So we have 27 hens and 12 roosters. We'd like to keep 2 or 3 of the roosters to help guard the hens from hawks etc. as they range in a large open yard all the time. Although they are only about 15 weeks old, we've already seen some impressive behavior - standing guard around the edge of the flock, and in one case doing the fluff-up-and-scream thing when a hawk came by. But we also see a lot of mean-looking behavior: grabbing the hens by the back of the neck and holding them, while the hen screams bloody murder! They don't seem to be trying to mount, just biting. Is that a sign of a "bad" rooster that won't be good with the hens? The roos are a mixed bunch: 6 Delawares, 2 Sussex, 2 Orpingtons, 1 New Hampshire, and 1 Partidge Rock. The gentlest dispositions so far seem to be the Rock, the Sussex, and some of the Delawares. At the other extreme, two of the Dels are pure white (and noticeably larger), and they have been doing most of the neck-grabbing. But it was one of those that faced the chicken hawk, so... What do you look for in a young rooster, to decide which ones will be good with the flock and also courageous defenders? Or do you have to accept some meanness to get that fearlessness?