How many hens to rooster ratio?

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by GalloNegrito, May 30, 2016.

  1. GalloNegrito

    GalloNegrito Out Of The Brooder

    Apr 20, 2016
    I've heard that you're supposed to have a 1/8-12 rooster/hen ratio to avoid a hen from being too over breeded.

    But I'm thinking of probably just getting 4 for each rooster.
  2. sourland

    sourland Broody Magician Premium Member

    May 3, 2009
    New Jersey
    A lot depends upon the breed and there are also individual variations within the breed. Some people pair, trio, or quad breed with little wear or tear on the hen. Really large and clumsy roosters tend to cause the most problems.
  3. chickens really

    chickens really Chicken Obsessed

    One Rooster for 10 hens! More hens the better!
    He will breed them all about 15 times a day!
  4. Pork Pie Ken

    Pork Pie Ken Monkey Business Premium Member

    Jan 30, 2015
    Africa - near the equator
    Sourland has given you some sound advice. If you are intending keeping the roos together as part of the flock, then fighting will undoubtedly ensue. If you are intending breeding (and i am assuming that each of your four sets of girls are different breeds), then keeping each roo in a separate coop / run and having all the girls together as a flock would allow you to select which girls to mate with the roo of your choice and when.

  5. Gnarled Carrots

    Gnarled Carrots Out Of The Brooder

    Feb 17, 2016
    Roosters will intend to breed at nauseam and your hens will not appreciate it! With small flocks, you can get away with one rooster for as little as 4 hens. However, if you have 2 roosters and 8 hens, they won't be happy. The roosters will fight (a lot) and the hens will have more attention than they want.

    A couple years ago I had 2 bantam roosters, 1 bantam hen, and 3 standard hens. Even with the smaller roosters having 2 in a flock of 6 was too many! After less than a year we had to get rid of a rooster.
  6. lazy gardener

    lazy gardener Flock Master

    Nov 7, 2012
    I have one roo covering 24 hens. Even with that ratio, the fertility is good. And his favorite gals are starting to show bare backs. He's a busy boy, 2 years old.

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