How can I keep all of my roos?

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by Vadgo, Jun 18, 2009.

  1. Vadgo

    Vadgo In the Brooder

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    Mar 31, 2009
    So I have 20 chickens, and after waiting, I can confirm that I have 2 German Spitz roos, 2 yokohama roos, 1 mottled houdan roo, 1 rose comb banty roo.

    I suspect a RIR banty might be a roo, but not sure, and the speckled sussex (or spangled OEG) that I thought was a roo, I'm not sure anymore (doesn't have a tail yet, so hard to tell).

    I've read that this is way too many roos for the leftover hens. They are all 12 weeks old, and spend most of their day in the coop with the hens, and I've started to let them all out to free range when I get home from work, then shut them in at night.

    Some look too puny to be worth making soup out of them, and I've frankly fallen in love with most of the roos and I'm wondering, is there a way to keep them all? (I will definitely get rid of any that threaten me and can be a threat to my 2 year old). But so far, they are all very gentle, loving, and love to be petted and held.

    When I'm around, I never witness any fighting between them, but the coop is littered with feathers, so I'm assuming when I'm not watching that they are fighting. So far I can't see any injuries in anyone, but they are still fairly young.

    Any suggestions of how to keep them all without buying more hens? If I have to keep all but one separate from the hens, how do you pick the rooster that gets to be with the hens?
    And what sort of housing would the other boys need? Would they allways have to be separated? Can they all free range together during the day? Or free range separate?

    Thanks
     
  2. scbatz33

    scbatz33 No Vacancy, Belfry Full

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    They are getting along ok now because of their age. I had 6 boys and 7 girls all together until they were about 4months old. They started fighting more over the girls and a couple of the girls were getting picked on too much. They are now in separate pens. The girls are just fine and the boys are too for the most part. I have two boys who are obviously at the top of the pecking order and one especially who will show his dominance if the others "step out of line". Of course I am only keeping one of those boys so eventually he will go back in with the girls.

    If you intend on keeping them all, I would keep the boys in a different pen. Yes, they'll fight, but not like they would if there are girls around. IMO.
     
  3. Chickenmaven

    Chickenmaven Songster

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    I know a breeder that keeps a "bachelor pen" until he needs those roos for breeding. That makes sense. I will tell you this: As sweet as they are now, they will change arounge 8 mo. & become very aloof. Their mission is to mate & to guard. Cuddling doesn't figure into this equation.
     
  4. Vadgo

    Vadgo In the Brooder

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    Then I better pet the heck out them now while they let me. [​IMG]

    Does the bachelor pen have to be completely away from view of the hens? Or can it be say a partition of just chicken wire between the hen coop and the bachelor pen?

    Also, do the bachelors get to free range on their own always? Or never free range and in the bachelor pen forever?

    How big does the bachelor pen need to be?
     
  5. scbatz33

    scbatz33 No Vacancy, Belfry Full

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    The pen should be big enough to be comfortable for the number of birds you have. I don't see why you can't free range, but you'd probably not want to do it when your girls are out. So there is a time issue.

    We had a coop where the birds were for the majority of the day and then we had an added wire fence in a big circle around it - just T posts and 2x4 fencing - where they could roam about for an hour or two a day.
     
  6. AWChickens

    AWChickens Songster

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    Adding a rooster pen made this really easy for me- as long as they don't have girls to fight over, they don't seem to fight. And 2 of the ones I added to that pen were over a year and very aggressive in a mixed flock. Now that it 'just the boys', they all get a long. I have 8 roosters of 8 different breeds living in the same coop with a 25' x 15' run and they all get along great.
     

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