How many hens can I have without a rooster?

Camille13

In the Brooder
10 Years
May 1, 2009
19
0
22
I am just curious if anyone has any experience with a larger flock without a rooster. I have 7 full grown laying hens, one broody that is taking care of 4 chicks(I am pretty sure one is a rooster already, due to comb development), and 4 7 week old chicks. I don't think we can have roosters where we live, and I don't want to get woken up by one. My kids already do that!
Right now I have the 4, 7 week old chicks in their own coop, and want to move the coop within the run (it is a big run, technically big enough for 30 chickens) but don't know if this will bring chaos to a calm crowd. The mama and babies all get along, thanks to the good mama. No one pecks anyone's feathers, and they are currently happy and beautiful. Should I not mess with a good thing? The coop in the run is technically big enough for 14 birds, but I never planned on more than 10. Just thought they would like the room.
 

gryeyes

Covered in Pet Hair & Feathers
10 Years
Sep 22, 2009
15,506
384
358
My slice of heaven in Somerset, CA
You can have a flock of HUNDREDS of hens without a rooster. Unless you want chicks from them, or fertilized eggs for some other reason, you don't need a rooster at all for an egg-laying business.
 

vstoltzfus

Songster
10 Years
Aug 10, 2009
199
4
111
Lancaster County, PA
As the previous poster said, you don't need a rooster at all to get eggs. A rooster will certainly change the dynamics of your flock. Was there a particular reason you want/thought you need a rooster?
 

Camille13

In the Brooder
10 Years
May 1, 2009
19
0
22
I thought I had heard that after about 10 hens you needed a rooster to establish the pecking order. Is this not true? I am definitely not worried about fertilized eggs, and my hens so far seem quite content without a rooster. I also don't want one due to the noise. This would simplify my chicken life drastically! THanks!
 
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gryeyes

Covered in Pet Hair & Feathers
10 Years
Sep 22, 2009
15,506
384
358
My slice of heaven in Somerset, CA
Ahh, you got the idea slightly wrong. IF you want to get fertilized eggs, you need a rooster for around every 10 hens.

Pecking order will be established within your flock of hens just fine without a rooster.
 
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acid_chipmunk

Polish Silkies d'Uccles O my!
9 Years
Mar 29, 2010
4,708
12
211
They will establish a pecking order with or without a rooster. They start doing this as chicks.

And, I understand what you mean about the rooster. I couldn't take mine anymore and he went to freezer camp!
 

TM Chickens

Songster
11 Years
Mar 3, 2008
1,013
0
169
Alabama
Me & My Peeps :

Quote:Translated that means; " Left on their own, females will work it out by arguing amongst themselves
"

 

Camille13

In the Brooder
10 Years
May 1, 2009
19
0
22
Thanks everyone for the good and humorous advice! I know, relativity speaking 15 chickens isn't that many, but I live on a 10th of an acre lot in a densely packed mountain community. I am not even sure if I am allowed to have chickens! But lots of people do, and no one would ever complain, and we are on the end of town. So, I think I am going to try integrating all of them into one flock. Thanks!
 

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