1. Come check out hundreds of awesome coop pages (and a few that need suggestions) in our 2018 Coop Rating Project!

I'm new at this please help me

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by Mrsroeder2012, Oct 27, 2012.

  1. Mrsroeder2012

    Mrsroeder2012 Chirping

    Aug 8, 2012
    My Coop
    I have bought my First Rooster and and wheaten may-lay hen, and i am wanting to breed my rooster with one of my 22 hens that i have..... But i don't know how to breed them, or when to breed them, or if i need to seperate them from the others so just one of my hens will be my setter, or when a hen goes in heat.......?

    Since this is my first time i don't want to do alot so that's why i only want to so one hen.....I would also want to know how offen they mate and is there such a thing as "certain day " that is better for them to mate.....Oh yea and when my chicken starts laying will i have to step in and take over and incubate them or will she do it all,where i don't have to worry about them, or at-least buy anything extra.
    I was told that spring time is the best time for them to start laying or at least breed...Let me know what you can tell me.... thank you, and here is a picture of my rooster!


  2. cbenson6820

    cbenson6820 In the Brooder

    Aug 3, 2011
    If you put a rooster with a hen, he will most likely breed her almost immediately. The hens don't really have a say as to when they want to breed or if its a good time. The rooster decides that and hens do not go into "heat". They can be bred at any time year round. Just because a hen has been bred and is laying does not mean she is going to go "broody". "Broody" or a "Broody Hen" is a hen who has decided for what ever reason she wants to sit on her eggs and hatch them. Malays are a gamey/fighting breed. They don't lay much at all, 1-2 eggs a week, and they don't go broody very often if ever. I've never personally owned a malay or any gamey breeds but from what i've read they are an aggressive breed. You may want to be careful putting her with your other hens because gamey breeds are known to fight to the death, more common in roosters, but i've heard of aggressive hens too.
  3. How to Breed- The roo will do all the work for you. He will jump on the hen, grab her by the feathers on her neck (sometimes even right behind her comb), do a little butt shake/pelvic thrusting, and get off of her. A good roo will usually do a little courtship dance first. He will circle the hen with the outside wing down by his leg. This is pretty much the mating "ritual". The hen is usually pretty upset about it, and will sometimes try to run away.

    When to Breed- The roo will usually try to mate the hen as much as he can. Especially "ambitious" roos will mate a hen several times a day. They will do it throughout the year.

    Quote: You can separate, if you only want him to breed specific hens. But if you don't care who he breeds, he'll just mate with them all. Roosters don't really care, although they have some favorites, they will breed a hen regardless of breed, age, size, or if you want him to or not.

    The hen that lays the fertile egg will not necessarily want to hatch it. Most of the time, either a hen is broody or she's not. I've had a few instances where an old hen that has never been broody before decided to hatch babies, but most of the time a hen will be a consistent broody throughout her life. And a hen that is broody won't lay eggs anyways. So, usually an un-broody hen will be bred and laying the eggs. Whether a rooster has mated her or not will not affect her tendency to go broody. I suggest that if you are planning on hatching eggs you get a hen that tends to go broody a lot, or an incubator.

    Quote: Hens don't go in heat. They can always be mated.

    I would give him the oppritunity to breed more than one hen. While you can do it that way, you don't want him to tear up one hen by only mating with her. Plus, if you want to hatch the eggs, by having more hens giving you fertile eggs you will be able to make sure that the chicks will all hatch around the same day, whereas if you had only one you would have a very staggered hatch.

    Quote: Pretty much as much as the roo feels like. He will breed one hen several times a day and tear out her feathers. But if he was in with all 22 hens he wouldn't really be able to mate them all everyday, and they would be less "damaged". While he'll still have his favorite she won't get beat up so much if he has other ladies to distract him.

    Quote: No. They will mate everyday if given the chance.

    Quote: She might not, but if you have another hen that is broody she will hatch the eggs for you. If you would rather do artificial incubation (incubator) then you should buy one and put the eggs in there. If you have a broody hen then you would be fine to put the eggs under her. She might decide to go broody, but you may have to wait and just eat the eggs for awhile until she does. Or maybe you could find someone in your area with a broody hen they would "loan"/sell you.

    Quote: Not necessarily. Hens will usually pick up their laying in Spring. But it doesn't matter if they start laying in Spring or not. Some people prefer Fall Hatches because they will grow in the not-so-good laying months through Fall and Winter and will start laying and lay through Spring and Summer. Whereas if you hatch chicks in Spring they will spend good laying months growing, not laying. I hatch throughout the year, but I actually prefer hatching in Spring, because I don't have to worry about chicks freezing when they're outside with their mamas.

    You have a pretty roo!

    Hope this helps!

    ~~Ms. B :)
    1 person likes this.
  4. Mrsroeder2012

    Mrsroeder2012 Chirping

    Aug 8, 2012
    My Coop
    how do you know which hen would be a good broody, i have all kinds of breeds, and what is the differents in a broody and a setter ? if you need to know what breeds i have let me know and i can get a list made up for you .....

    I do believe that i will not separate them i think i will have him with all 22 hens, i think that would be the best idea.....Like i said im new at this so bare with me if i dont understand some of the thing u are talking about
  5. Some breeds that tend to grow broody more are:

    Plymouth Rocks

    Other breeds will go broody though, these are just the more common ones. It's practically impossible to tell if an individual hen will be a good broody/mother though. But if a broody keeps moving from nest to nest on me, I usually don't let her hatch.

    You'll know a hen is broody if she puffs up and screeches at you when you reach under her. She also will refuse to leave the nest other than to eat and drink a few times a day.

    A broody is a hen that sits on a nest in an attempt to hatch chicks. I assume that's what you mean by a setter, correct?

    That sounds like a good idea. He'll be a happy, busy boy! :)

    That's okay. We all had to learn this stuff at some point. I'm happy to help when I can. :)
  6. ChickensRDinos

    ChickensRDinos Songster

    Aug 19, 2012
    Los Angeles
    After a rooster has mated with a chicken then the chicken will lay fertile eggs. One mating can result in several days of fertilized eggs - it is not just one egg. A fertile egg has the potential to become a chick but this will not happen unless the eggs are placed under a broody or put in an incubator. It is not much like mammal reproduction. In theory a chicken will lay an egg everyday until she is satisfied with the number of eggs and then go broody and sit on the eggs. The baby chickens start to form when she sits, not when she lays so even though they were laid at different times they will all hatch around the same time.

    As chicken were domesticated some breeds have been bred to be more broody and some to not be broody at all. This is a behavior and you can not control when it happens. When it does happen the hen will sit in your nest all day and all night and will leave only rarely (maybe once a day ish) to eat, drink and poo. She will also pull out the feathers on her belly. She will not lay eggs during this time.

    Only laying hens go broody but the chickens do not know if they are laying fertile eggs or not and hens that are prone to broodiness will go broody whether you have a rooster or not. The two things are sort of unrelated.
    Last edited: Oct 28, 2012
  7. Mrsroeder2012

    Mrsroeder2012 Chirping

    Aug 8, 2012
    My Coop
    OK thank you thoes anwsers was very helpful and ill keep all that in min, i saw him after my Road Island Red earlier and she was not happy and he was ruff with her, when he was trying to get on top of her, but i guess that is normal lol but thank you

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by