Introducing 9-week old pullets to a 6-month old roo?

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by BWchicken, Oct 8, 2009.

  1. BWchicken

    BWchicken Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I was going to wait til they were older, but due to unforseen circumstances, I'm putting a dozen 9 week old (all pullets I think) in with my 6 month old bachelor roo in his very large run and 6x8 coop. The roo has always been very docile, but has never had a lot of chickens around him because until now, he's lived only with another bachelor roo his whole life (6 months).

    btw - not sure if it makes a difference, but these are bantams. The roo is a tiny d'uccle, but still a lot bigger than them. The 9-week olds are different bantam breeds: brahmas, wyandottes, barred rocks, sebrights, easter eggers.

    What can I expect with this introduction? Will the roo recognize them as youngsters and not hurt them nor try to mate them? Will he happily share his run and coop with them? Does anyone have experience introducing pullets this young to a single roo? I'm hoping he will be happy to have them with him, but I don't know what to expect.
     
    Last edited: Oct 8, 2009
  2. Cockadoodledon't

    Cockadoodledon't Chillin' With My Peeps

    Its hard to predict,
    Hopefully he will be glad to have some company.
    BUT...you might still want to cut his spurs just in case he opens up a rooster size can of Chuck Norris type attitude.
    Watch them when you first put them together.

    I have also heard that sometimes is best to place the birds in the roost after dark and let everyone wake up together.

    Good Luck!!!
     
  3. jafo

    jafo Chillin' With My Peeps

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    [​IMG] If he's a "gentleman" he will just take 'em under his wing, if he's not, then he'll be "after" them. Our roo was at least 6 weeks older than his girls when we first got them all. He just bided his time, it's like he knew when they would be ready. He's a lover, not a rapist. They all love him back too. Kinda sweet ta watch. Introduce him to the crowd, if it's a problem, after the order is established, take him out,,,, [​IMG]
     
  4. lilcrow

    lilcrow Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Recently I've had to do some introductions of a number of new chickens. So far what I have found that works the best for everyone is to make the intros on neutral territory. In other words no ones home base. Each time I've tried to add in a new bird to an established flock, trio, or even a single bird and I create a home invasion kind of set up, it doesn't go well. d'Uccles aren't always the passive little sweethearts that most people would like to believe them to be. It could be my fault and I've really been examining my actions with the roos to see if there is something that I'm doing to set them off, but my Mille Fleurs can get a bit testy with me. I've had a roo that got cross and passed through it (he's fine now) and I had one that never did get over it. He lives in Kentucky now on a farm. (Really!) This week I combined a total of 2 pairs of hens, and a pair (pullet and cockerel) for a total of 5 hens and a roo in one pen. There was barely a ruffled feather and I was very concerned that my old girls would be real grumps about the whole thing. They were hard on that poor old rooster before, so I didn't know what to expect when I put them in with a 6 mo old. So far so good, plus there have been very few squabbles with the other girls. It seems that hens can be pretty nasty with each other too. I find it so odd that I can have chickens penned next to each other and they'll be all snuggled up to each other against the wire and it looks like they want to be buddies and get together and the minute I put them in one or the others pen, it all breaks down. [​IMG]
     
  5. BWchicken

    BWchicken Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks for the advice, I'll be making the introduction in a couple of days. I hope all goes well, but I am nervous about it. I am hoping my little d'uccle roo will make me proud and be a gentleman.

    Also, I think I have all pullets, but there is one or two that I'm not positive about. If I do see that I have an accidental roo, I will remove it, but will it be safe with the d'uccle for a couple weeks until I'm sure? In other words, if I unknowingly have an accidental roo in the 9 week old pullets, will the roo go after it straight away, or will he wait until it's older to be threatened?

    Thanks again for your help!
     
  6. Cockadoodledon't

    Cockadoodledon't Chillin' With My Peeps

    Good Luck!
     
  7. lilcrow

    lilcrow Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I am no expert on this, there are folks on here with much more experience than me, but I'll offer what I can and the thoughts I have on the matter. It seems that the louder, and more often and insistent a rooster crows the more sexually mature he is and possibly the more insistent he may be about wanting to breed. If your little roo isn't fully matured yet, and there are little cockerels in with the pullets, it may be of no concern at all. Put 'em all on foreign territory and see how it goes. If he takes a dislike to someone, take them out, or take him out, which ever works for you. I have a 9 mo old Partridge Cochin Bantam and he is VERY sexually mature. I tried to introduce him to a 6 mo old pullet with no success. He was a beast and that ended within a few minutes. I was finally able to find a full grown hen to put with him and I am in the process of working on that introduction. She is 3 yrs old and not currently laying. I think she may be able to teach him a few manners, I hope. One way or another, I will not sacrifice a hen to a rooster, hens are far too hard to come by and roosters are a dime a dozen. (Maybe not so much with the Partridge, he's a good one) but he can be replaced!
    When you make your intros, make sure it's at a time when you are going to be at home and can watch them pretty much non-stop all day. If anyone ever once draws blood it's all over for that bird. It can happen too quick if you've got a lot of birds together. They are just attracted to blood, so keep a close eye on them.
    I'll stop now, I don't want to launch into teacher/preacher mode. Any other questions, just keep asking. I think this is the best resource in the world.
     
  8. BWchicken

    BWchicken Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thank you all so much, I am still nervous but I feel better informed now. I am going to take the advice here and see how it goes. And lilcrow, feel free to go into teacher/preacher mode all you want. I will gladly take all the info and advice you can dish out!
     
  9. Wynette

    Wynette Moderator Staff Member

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    I would be EXTREMELY careful, and frankly, if it was me, I'd split the area in half with fencing or something. some people say that roosters do not breed a pullet that is not sexually mature, but that is absolutely not true. I've seen it on more than one occasion. And, you REALLY don't want your roo breeding them. Also, they should be on different food. 9 weekers are still chicks, and should be on starter until at LEAST 12 weeks; then, they could be switched to something like flock raiser until they are laying, but again, they do need to be on starter until then. Can you find a way to split the pen in half to accomodate both the young ones and the rooster om seperate pens?
     
  10. BWchicken

    BWchicken Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Yes, I can separate them in 2 adjoining pens. The problem is, I can't seperate them in the coop. Only one of those adjoining pens has a coop and it's the only coop. They'll all need access to that coop if it rains, and at night of course. And the coop's doorway is much too small to put in a dog crate or cage, etc. I'm not sure what to do, but I have to make this work somehow.
     
    Last edited: Oct 9, 2009

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