1. If this is your first time on BYC, we suggest you start with one of these three options:
    Raising Chickens Chicken Coops Join BYC
    If you're already a member of our community, click here to login & click here to learn what's new!

Integration question, specific situation.

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by Hoopla63, Mar 8, 2016.

  1. Hoopla63

    Hoopla63 Out Of The Brooder

    26
    0
    29
    Aug 24, 2015
    Hi Everyone, I have a very aggressive rooster that I raised with a very sweet hen, they get along kind of ok but not that great (she retreats to the roof a lot due to overbreeding) - he attacks us mostly, so I got two mature hens and the incubation is nearly complete - the girls are doing great! My ultimate goal was to keep the one hen, add the other two and get rid of the roo. I'm going to put the small coop in the big coop soon (thanks to all the advice I've read here!) and leave them all for about a week.
    My question is: Should I take the Roo out BEFORE everyone joins up or leave him in there to chase them all around for a bit then take him out? The reasoning behind the 2nd example is I feel like maybe if he "picks" on all of them for a bit, they will have a common thread and there won't be a difficult pecking order time for the two new or the one with the home court advantage. But I'd rather get rid of Sheldon the Roo sooner rather than later.
    I'd love your experience!
     
  2. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Sits With Chickens Premium Member

    15,909
    3,500
    436
    Jul 16, 2015
    central Wisconsin
    You raise a valid question. I personally might try it first, he might help with integration. I once introduced 6 hens to my flock. My most wonderful rooster I had at the time took one look at those girls and he took them and cared for them and protected them from any attacks from the original hens, and those hens adored him, it was very sweet.
     
    1 person likes this.
  3. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

    32,680
    5,431
    556
    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop
    I'd have gotten rid of that rooster long ago if he was attacking me....I vote get rid of him now.
    1 cock with 3 hens is still not a great ratio, especially if he's human aggressive and you don't need a cockbird.
    Removing him first might make the one hen be more receptive to the new birds.

    I'm a little confused by this "...so I got two mature hens and the incubation is nearly complete..."
    ...and this "....I'm going to put the small coop in the big coop soon..."


    Could you explain?
     
    1 person likes this.
  4. howfunkyisurchicken

    howfunkyisurchicken Overrun With Chickens

    9,279
    723
    321
    Apr 11, 2011
    Tn
    Agreed, that rooster would've been gone a long time ago. I'd take him out of the coop and put him in a pot. You'll probably find, when you release the new hens, that your lone girl with be top bird. They're in her house, hoping to get some of her resources (food, water, protection).

    aart- I thought they were saying integration (instead of incubation) was almost complete (I know my phone does some wonky autocorrecting sometimes). And I took the small coop in the big coop thing as perhaps they were moving a small mobile coop into a much larger coop or run to allow everyone to get acquainted before the new girls are released. I could be wrong though, its been known to happen :)

    OP- good luck.
     
    1 person likes this.
  5. Hoopla63

    Hoopla63 Out Of The Brooder

    26
    0
    29
    Aug 24, 2015
    Hmmm, thanks you guys, it seems thoughts are mixed about this and to "how funky" you are correct, they are in a smaller mobile coop in the garage and have been for about 3 weeks. They seem very healthy and so I feel this weekend we can place the small coop in the large one and let them observe for about a week. So I'm still flumaxed on whether to take the mean roo out before or after we put them together. If sounds like it could work either way so maybe a coin flip :) Either way, the roo will be dinner at some point, its quite distressing to have him run at us.
     
  6. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Sits With Chickens Premium Member

    15,909
    3,500
    436
    Jul 16, 2015
    central Wisconsin
    If he's that bad I would get rid of him and proceed with integration without him, I personally wouldn't put up with a human aggressive rooster. If he helped with integration you would have to keep him for a while and it's not worth the danger.
     
    1 person likes this.
  7. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

    32,680
    5,431
    556
    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop
    Getting rid of the rooster the same day you move the new girls coop into the large coop(could we see a pic(s) of both coops?)
    would make 2 changes/upsets into 1.....
    .....and you will be more relaxed with the nasty boy gone, better to be able to sit, enjoy, and observe the hens without interference.
     
    1 person likes this.
  8. azygous

    azygous Chicken Obsessed

    9,511
    2,446
    411
    Dec 11, 2009
    Colorado Rockies
    Your dilemma has to do with both temperaments of the cockerel and the hen.

    Cockerels are overloaded with hormones, and they get obsessed with mating constantly, and their "technique" leaves a lot to be desired. Segregating him during this adolescent period is a very helpful management tool for keeping stress down in the flock. After he reaches a year, he will begin to mellow.

    Likewise, some hens are overly stressed by the clumsy attentions of a hormonal cockerel. I have a couple of older hens in my flock who screech like they're being slaughtered when the cockerel focuses his attention on them. This is all normal.

    What you need to determine is whether to leave the cockerel or segregate him. My cockerel, for ten months, is rather low-key as young cockerels go. In my case, he's not such a crazed sex fiend that I feel the need to segregate him. However, I have segregated cockerels before during this breaking-in period.

    Most hens will adjust to the rooster's attentions in time. I've noticed the hens who have been most stressed out by my cockerel's mating when he first came of age, are now squatting for him instead of fleeing and screeching their heads off.

    How you deal with this is a matter of management style. It's strictly your choice how to handle it.
     
    1 person likes this.
  9. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

    31,452
    3,522
    538
    Jun 18, 2010
    Southern Oregon
    Get rid of the rooster. The hens won't bond with each other against a common aggressor.

    If the two new hens are already buddies, here's what I'd do....

    get rid of that rooster asap.

    add one new hen to the established hen. Give them a few days together and see how they do. When things are settled, add the third hen.

    That will prevent the two new hens from ganging up on the established hen.
     
    1 person likes this.
  10. Hoopla63

    Hoopla63 Out Of The Brooder

    26
    0
    29
    Aug 24, 2015
    Hi Guys, I have an update and a question. We got rid of the roo, I must say I am flooded with relief as I can enter the coop without major drama. But my lone girl, who is actually bigger then the other 2 new girls, won't come off the roof (it's been a refuge from the roo for her for some time now) She got along fine with one girl but the other, who is more dominant is trying to establish dominance over her (as she did the other) and she will have none of it. Instead of trying to get along with them, she is hiding on the roof. Even though it's just the one hen that is bugging her a bit. It doesn't even seem to be that bad, if the dominant (new) hen even so much as looks her way, she runs and gets on the roof. Now she won't get off the roof even for a moment. I've been providing food and water for her up there, should I stop doing that and force her to try to face her foe?
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by