First time with a roo...

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by mikey1957, Nov 18, 2016.

  1. mikey1957

    mikey1957 Just Hatched

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    I have never had a roo before. This was a mistake at the hatchery! However, by the time I realized it I had become very attached to him. My question: Since I never had one before and he has now reached maturity...I am not sure if he is bullying or mating. Just how long does a mate last and if the hen is very resistant will he hurt her. I watched him with one of my hens who tried to fight him off and her started pecking her head and even drew a small amount of blood before I stopped him. He was very mad at me and stomped off ruffling his feathers, He is very gentle with people although he doesn't like to be touched. He hasn't tried to mate with the hens that he has been with since I got them all as chicks only with the older chickens that I have.
     
  2. bobbi-j

    bobbi-j Chicken Obsessed

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    [​IMG]

    Taken from Ridgerunner's response in this thread: https://www.backyardchickens.com/t/1141724/how-long#post_17763470


    "The rooster dances for a specific hen. He lowers one wing and sort of circles her. This signals his intent.

    The hen squats. This gets her body onto the ground so the rooster’s weight goes into the ground through her entire body and not just her legs. That way she can support a much heavier rooster without hurting her legs.

    The rooster hops on and grabs the back of her head. The head grab helps him get in the right position to hit the target and helps him to keep his balance, but its major purpose is to tell the hen to raise her tail out of the way to expose the target. A mating will not be successful if she does not raise her tail and expose the target. The head grab is necessary.

    The rooster touches vents and hops off. This may be over in the blink of an eye or it may take a few seconds. But when this is over the rooster’s part is done.

    The hen then stands up, fluffs up, and shakes. This fluffy shake gets the sperm into a special container inside the hen near where the egg starts its internal journey through her internal egg making factory."


    Have the pullets you got with your cockerel (rooster younger than 1 year of age) started laying yet? Generally, they won't mate with pullets that aren't laying yet.
     
  3. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    Usually a cockerel just coming into sexual maturity(4-5 months old) will try to mate everything.
    It's a good sign that he'not trying to mate the pullet not laying yet.
    He'll have to earn his place with the older hens...they usually won't submit to him right away.

    If he takes the 'rejection' well...and doesn't keep going at them, leave them to work it out.
    If he won't stop harassing them it may be a good idea to seclude him for a time.
     
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  4. mikey1957

    mikey1957 Just Hatched

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    The pullets I got with him have not started laying yet. I think the issue that I am having is that he doesn't have enough hens to satisfy himself. My leghorns are too fast so he only has 2 hens available until the others are of age so he is really stressing the two out.
     
  5. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    He's the same age as pullets....maybe 4 months old?
    He's not trying to mount the pullets?
    If so, he just doesn't know how.....young cockerels frequently have very little sense.
     
  6. mikey1957

    mikey1957 Just Hatched

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    5 months old for the pullets but not laying yet. Rooster is also 5 months old too. The pullets are 2 Brahmas and a barred rock
    Roo is a barred rock. Brahman may not lay for a couple of months yet and the barred rock is small for a 5 month old chicken. Rooster is harassing an 18 month old RIR and an 18 month old buff orpington.
     
  7. bobbi-j

    bobbi-j Chicken Obsessed

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    He's acting like a typical cockerel. He's full of raging hormones, and does't quite know what to do with himself. He knows he's supposed to do something, and that something has to do with breeding, but he hasn't learned manners or finesse yet. Those older girls will likely put him in his place until he's earned the right (in their opinion) to mate with them. Unless he is causing serious injury, I'd let them work it out. If he's causing harm, you could separate him until he settles down in a few months, but then you'd have the whole integration thing to deal with.
     
  8. mikey1957

    mikey1957 Just Hatched

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    Thank you for your help. This is a great site with great people. I will just watch him for awhile and make sure he doesn't hurt them. He is really good at keeping watch over the "girls" and keeping them out of trouble.
     
  9. bobbi-j

    bobbi-j Chicken Obsessed

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    It can look pretty rough - especially when it's a young cockerel, learning what to do, and the older girls decide to teach them some manners. It will smooth out over time.
     

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