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Hens suffering from overzealous rooster

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by BCMominMD, Jul 15, 2010.

  1. BCMominMD

    BCMominMD Songster

    Mar 12, 2009
    Southern Md
    I have 10 hens and 1 white rock rooster. He is a little over a year old and his spurs have grown to about an inch. Half the girls are looking pretty ragged with bald backs & back of head , a few w/bald wingtops. This wasn't a problem last summer. They free range in the backyard most days - woods and lots of forage. They have a nice big coop/shed and a big run. Would it help if I somehow managed to capture the roo and cut the spurs? He's a tough guy but he keeps a sharp eye out for the girls and I've never lost one to hawks or anything like that. Do I need to outfit my hens in saddles or duct tape? Am I a bad owner if I do nothing? I take great satisfaction out taking good care of all my animals. They all look healthy and the coop and barn are clean and fresh. The poor hens just make me feel bad.
  2. mmaddie's mom

    mmaddie's mom Songster

    I see pictures of beautiful hens on here and then I look at mine... I, too, try to take good care of them and provide the best... but I do have 2 Roos and my birds are free range... was wondering if those 2 things are why my birds aren't picture perfect? I think they are healthy and happy, but they do look a bit used. [​IMG]
  3. dawg53

    dawg53 Humble Premium Member 9 Years

    Nov 27, 2008
    Jacksonville, Florida
    We all go through this with roosters when they are able to breed with the hens. I recommend you purchase saddles or aprons for your hens. You can also remove the spurs from your rooster. The easiest way I've done it is to bake a potato in the microwave. With an oven glove on, take the hot potato and put it on the spur. Leave the potato on the spur for one minute, dont let the hot potato touch his leg. After 1 minute remove the potato and use your pliers to easily pull off the spur. Repeat with the spur on his other leg. Once you're done, wipe both spurs off with betadine or weak iodine solution. What's left is a smaller spur which is bone. I never cut that off as if didnt affect my hens during mating and they were wearing saddles. Hope this helps. Oops, I forgot to add that you can give the potato to him afterwards, cooled of course. He'll love you for it.
    Last edited: Jul 15, 2010
  4. MotherJean

    MotherJean Songster

    [​IMG] [​IMG] Dawg53 is a wellspring of good info. Bookmarking this info just in case I take leave of my senses and acquire a Roo. And, yes, I would make sure he got the potato as a trade in credit for his spurs [​IMG]

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