I have a mean silkie rooster

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by zachman15, Feb 11, 2015.

  1. zachman15

    zachman15 In the Brooder

    Sep 1, 2014
    Hello I have a brown silkie rooster that is mean he full on attacks me wherever I get close to the coop it is very annoying when I try to get some eggs. Can I train him to be nice?? Or is he better being soup?
  2. chooks4life

    chooks4life Crowing

    Apr 8, 2013
    Greetings and [​IMG]

    The general consensus is that he's better off being soup. After all breeding the likes of him is not going to do the breed any favors temperament-wise since it's so often inherited.

    As I often say, keeping one bad rooster takes away a potential home for a good rooster, since many roosters die every year for no fault of their own, just for want of a good home.

    Not to mention our genetic impact on future generations, keeping bad natured animals instead of good ones. Some once great breeds have been damaged by that, they were once known for their great temperaments but now you hear of them being vicious and violent, mean tempered... But generally of great show type! Since attitude is often overlooked in favor of appearance.

    But, while the majority of us find attempts to train them out of it a waste of time in the long run, some people say they've had success.

    I'm still trying to ascertain how many of these people continue to experience success permanently, since the majority report short term success, and then find that in the long run no permanent behavior changes occur, and they tend to stop telling anyone how it's going so nobody knows how it ends up.

    Short term and initial success is common enough, it's the permanent success that remains so elusive that I am semi-convinced it doesn't exist, though surely it must since there's an exception to every rule. Theoretically, anyway.

    After the first few years of keeping chooks I just culled aggressive mentalities out, rather than retrained them, since otherwise you have to do the same training and maintenance for every lot of offspring from that individual for roughly the next 7 generations. That old 7-generation rule of thumb is true for most traits, takes on average 7 generations to breed it in or out. It's been many years since I've had any trouble with aggression, it can easily be removed from family lines. Bringing in fresh blood brings in behavioral traits I culled out but I just do maintenance cullings to keep the good attitudes in and the bad attitudes out.

    There's a forum user who has laid out a pattern of training he reckons works for him. You can read it in this thread:
    Quote: If you want to try it, good luck and please let us know how it goes.

    Best wishes.
  3. CrazyTalk

    CrazyTalk Songster

    Jun 10, 2014
    I typically cull roosters that I have problems with - there's too many good roosters freely available to keep bad ones.

    That being said, many of the people who come on here with rooster problems can directly be traced back to keeper behavior - and if you don't sort out any issues like that, you're going to have the same issues with the next one. Things like pushing roosters off of hens, pushing roosters around with your feet, etc can all start roosters down the spiral of aggression.
  4. dheltzel

    dheltzel Crowing

    Nov 30, 2013
    Pottstown, PA
    I've raised dozens of silkie roos, and I can count the number of mean ones on one hand. But I don't need any fingers to count the number I've reformed - and not for lack of trying. Usually, silkies are the gentlest of all breeds, but the occasional "bad seed" roo seems to get all the meanness of a hundred other silkies put into one small body. Man, could I ever tell you stories . . .

    I agree, get rid of him, he's not worth keeping around. But don't let this experience turn you against silkie roos, get a new one and you'll be very pleased.
  5. chooks4life

    chooks4life Crowing

    Apr 8, 2013
    This, I respectfully disagree with...

    See... You say you can trace aggression to people pushing roosters off hens, for example. Other breeders swear by pushing them off hens, because 'otherwise they turn aggressive'.

    Some say 'never handfeed the rooster' or 'never feed hens in front of him' --- otherwise he'll become aggressive. Others say always do that, otherwise they'll become aggressive.

    Some say never handle them, or they'll turn aggressive. Others swear by handling them, or they'll become aggressive.

    Everyone has years of experience to back up their claims. But they're all in direct contradiction with one another.

    The only people whose experiences agree with one another are those that cull against aggression, period. They all agree it stops cropping up after that. Their handling and rearing methods differ wildly but it doesn't matter once you cull against aggression, because the root cause of the problem is 'solved' --- or removed, anyway.

    I handfeed mine, handle them, remove them from hens if necessary, handle hens as I please in front of them, etc, and have absolutely no aggression issues, and haven't had for many years now --- because I culled all aggressive males and females out back when I first started. Now I don't have to mind my P's and Q's around them, or treat them any special way.

    It is such a strong trait genetically that it's easily removed by selecting against it, whereas training against it appears to me to be little more than managing aggressive animals by trying to avoid activating known triggers. Often nothing more than a hazardous guessing game, or gamble really.

    Nothing that you do or don't do actually causes aggression, in my opinion and experience.

    What matters is whether or not the animal is aggressive in the first place. I know many disagree with that. But this forum is full of people who did everything right according to various experienced individuals and yet still had their roosters turn aggressive. This is not to slur those experienced individuals, they are recommending what works for them and what they found is true, of course, but I don't agree with the overall belief that it's just 'a function of handler interactions' or anything simplistic like that which is to blame for rooster aggression. It's genetic IMO and the product of an aberrant worldview.

    X2. It's astonishing how vicious some of them are, but it's always a needless tragedy when people let the psychopaths and mentally diseased individuals turn them against the gender as a whole. Some are just 'bad apples'.

    Best wishes.

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