Is this aggressive behavior?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by huntersmoon, Jul 14, 2008.

  1. huntersmoon

    huntersmoon Chirping

    Apr 26, 2008
    I have read the page on rooster behavior as well as the link to, which was very helpful - and have read about a dozen pages of posts about roosters (am still reading).

    My question is, I'm not sure if the behavior was aggression or normal foot pecking but I think it was aggression. We got the RIR rooster I mentioned in my previous post; he just turned 3 months old. We have him quarantined in an old dog run. Saturday morning I went to give him fresh water and he stood by the gate as I walked up. I opened the gate inward and stuck my leg through to keep him from coming out. He bit me on the ankle, hard enough to draw blood.

    I then came in and got a fast education from the reading I mentioned above, and wish I'd found this site and those pages before I got any chickens.

    He does not fly at me, and when I'm in the pen he has not attacked me. Yesterday my husband walked into the pen in shorts and the RIR approached his legs.

    I'm sure to wear jeans and appropriate footwear now, and I have been picking him up and holding him until he submits.

    I am mostly concerned to see this behavior before he's even around the hens. Doesn't it mean he will be even more aggressive when with them?

    I feel very foolish having brought home a RIR now that I've read they tend to be more aggressive. After he bit me, I went back and got the other rooster, a barred rock. My plan was to either keep them both and add more hens, or take the RIR to the local feed store to sell. The two roosters were raised together and have shown no problems together in the run, and I house them separately at night in two dog crates.

    I have no problems taking them both back either - having read that the roosters need to be younger than the hens (my hens are 3-1/2 months). I don't want to mess things up, and have four kids who will be around the chickens. After actively managing an aggressive dog for 14 years, and just losing our other (family) dog to cancer, I am not yet up to a long process of rooster aggression. I don't want to give up too soon, but I also know my limitations at the moment.

    Thanks so much for your help and wisdom,
    Last edited: Jul 14, 2008
  2. asher

    asher Chicken Enabler Extraordinaire

    Jan 26, 2007
    Mountains of NC
    He bit you? Yes, I consider that aggressive.

    I don't have room or want for mean roos here. He may not be mean to the hens later, but do you really want a roo that is mean to you and that you feel wary walking in to a cage with?
  3. MissPrissy

    MissPrissy Crowing

    May 7, 2007
    Forks, Virginia
    Trade places with the cockeral. If a big ole foot was invading your space and you felt threatened what would you do? Get the foot before it got you? I would bite it too. Most reactions are learned begavior to actions in the environment.

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