1. If this is your first time on BYC, we suggest you start with one of these three options:
    Raising Chickens Chicken Coops Join BYC
    If you're already a member of our community, click here to login & click here to learn what's new!

hens getting roughes up by roos

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by StonyCreekCC, Dec 17, 2013.

  1. StonyCreekCC

    StonyCreekCC Out Of The Brooder

    51
    0
    29
    May 28, 2012
    Stony Creek, VA
    I have 23 hens and 2 roosters. Recently I've noticed that the majority of my girls have small bald patches on the back of their heads. What can I do to help my girls from getting roughed up by my roos?
     
  2. Kelsie2290

    Kelsie2290 True BYC Addict Premium Member

    36,684
    4,692
    566
    Feb 18, 2011
    Ohio
    If you want to keep the roos, the easiest thing to do is probably separating them from the hens for a while. Either let them out for a time each day, or every couple of days. Are they young? Young roos tend to be overly amorous and take awhile to get their technique down, as they get more experienced they often will stop messing up the hens as much, and settle down. You also might want to watch and see if you can tell if it is one roo being rough or if they both are.
     
  3. StonyCreekCC

    StonyCreekCC Out Of The Brooder

    51
    0
    29
    May 28, 2012
    Stony Creek, VA
    Thank you so much for your input!
     
  4. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

    31,452
    3,522
    538
    Jun 18, 2010
    Southern Oregon
    Little bald patches on the back of the head are a normal thing for a hen that lives with roosters, especially for younger birds. Older hens seem to toughen up the skin there and older roosters have better technique, so less feather loss. It doesn't harm the hens as long as the skin is intact.
     
  5. Happy Chooks

    Happy Chooks Moderator Staff Member

    39,645
    1,174
    516
    Jul 9, 2009
    Northern CA
    My Coop
    How old are your roosters? If they are young, they may be a bit overzealous right now. As they age, they get better at mating and relax more. With that said, some roosters are harder on the hens than others.
     
  6. StonyCreekCC

    StonyCreekCC Out Of The Brooder

    51
    0
    29
    May 28, 2012
    Stony Creek, VA
    Everyone is under 1 year. The roosters are maybe a couple weeks-1 month older than the hens.

    Thanks everyone. Glad to know everything is normal. I did pull out one hen that was getting beat up by every one. She's set up in a small shed type thing I have with a makeshift run attached to it. Once her feathers grow back completely she'll probably be given to my in-laws. They have a smaller flock and they free range. Sometimes I feel bad for keeping mine penned up but they are definitely safer from all the stray dogs, coyotes, and bobcats we have in the area.
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by