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Least aggressive roosters?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Donnigan, May 13, 2016.

  1. Donnigan

    Donnigan Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I've had Rhode Island Reds 3 Marans 6 Ameracaunas 3 Leghorns 1 buff Orpington 1 Bantam and all were aggressive! What breeds would you recommend? Thanks
     
  2. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Sits With Chickens Premium Member

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    It might be in the way you are raising them. I've had all different breeds of roosters and none have been aggressive. I don't think there's a right breed, they all have potential. My advice is to not handle so much and show no fear.
     
  3. OrganicFarmWife

    OrganicFarmWife Chillin' With My Peeps

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    https://www.backyardchickens.com/t/167570/best-breed-choice-for-friendly-rooster/30#post_17001734
    I had this problem too and found advice on this thread. DO NOT go with Barr Rocks, I am sure there are exceptions but my Rooster attacked my 1yr old and I have heard many similar stories from others with that breed. I think to get a truly good Rooster you may want to go through a breeder, not a hatchery.
    I am going to try Jersey Giants, I have heard good things about them, but was warned that they can get too big for the standard sized hens.
     
  4. Donnigan

    Donnigan Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I was thinking about Jersey Giants also i love the hen i have! I've also heard good things about Faverolles. :)
     
  5. OrganicFarmWife

    OrganicFarmWife Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I will say others have agreed with oldhenlikesdogs how you raise them does seem to contribute. But my Rooster was never handled once they were past baby chick stage, my birds are farm animals, not pets, my children never pestered the birds (not that they are angels of just too young) and they were not afraid of them until the attack happened. I know several others with the same story, some roosters just go bad, and while not the only factor some breeds are more prone to attacking then others. I have heard New Hampshire are bad, Barr Rock, the Road Island red doesn't surprise me.
     
  6. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Sits With Chickens Premium Member

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    Most roosters will attack children due to their erratic movements and screaming, as well as size of them. I don't think any rooster should free range when children are involved, you just never know. I have found my barnevelder roosters to be not as bold and easily dominated by other roosters, so probably a good candidate. Mine aren't exactly pets either, I'm an old country gal myself.
     
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  7. speckledhen

    speckledhen Intentional Solitude Premium Member

    It's not a breed, per se, not even how you raise them, generally. Any line of a breed that is bred for temperament will give you better, more easygoing males. I have a line of BR males that a couple generations back, I had to breed in my Delaware rooster, Isaac, because I did not have access to the proper breeding male (killed by a snake). Every male from Isaac is easygoing, friendly, easy to handle, just exemplary.

    The truth about handling is this-it's what I have found out of all the males I've had in several breeds, not just one. If you handle them as chicks, if you don't handle them as chicks, that does not change their genetic tendencies to either be aggressive or non-human-aggressive. It only brings out what is already in his genetic makeup. For instance, a cockerel who is genetically programmed to be aggressive will be that way, no matter what. If you baby him, he'll just be all that much more comfortable taking you on as an opponent sooner. If you don't, he'll still be attacking you when the aggression begins to flow.

    Hatcheries have bred aggressive strains of males that usually would be considered easygoing, overall. Again, not the breed, it's the breeding of the line/strain. I started with an aggressive strain of Delawares from McMurray parentage. Sold them all early. Didn't want more. Breeder talked me into hatching from her heritage line bred for temperament and I got Isaac, best rooster you could hope for. Suede, my 14 lb Blue Orpington, never bit or flogged anyone in his entire almost 6 years of life. Sons and grandsons from those two males are almost all the same way.

    I also have a theory that's never been proven wrong, IMO. The more intelligent males are the ones who will not bite/flog the bringer of food and water. They are subordinate to their human keepers and never challenge them. Biting as a youngster does not count as true aggression, only what happens when the hormones kick in.


    This rooster, Isaac, met this teenage girl this weekend the video was filmed. She just went into his coop and came out carrying him! He had really never seen many people other than my husband and myself and her mother, my best friend, on a previous visit. And he was fine with anything she did around him. She is the daughter of my best friend. Isaac was one of the smartest roosters I ever owned. His grandson is my current breeding male, 2 years old, just as sweet as his grandpa was.
    [​IMG]


    Breed from the best, cull the rest-that means cull any male who shows aggression, do not reproduce him, period.
     
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  8. OrganicFarmWife

    OrganicFarmWife Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Well hopefully the Jersey Giant proves good. Freerange is all I am set up for, and I think my Barr Rock Hens would revolt if I caged them too long. Last time I had warnings that he was going bad, I just hated to cull a bird that had not actually done anything wrong. I will not be so patient this time.
     
  9. speckledhen

    speckledhen Intentional Solitude Premium Member

    Absolutely! I've said this so many times and folks keep thinking their rooster is like a family dog. Not so. All it takes is one well-placed flog to take out a child's eye if the child is toddler stage or not much over.


    I wanted to add that generally, when a rooster is at the age he has hens to watch out for, it's time to back off and give him space to do his job, even if he was your baby boy up until then. That's for any male, no matter his temperament.
     
    Last edited: May 13, 2016
  10. Donnigan

    Donnigan Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I will say others have agreed with oldhenlikesdogs how you raise them does seem to contribute. But my Rooster was never handled once they were past baby chick stage, my birds are farm animals, not pets, my children never pestered the birds (not that they are angels of just too young) and they were not afraid of them until the attack happened. I know several others with the same story, some roosters just go bad, and while not the only factor some breeds are more prone to attacking then others. I have heard New Hampshire are bad, Barr Rock, the Road Island red



    I never touched the Leghorn. I almost wonder if the Leghorns aggressiveness was from genetics. It was actually a Leghorn Rhode Island Red Cross. I had one hen left after a raccoon killed all mine. She moved to my neighbors hen house. A few months later she moved back into my barn and hatched 8 chicks. My neighbors had a white leghorn rooster that was EVIL he would fly onto my property and attack me( i was 7). 3 of the chicks turned out to be roosters we gave away 2 of them for being aggressive. The one we kept we loved he was wonderful at first. Then he started to attack us. At first a broom would keep him away but then he started to get braver and would attack no matter what so we traded him for a hen on craiglist. I think it has a lot to do with the breed. It seems to me that if the breed if known for excellent egg production the rooster will be aggressive. Leghorns, Rhode Island Red, Barred Rock, Ameracauna. So being handled was not his problem.Is your child okay? Rooster attacks can hurt!
     
    Last edited: May 13, 2016

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