna Dame Chirping

    Aug 11, 2017
    0909170832.jpg We have moved every hen and a silkie roo into the other coop and closed in run. The two easter egger roosters were being very rough with the hens and they were hiding on top of the coop. Then they started inflicting the torment to the silkie rooster. Now they are by themselves but today one attacked our 8 year old daughter. He had been dancing around me at times as well but her more so. We are not sure where the behavior is coming from. It's very distressing to feel as though you need to walk with a stick in hand and watch over your shoulder. They are about 7 months old now.

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