Managing different breeds Help?!

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by CrunchyMeatEatr, Aug 23, 2013.

  1. CrunchyMeatEatr

    CrunchyMeatEatr Out Of The Brooder

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    this is my second year raising chicken. Last year I started with four (2 Barred Rocks, 2 Rhode Island Reds). I lost one of the Barred Rocks I suspect to the neighbors dog but never found it so my wife likes to think it went wild! This year we decided to expand, we bought two Light Brahmas one of which turned out to be a roo and became dinner. We also got 2 ducks, and 6 more chicks from a local breeder. The 6 chicks are of questionable breed but I think one is a Dominique hen ( very large same coloring as the barred rock) Three of the other chicks turned out to be what I believe are orphington Roos and the last 2 look like Easter egger hens.

    Anyway I don't plan on breeding at this time so I plan on processing the two remaining Roos as the neighbors dog killed the third. My problem is that the huge hen which I believe is a Dominique won't stop harassing the smaller hens even the Roos which she is also bigger than. It has gotten to the point that one of the hens keeps jumping the fence each day and coming back each night and it's only a matter of time before the neighbors dog gets it too. The other two hens (Easter an brahma) along with the two Roos only leave the coop to get food or water and when they do leave the Dominique often chases them until the run back into the coop and I worry they are not getting enough food and water.

    So the question is, Is it a matter of size because she is so much bigger? Will they eventually work things out or should she become dinner along with the two Roos? I like the large eggs she has started laying but as things are now either she will have to go or the other two will ( she leaves the 3 original girls alone as well as the ducks) I've heard the cost vs gain is bad with Dominiques as they eat a ton but I am inexperienced with different breeds an I'm debating whether I should get rid of her or the two smaller hens which so far lay small eggs..

    Next year I plan to increase the laying flock as well as getting 15-20CX birds for meat so I'm trying to keep in mind how they will do with the existing birds so any advice would be appreciated.
     
  2. chfite

    chfite Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I guess the question is do you want to tolerate a bully?

    Chris
     
  3. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

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    You might want to post a pic of your bird. Dominiques are supposed to be smaller, light bodied birds.

    How much space do you have? Overcrowding is always my first thought with behavioral issues.
     
  4. CrunchyMeatEatr

    CrunchyMeatEatr Out Of The Brooder

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    As for bullying I don't mind, until it starts effecting the health of the other birds when they can't get proper nutrition. The run is pretty good size for now ( about 24x40) I plan add a temporary run that can be rotated around the perimeter of the current run once I get more bird. The coop is not as big, but since I haven't had any problems with predators inside the run I keep the door open 24/7 . The size of the coop is approximately 12x4x8 tall with roosts all the way to the top. The bully( maybe Dominique) only uses the bottom roost about 2' off the ground the other hens all roost as high as possible
     
  5. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

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    So not a space issue.........and it's not a size issue, animals don't think that way...........I'd maybe try pulling her out and separating her for a week or so if you're able, then try putting her back in. If that doesn't work, I got nothing else except cull her.
     
    Last edited: Aug 24, 2013
  6. CrunchyMeatEatr

    CrunchyMeatEatr Out Of The Brooder

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    [​IMG] Orphington Roo?

    [​IMG]Dominique? and Light Brahma


    [​IMG]Easter Egger? about the same size as the light Brahma

    [​IMG]Other orphington Roo?( the one in back is lighter in color but otherwise looks very similar they are all hiding in the top of the coop. I think the other easter hen may be gone for good I haven't seen her in about 3 days...

    [​IMG]The "Dominique" and light Brahma are at the top of the pic the bottom three are the old girls the Rhode Island Reds and Barred Rock. She looks a little rough as one of the Rhode Island Reds had an issue with plucking last winter and she hasn't molted yet. The "Dominique" is larger than every other bird I have including the Peking duck.[​IMG]
     
  7. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

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    Your "dom" is actually a mixed breed rooster. He had a barred parent, a straight combed parent, a non barred parent and a non-straight combed parent. That may be your problem, too many roosters. I'd invite him to dinner and see if your flock settles down.
     
    Last edited: Aug 24, 2013
  8. CrunchyMeatEatr

    CrunchyMeatEatr Out Of The Brooder

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    REALLLY!? I'm not too surprised as it does seem to go after the hens and mount them like a rooster. She, or he hasn't displayed any of the more obvious signs of being a roo. No big comb, long curved tail, or mane like the other Roos. I obviously still have a lot to learn when determining sexes. I guess I'm going to have to spend a few hours tomorrow and put some meat in the fridge. All the Roos are around 24 weeks, any suggestions cook them where they aren't so stringy? The first one I processed was good and tender but a little stringy when roasted.
     
  9. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

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    Check the meat bird section, generally low and slow is the way to go with roosters.
     
  10. CrunchyMeatEatr

    CrunchyMeatEatr Out Of The Brooder

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    Great, thanks for the help. Now I just hope the Easter that flew the coop finds her way home...
     

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