In your experience, how much of chicken behavior is hereditary?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by DuckieG, Jun 21, 2009.

  1. DuckieG

    DuckieG In the Brooder

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    Jun 11, 2009
    Traphill, NC
    We have a group of lovely young BO, 2 roos and 7 hens. One roo is a little standoffish and is going to be as big as a turkey--he is 4 months old and is bigger than both of our full grown (rather robust) BO hens. I suspect that he may be a little difficult to live with but magnificent to look at. The other roo is smaller, and also nice looking but has the BEST personality. If you breed a super sweet roo to a super sweet hen, do you get a "pet" chicken or is it more of a gamble? My son wants to breed the nice little roo to his favorite hen for really friendly pet chickens. Will it turn out that way? If the big roo is nasty, I don't want to waste time hatching his babies if half of them will be nasty roos. Though, as big as he is they might be good eating:D
     
  2. greathorse

    greathorse Songster

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    Oct 1, 2008
    Northern Colorado
    I want to qualify my answer by saying there are a lot of people with a lot more experience than me, so you may want to take other responses into consideration. I think disposition is very heriditary. The tendency toward aggresiveness and other behavior can certainly be a factor in the behavior of virtually any animal. My neighbor gave me a rooster that was a full brother to a rooster of hers and they were both very aggressive to the point that neither of them are still "with us"

    I also hatched a bunch of chicks from her rooster and they all seemed to have the same tendency. I also think that a person can have a tremendous influence on the behavior of a rooster just by making sure the rooster understands who is the top "rooster" so to speak.

    The top rooster must be the human.

    I think you help or hurt your odds with good disposition genetics, but there is no way of knowing for sure until they mature.

    Hope I have helped
     
    Last edited: Jun 21, 2009
  3. I think greathorse has a good handle on this. One thing I might add is that the hen is responsible for most of the genes passed on. However, an aggressive rooster stands a good chance of throwing aggressive offspring. Good luck......Pop
     
  4. DuckieG

    DuckieG In the Brooder

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    Jun 11, 2009
    Traphill, NC
    We have handled these roosters constantly since we had a bad experience with one of our first roosters. He didn't much like people so we tried respecting his wishes for awhile--eventually he would run across the pasture (they were free ranging at our old place) to attack. He just liked to fight. He is why the temperament thing is so important to us now.
     

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