I'm encountering a problem with a newly matured rooster bloodying the heck out of a much-loved Rhode Island Red hen. She and her sister are about a year old and have been inseparable. They were introduced to 6 new chicks and were accepting of the new flock for the most part--only a few lunges here and there to remind the little ones who knows best. The chick who turned out to be a rooster (a very handsome Dominic about 5 months old) has always been the largest of the six, who are all cross-bred and vary in size, color, feather, and demeanor. Another is showing signs of being a rooster but hasn't shown his- or herself just yet. They have been sharing the coop for almost 4 months now, free-ranging on the weekends and when we're home. They would generally range separately: two hens on their own and 6 newbies following each other around most of the time. They would join up in the yard occasionally, and especially when I came out with treats. No problems until..... this week. Roo has gone after Lucy, leaving her head featherless and her comb bloody. She's the only one. As of last night, I've separated her because she needs time to recover from a SERIOUS injury--her skull has been exposed. She gives big, yummy, healthy eggs almost every day, even now. Yesterday morning, they were at it again inside the coop--at least, he was. By the time I got dressed and went out to them, Lucy was roosting inside and everyone else was ready to be let out of the run for the day (I was home this AM). I checked on her after an hour or so, once the rest of the flock (Ethel, the sister, now joining them--or they joining her) was far away. There was Lucy, still chilling inside. Not laying, just resting--or hiding. By the time I got home early evening they were all back in the coop roosting together, but Lucy was taken to the tool shed, her injury reaching what could now be life-threatening. HOW MUCH TIME DO I GIVE THEM TO SORT IT OUT BEFORE I CHUCK THE ROOSTER?? I don't want to wait too long for things to settle down and lose my pretty little hen or any others. The Rhode Island Reds were my first chickens ever, and so this is also my first rooster. Is he just an over-aggressive jerk who needs re-purposing? Or does he have enough merit to warrant giving him a chance? Hen will remain separated till she heals fully, but I'm asking about the rooster because I don't want him to target another.