Integrating 3 hens with a rooster!!

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by RooJi, Oct 26, 2014.

  1. RooJi

    RooJi Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Hi there BYC!!
    I need some advice, I have 3 new chicks: Sky-BCM (6 weeks 5 days), Ji-Dominique (8 weeks 5 days) and Bertha-Aussy (8 weeks 5 days).
    I have had all three for a week and a half, now that Sky is old enough to stay outside and they have been around my almost 5 month old rooster Geoffery (golden laced polish) for the same time. Today I let all of them out to graze just to see how the rooster would be not being separated by their runs. I read that this was one of the methods for hens: just let then out to graze and they'll be to distracted to notice each other. So evrything was fine but then the chicks started messing with his food and he just on Ji and held onto her head feather and so I pushed him off! They all ran to the back of the run and I kept Geoffery from running after them. A little later he did this to the youngest, Sky and then I stopped him before he did it to Bertha. Is this normal behavior? im scared to put them in the coop when hes sleeping cause Im nervous I wont get up early enough to let them out and give the chick somewhere to run too. Any advice? I dont know how muh is ok and how much is abusive! I just don't ant and of the chicks to get severely injured...
     
  2. DesertChickens1

    DesertChickens1 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I've had a couple polish roosters, and in my experience they are more aggresvie with females (and everyone/thing else really) than other breeds. I had to sell both of them because they were hurting my hens. The line between 'normal' and 'aggressive ' I think depends on the person. When the hens are bleeding and or getting feathers torn off I would say that's to far (although I get rid of roosters that are gettin to that point before that happens) he may just be asserting himself or he may just be an aggressive rooster. What I would do it just let them do their thing and not intervene unless the hens are in immediate danger. If you're unhappy with his behavior then your hens proubly are too.
     
    Last edited: Oct 26, 2014
  3. RooJi

    RooJi Chillin' With My Peeps

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    ok thanks! so its ok if he jumps on them and holds onto their head feathers? if he wont get off should i intervene? Do you think its ok to put the chicks in with him at night even though there is the chance I wont be able to let them out right when they wake up?
     
  4. DesertChickens1

    DesertChickens1 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    If he jumps on them he's just doing his rooster thing. If he just grabs them and is just plain standing on them, then he's just being aggressive. If you feel like hes hurting your hens, then you can intervene. You dont sound like you'd be comfortable with leaving your hens with your rooster, so you shouldn't. I would find a day where you can just hang out with your flock and watch out for your hens, and let them find the coop where they're goingto sleep, and if eveveryone gets in there nice I would let them stay the night, and wake up nice and early to let them out.
    With my flock when I incorporate new hens to my rooster he usually already have hens so he doesn't pay much attention the new ones other than just checking them out so when I do it i just thrown in there and watch for a little while and if they don't look like they are going to kill each other I jus let them go haha
     
    Last edited: Oct 27, 2014
    1 person likes this.
  5. RooJi

    RooJi Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Ok thank you so much!!! Is it ok if he is still on starter food even though he is over 16weeks?
     
  6. cafarmgirl

    cafarmgirl Overrun With Chickens

    In my opinion your chicks are on the young side to be integrated with an older bird, especially a rooster who is approaching the raging-teenage-hormone stage. I don't integrate youngsters with older birds until they are 10 to 12 weeks old and only with mature roosters who are proven to be good with their hens.

    Edited to add: Yes, it's fine to let your rooster eat the starter or grower at this point.
     
    Last edited: Oct 28, 2014
  7. Ol Grey Mare

    Ol Grey Mare One egg shy of a full carton. ..... Premium Member

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    Agreed - the specifics of your situation are such that this could end up going VERY badly, VERY quickly for your young girls.
     
  8. cafarmgirl

    cafarmgirl Overrun With Chickens

    I agree very much with this. When a young rooster starts this kind of behavior with older hens he is generally put in his place pretty quickly. Chicks this age are in no way able to that.
     
  9. RooJi

    RooJi Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thank you all so much! I will keep them separated until the hens are more developed...this takes a lot of stress off me haha
     

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