Looking for advice with rooster drama

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by wizardmt70, Aug 30, 2016.

  1. wizardmt70

    wizardmt70 In the Brooder

    Apr 16, 2015
    I will try to keep this as short as possible. Last spring my daughter ended up with three chicks from her 4-H club. I grew up on a farm but never really was too involved with raising the chickens other than just gathering the eggs. So I did as much research as I could and after one of the chicks died we ended up with one roo and one hen. Those two got along very well and we had very few issues. This spring I decided to increase our flock by buying three more “pullets” from the local feed store. As my luck would have it one of those pullets ended up as cockerel. Now we have an older rooster and hen as well as a younger rooster with two younger hens (30 wks). I tried to talk my wife into getting rid of one of the roosters but she wouldn’t have any of that. Everything was still going pretty well until we went on vacation last week and they spent several days "cooped" up. Now the younger rooster has started aggressively mating the oldest hen to the point where her feathers are ragged and missing on her back and she’s starting to do everything she can to avoid him including not going back in the coop at night. My suggestions are to get rid of the younger rooster. My wife however wants to try a couple other options. 1. Being give it time to work itself out. 2. Buy a “saddle” for the hen. 3. Get two more “older” hens.

    My questions are:

    Will this behavior change over time? Is the younger roo just being a dumb clumsy teenager and will eventually get better at this? If so, how long will that take?

    Is the saddle effective or just a band aide that could cause other issues and not really deter the damage?

    Will two more (giving us a total of 5) hens be enough to keep two roosters?

    Thanks in advance for your expert advice!

  2. TheKindaFarmGal

    TheKindaFarmGal Free Ranging

    May 4, 2016
    Somewhere in the Universe
    Pretty normal behaviour for a young rooster, but hopefully he'll calm down. I've never used the saddle, but from what I've read, it works pretty well. You definitely need more hens to be able to keep two rooster, I would say at least three more and see how they get along.

    Unfortunately, if nothing works, you might want to rehome the young rooster.

    Also, it isn't wise to coop up two roosters and three hens together for days at a time, especially when one is young. They'll go crazy. How big is your coop? A lot of the cockerel's behaviour was probably related to that.
  3. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

    Jun 18, 2010
    Southern Oregon

    Spouses can be such a pain sometimes [​IMG]

    I agree, getting rid of the youngster would be best. But, you can't do that right now.

    Your wife does need to see that being responsible for the animals means looking after all of their well being, including that hen. I've never used a saddle, so can't respond to that. But if she's actively hiding from him and that resistive to mating, I'm thinking it's going to be simply cosmetic. You can try it and see how it goes, but I don't see it changing the behaviors involved at all.

    If she's determined to keep the young rooster, maybe he (or both the males) need a bachelor pad. Even 5 hens for 2 relatively young roosters can cause a lot of issues.
  4. I would get rid of the young Rooster myself also.....He is young and establishing himself as top Rooster...Your poor hens will hate life being constantly bred by the Roos.

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