how to introduce a new rooster

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by folly foot, Jan 25, 2017.

  1. folly foot

    folly foot Out Of The Brooder

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    Sep 28, 2016
    So I have a flock of around 25 hens and used to have two roosters up until 2 monthes ago when my favorite was snatched up by a predator :'( I haven't been able to bring myself to get a new one until recently after seeing how overwhelmed my one roo is. He is only able to handle a few of my hens... we were hope to hatch some this spring but we don't even know what ones are fertilised or not.... any advice? We just purchased a new boy we will be picking up Friday.
     
    Last edited: Jan 25, 2017
  2. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Lots of Chickens Premium Member

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    Quarantine can be a good thing initially. Otherwise I pen the rooster inside the coop before I try releasing him. I personally do this in the dark days of winter when hormones are at their lowest, and the rooster is penned for months. I also have lots of room and places for a rooster to get away, in confinement you will have troubles.

    This time of year you are going to have troubles because hormones are now surging and roosters are feeling feisty. It's always best to raise roosters in the flock so they grow up and usually take their place below the mature roosters.

    Only having two roosters will cause them to focus on only each other, and you may have continuous fighting until one is killed. There's no one good way to introduce another rooster to an existing flock with an established rooster.
     
  3. folly foot

    folly foot Out Of The Brooder

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    OK thanks we do have two coops so I was thinking I would move some of our girls into that one... do you think it might work? Both are on opposite sides of the property
     
  4. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Lots of Chickens Premium Member

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    That would definitely be a good option.
     
  5. Mrs. K

    Mrs. K Overrun With Chickens

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    I agree (often do, good advisor) with Oldhenlikesdogs. Another option, may be to cull the current roosters, and add two new ones.

    As for the fertility, the sap is just beginning to rise, so as spring comes on, your current rooster may do better. However, now, as you cook, keep a tally sheet on your counter, and when you open an egg to cook with, check the color if you have different breeds of hens, and record how many are fertile, how many are not.

    When you daily use of eggs is running at fairly high percentage of fertilized eggs, it is safe to assume the ones you set will be similar.

    Mrs K
     
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  6. folly foot

    folly foot Out Of The Brooder

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    How can you tell if it's fertile by the color?
     
  7. Mrs. K

    Mrs. K Overrun With Chickens

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    Haha - I am an English teacher always speaking about writing with clarity. On re-reading, I see your confusion.

    If you have different breeds of chickens, they generally lay different colored eggs. Sometimes it is helpful to know, if there is a hen that is not getting bred by the rooster. So what I meant was record your types or breeds of eggs by color. Then, open the eggs and determine if they are fertile or not. If you are seeing a rooster breeding a hen, but the eggs are not fertile, you have a rooster problem. If hens are not getting bred by a rooster, you don't want to set those colored eggs.

    Mrs K
     
  8. folly foot

    folly foot Out Of The Brooder

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    Mrs K. How can you tell? I have read many posts on eggs and how to tell if they are fertilized, and am nowhere near having an answer. I know at this moment on of my four americaunas and my one Blackrock hen are his current favorites, but he also likes one of my red rocks and barred Plymouth. .. which I have 10 of each.... how do I tell?????
     
    Last edited: Jan 27, 2017
  9. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Lots of Chickens Premium Member

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    The germinal disk should have an extra white ring around it. You can Google picture of a fertilized chicken egg to get an image.
     
  10. Mrs. K

    Mrs. K Overrun With Chickens

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    Well you can't tell from the outside. So what you have to do, is go with an over all average fertility. Say over a week, you cook 12 eggs. 9 of the twelve have the bulls eye and are fertile. 9/12 = 75% fertility. Which give or take, if you set 10 eggs, 7-8 of them should at least begin to develop. 2-3 would not. Kind of sort of, thing is, there is no way to tell 100% if eggs are going to turn into chicks. Hence the old saying, "Don't count your chicks before they hatch!"

    Before you go to set eggs, check them. If you start getting a high percentage for a couple of weeks, that is about the best you can do. If you have a low percentage, which I think that is what you are afraid of with just one rooster, you may have to make some changes. However, the best thing to do, is keep track, week after week, for several weeks and you should have a good idea where you are.

    Mrs K
     

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