Introducing new rooster while one hen has a chick?

kokopelli91

In the Brooder
Mar 26, 2021
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We unfortunately lost our amazing rooster last night to him defending the flock against a predator. I've been looking for a new rooster to take his place, but my only concern is that one of our resident hens has a chick that's about 3 weeks old currently. Should I wait to get a new rooster and introduce him to the flock until after that chick is grown? I wanna do right by our flock, but with winter approaching we've had an uptick with predators being more brazen - the hen with the chick lost her other chick 2 days ago to a falcon that got through the netting above the run.
 

Lacy Duckwing

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Perhaps you can remove the hen and chick, placing them in a predator proof coop, then get a rooster. Every rooster is different, so I wouldn't want to take chances in this case.

One thing, do you know the gender of the chick? You might not want to wait that long, nor is there that guarantee that'll it'll survive by the way you talk, but it could be a rooster that you can replace the other with.
 

U_Stormcrow

Free Ranging
Jun 7, 2020
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We unfortunately lost our amazing rooster last night to him defending the flock against a predator. I've been looking for a new rooster to take his place, but my only concern is that one of our resident hens has a chick that's about 3 weeks old currently. Should I wait to get a new rooster and introduce him to the flock until after that chick is grown? I wanna do right by our flock, but with winter approaching we've had an uptick with predators being more brazen - the hen with the chick lost her other chick 2 days ago to a falcon that got through the netting above the run.
Any new bird means quarantine. You have a facility you can quarantine the new rooster in, far from the flock???

and then a way to do a see and be seen process for several weeks to smooth integration? By the time you've done those two things, the three week old chick is going to be into their fourth month...

and in the interim the rooster will perform none of the tasks you might hope of him.
 

aart

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We unfortunately lost our amazing rooster last night to him defending the flock against a predator. I've been looking for a new rooster to take his place, but my only concern is that one of our resident hens has a chick that's about 3 weeks old currently. Should I wait to get a new rooster and introduce him to the flock until after that chick is grown? I wanna do right by our flock, but with winter approaching we've had an uptick with predators being more brazen - the hen with the chick lost her other chick 2 days ago to a falcon that got through the netting above the run.
Sounds like you need a secure and spacious run rather than another male bird that may or may not 'protect' against predators.
 

Ridgerunner

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I don't know how much you know about quarantine or why you might want to do that. Some people quarantine, some don't. If you wish I can give you my opinions on why and when you might want to quarantine but that's a lot of typing. I also do not put a lot of faith in a rooster being that much protection to a flock but obviously you do. Your opinion is the one that counts.

If you get a new rooster, get a mature one. You don't want a bratty adolescent that is controlled by his hormones and likely not respected by the hens. You never know how any individual will react or behave, but your odds of a smooth integration are much higher with a mature rooster, at least a year old, than with an immature cockerel.

I've never had a problem with a mature rooster and chicks, either chicks he sired or chicks from the post office. That's chicks given to a broody hen roaming with the flock or raised in my brooder which is in the coop. Some people have so you need to watch. Some people have had broody hens kill their chicks, about anything can happen. A good mature rooster should take care of every member of his flock. Some ignore adolescent boys and girls or may keep rowdy adolescent boys in line when they bother his hens but until they are seen as rivals I haven't had any problems with a rooster and chicks. He should assume any chicks are his. My roosters generally ignore any chicks but sometimes one helps Mamma take care of them.

I don't know how much room you have. Bad behaviors are often magnified when room is tight. I'd expect the broody hen to keep her chick away from the rooster and the rest of the flock most of the time if she has room. I'd still expect a mature rooster to not harm a chick, I'd expect the chick to be at more risk from you other hens from my experience. But the tighter the space the more I'd watch.

I would not let concerns over a new rooster killing a chick stop me from getting a new flock master if you really want one. Just get a mature one. I'd worry more about integrating a new hen.
 

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