Introducing younger hens to young Rooster but is older than hens.

Lareebell

In the Brooder
Sep 14, 2019
20
13
31
San Diego, Ca
Yes polish, jewelery, moles, freckles, nipples, teeth.
Anything shiny, a different color or obviously hanging off your person is basically a wonderland for a pecking chicken.
There is no maybe here, it will happen hide your bits you'd rather not have pecked.
Normally im a rooster pusher, I have two myself they're awesome.
But if I didn't know anything about some of the bizzare stuff they do and how utterly goofy they act at times they would not be awesome not even a little.
And you being a true newbie an unsavory boy could spoil your whole experience, you have kids too so they would have theirs spoiled too.
It is ultimately up to you, but if you do keep a male you are going to need so much more space.
First rooster lesson, give them ample room to either be a magnificent piece of yard candy or be a complete idiot if he's having one of those days.
It makes things better for everybody you, him, those girls.
Small pens make horrible roosters and bald miserable hens.
They also make them very,very,very nervous which will lead no doubt about it to somebody getting flogged.
They really should teach classes about roos for new keepers.
Really, they are that flippin odd.
Thats why I encourage you to wait until you have time to deal with some really odd crap :)
 

Lareebell

In the Brooder
Sep 14, 2019
20
13
31
San Diego, Ca
Thanks for the info. We do free range them during the daytime. The girls are almost 10 weeks, dying to get to a coop so I need to figure out something ASAP for the cockerels. I probably don’t need to worry about guests coming over with our dog and now teenager Roos.
I hope I have tamed the girls good enough. I try to pick them up or touch them in the crate almost everyday.
 

Mrs. K

Free Ranging
Nov 12, 2009
8,476
9,828
616
western South Dakota
If asked, I recommend a hen only flock the first year. Roosters take a lot of experience, and roosters have ruined the whole chicken experience for a lot of people. Most people that have never seen a rooster attack, vastly underestimate it.

This forum is full of stories where the darling goes to the nightmare in an instant. Probably not the case, but inexperienced keepers do not always pick up on the signals that the rooster is becoming aggressive.

People on here keep all kinds of flocks. Flocks of more than 50 birds, to flocks of 2-3 hens. Their set ups are completely different, and so are the dynamics of their flocks.

Looking at your set up, I agree that it would be very difficult for even an experienced person to raise up a nice rooster in that tight of quarters. Roosters take a more space than hens do.

And while the fact that a lot of roosters do not get to live a long life, it is sadder when a child is attacked. If your child is under 6 years, it is more than likely he who will be attacked first, and often near or at the face level.

So yes, I would highly recommend a hen only flock in that set up. Add more birds after you expand it, not before.

Mrs K
 

Chickassan

Wattle Fondler
May 23, 2017
14,419
71,933
1,297
Greenville S.C, formerly Noneya U.S.A
You'll do fine, getting them accustomed to you touching them is a huge step already.
It is a learning process and be warned it can and will get weird many times even with sweet little hens.
Luckily you have sooo many people that have years and years of experience with pretty much everything chickeny and are always happy to help out. :)
Thanks for the info. We do free range them during the daytime. The girls are almost 10 weeks, dying to get to a coop so I need to figure out something ASAP for the cockerels. I probably don’t need to worry about guests coming over with our dog and now teenager Roos.
I hope I have tamed the girls good enough. I try to pick them up or touch them in the crate almost everyday.
 

Lareebell

In the Brooder
Sep 14, 2019
20
13
31
San Diego, Ca
If asked, I recommend a hen only flock the first year. Roosters take a lot of experience, and roosters have ruined the whole chicken experience for a lot of people. Most people that have never seen a rooster attack, vastly underestimate it.

This forum is full of stories where the darling goes to the nightmare in an instant. Probably not the case, but inexperienced keepers do not always pick up on the signals that the rooster is becoming aggressive.

People on here keep all kinds of flocks. Flocks of more than 50 birds, to flocks of 2-3 hens. Their set ups are completely different, and so are the dynamics of their flocks.

Looking at your set up, I agree that it would be very difficult for even an experienced person to raise up a nice rooster in that tight of quarters. Roosters take a more space than hens do.

And while the fact that a lot of roosters do not get to live a long life, it is sadder when a child is attacked. If your child is under 6 years, it is more than likely he who will be attacked first, and often near or at the face level.

So yes, I would highly recommend a hen only flock in that set up. Add more birds after you expand it, not before.

Mrs K
Thank you!
So funny, actually not. This coop is advertised for 8 chickens! I don’t think so! This is a good source here and I am glad I found it. My son just turned 8, but I can see if he was younger it could be very scary! He doesn’t seem to mind that we find homes for the original chickens hatched in his class. In fact he wouldn’t mind them for dinner. But we aren’t going to go that route!!
 
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Chickassan

Wattle Fondler
May 23, 2017
14,419
71,933
1,297
Greenville S.C, formerly Noneya U.S.A
You are so welcome!
I love helping new keepers, not too much though because it takes away some of the fun.
Those coops do lie about how many fit and it is a huge peeve around here.
So many new keepers believe the box and why wouldn't they?
Boxes dont lie as a general rule.
Prefab coops though, the boxes might as well be printed with actual poop.
Whatever occupancy it states, cut it in half right from the start.
You would not believe how many of those little coops iv'e seen packed like clown cars, poor keepers feeling just horrible because they've crowded their birds and now they're miserable or some kind of funky disease popped up due to stress
All because a person dared to belive the specifications on a product. I wish I was kidding but im not 100% true.:)
Thank you!
So funny, actually not. This coop is advertised for 8 chickens! I don’t think so! This is a good source here and I am glad I found it. My son just turned 8, but I can see if he was younger it could be very scary! He doesn’t seem to mind that we find homes for the original chickens hatched in his class. In fact he wouldn’t mind them for dinner. But we aren’t going to go that route!!
 

Chickassan

Wattle Fondler
May 23, 2017
14,419
71,933
1,297
Greenville S.C, formerly Noneya U.S.A
Prefab coops though you've got to admit those boxes... oh boy.
Huge lettering plastered all over that that it has an 8 or whatever hen occupancy and that has to look like the ticket to a total beginner.
They have no idea 8 hen occupancy is pretty much about as concrete as some of the serving suggestion ideas in food packages.
It just gripes my butt, along with a million other shifty things out there. :barnie
Actually, IMO, the opposite it true.
Every box, and piece of advertising, has lies.
It can be hard to spot them tho...remember what our friend Barnum said.
 

Cryss

Crossing the Road
Nov 12, 2017
4,182
10,318
757
Northwest New Jersey
I have a TSC coop like that but the door is slightly different. So, from one TSC coop owner to another...

Chickens need the indoors area of the coop to have 4sqft of walkabout floor space per bird NOT including the nesting area. Those coops only hold 1 or 2 chickens. If you enclose the entire thing, run and all, you can make it all coop, no run, able to hold 5 chickens. Add a run (10sqft/bird!) To make it usable. I put mine inside the run. Here's how I enclosed my coop.
https://www.backyardchickens.com/threads/altering-my-terrible-ts-coop.1267790/
HOWEVER! Chicken math is a thing! How many chickens do you want?

How many does your municipality allow? Usually that's how many you'll end up with. My recommendation? Enclose your current coop, get rid of cockerels (that's a whole 'nother story), and get busy building a bigger coop, preferably a walk in type. Yup, I'm almost done with mine now.
 

Ridgerunner

Crossing the Road
Premium Feather Member
Feb 2, 2009
26,127
16,808
797
Southeast Louisiana
This coop is advertised for 8 chickens! I don’t think so!

Those numbers are based on a false premise, that we are keeping them in industrial conditions. We're not. We don't cut off their upper beak so they can't eat each other. We don't manage the light or feeding in ways to decrease aggression. Theirs are all the same age and sex. They breed theirs to handle those crowded conditions better than the chickens we typically have. There are several other things we do differently than industry. I'll give a numerical example of a difference. I'm going to round off the numbers to make the math easier but the principle is the same.

Assume a chicken takes up 1 square feet of space. They don't but assume they do. If you give 8 chickens 2 square feet each, that's 16 square feet total. So they occupy 8 square feet and have 8 square feet free to explore or avoid other chickens. Let's say you give each chicken 4 square feet, or a total of 32 square feet. That leaves them 24 square feet unoccupied. Quite a difference. This ignores how much room is taken up by feeders or waterers. If you keep the square feet per chicken the same, the greater percentage of "free" space is taken up with feeders and waterers if your numbers are smaller.

Now assume you have 5,000 hens in a laying facility. Give each hen 2 square feet or 10,000 square feet total. That leaves them 5,000 square feet total unoccupied. It's still crowded and they still have to manage them to reduce aggression but it gives them a lot more free space. To industry it is less expensive to use those management tricks than provide a lot more space.

We can learn a lot from studies done on those commercial flocks but you can't blindly apply that information. It's not an apples to apples comparison. We don't manage them the same way.

Just because you get those coops at a Tractor Supply or Rural King don't assume corporate people making those decisions have ever raised a chicken. That's not just a space requirement, it's how they are laid out. Typically thy provide a lot more nest space than is really required, roosts are often placed inefficiently, ventilation is usually horrible, they are just not designed for chickens.

A lot of people buy and use prefab coops, sometimes without major modifications though hardly ever with the number of chickens advertised. Some pre-fab coops you see advertised online aren't horrible, but a lot are. I wish people would post a link to those coops with photos and dimensions on here and ask for a review before they buy them. Most of the time we'll probably talk them out of it or suggest modifications to make them work.
 

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