Mean Rooster when mating

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by CGilbert, Nov 11, 2015.

  1. CGilbert

    CGilbert Chillin' With My Peeps

    1,083
    117
    158
    Aug 2, 2015
    Spirit Lake, ID
    I am new to chicken raising, as of this year (for the most part).
    My King Rooster (5 and a half month old Ameraucana) is rather harsh with my 1 yr old hen (also Ameraucana). She sounds like she's dieing when he grabs the back of her head and just jumps on top. She does not seem like she is liking him at all and attempts to run from him consistently. She seems to be the only one he is fond of. I haven't seen him mate with any others... I think he started mating about a week ago. For the time being, until I get some suggestions and direction, I have separated him and put him in the spare coop.
    Will he become gentler? Will she eventually warm to him? She's rather tiny and possibly a runt. I have a 6 month old Ameraucana hen that is larger than her.

    Any suggestions are graciously appreciated. I really do love the way he looks and am not fond of the idea of putting him in freezer camp. If that's what needs to be done though, I might just use him in the spring to produce chicks.
     
  2. Skylercarr

    Skylercarr Chillin' With My Peeps

    130
    7
    51
    Jul 14, 2015
    Sometimes roosters will choose a favorite and as he gets older he will most likely try and mate her more. She may or may not get get fond of your rooster.you can always make him his own bachelor pad. Your hens will thank you although your rooster will not be very happy. But the if your hens are happy they will lay more.
     
  3. LRH97

    LRH97 Chillin' With My Peeps

    988
    126
    171
    Jul 29, 2013
    Southern Illinois
    Have you had a roo in with the hens before? If not, they may not be used to being bred. Chicken mating is not at all graceful, and some hens just scream bloody murder. Usually, once the hens get used to it, the process goes a little smoother. There are some roos that are too rough though. My rule of thumb is if it draws blood, it is too rough. It is common for a roo to pick a "favorite" too. If things don't go smoother and you're uncomfortable with your roo, the only way to correct it is removing him from the flock. As Skylercarr said, a bachelor pad (I never suggest keeping a solitary bird though), the soup pot, or maybe even post him on craigslist.
     
  4. CGilbert

    CGilbert Chillin' With My Peeps

    1,083
    117
    158
    Aug 2, 2015
    Spirit Lake, ID
    The "Big Coop" is currently housing everyone. They've all been together for the last month or so. They were separated into different coops before that, but I was hoping they could hang out for the winter.
    2 - 1 yr old hens (Ameraucana)
    1 - 6 month old pullet (Ameraucana)
    1 - 5 month old cock (Ameraucana)
    1 - 4 month old pullet (Dorking/Silkie)
    1 - 4 month old cockerel (Dorking/Silkie)
    4 - 3 month old cockerels (leghorn/delaware) (2 of which are named Thanksgiving and Christmas)
    1 - 3 month old pullet (leghorn/delaware)

    The 5 month old and 4 month old cockerels have just recently found their voices. The 2x 1 yr old hens were just added a week and a half ago. The 5 month old cock and 6 month old pullet have been together for a few months and do fine together. The 5 month old cock seems to get along fine with everyone.. except the one hen.
     
  5. Jesusfreak101

    Jesusfreak101 Chillin' With My Peeps

    2,020
    163
    181
    Sep 2, 2015
    Texas
    My Coop
    You may need more hens that are sexually matured for him.
     
  6. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Let It Snow Premium Member

    18,381
    7,404
    516
    Jul 16, 2015
    central Wisconsin
    You are going to start hearing a lot more screaming from your hens soon with that many roosters, I would pick one I like an pull the rest, it's normal for younger ones to scream because the rooster is ready for mating before the hens are, as they mature the hens become more accepting of mating, that's why I usually separate out any young roosters who makes my girls scream. Making the older hens scream is rude and being a bully, I wouldn't keep that rooster.
     
  7. LRH97

    LRH97 Chillin' With My Peeps

    988
    126
    171
    Jul 29, 2013
    Southern Illinois
    I agree. One roo to every 10 or so pullets is a good number. Like oldhenlikesdogs said, pick one and pull the rest. I'd go with a younger one. It's better to have a roo that is closer to the age of your youngest girls rather than being a lot older than them. That way more of your hens will be ready to mate and your younger girls will have a little more time to mature. Also, as mentioned above, it sounds like that roo may be a bit of a bully, especially if you recently added that Ameraucana girl.
     
  8. azygous

    azygous True BYC Addict

    10,840
    4,318
    501
    Dec 11, 2009
    Colorado Rockies
    To answer your questions about whether cockerels will mellow with age and not be as harsh, yes, they do, but not until they're over a year old and closer to two. And yes, the pullets will become more comfortable with the mating ritual, and soon they will sense the presence of the roo and will automatically squat for him, allowing for a quick and smooth an efficient mating.

    Meanwhile, there's no harm done to the cockerel or the flock by segregating him. This is how I've typically handled the problem of aggressive little roos. They are usually quite content with a small space adjacent to the run as long as they can see the hens and talk to them. I've recently had one such cockerel spend his days outside the run free-ranging, and at roosting time, he quickly learned to meet me at the door of the coop to be let inside. He was also quick to learn that he was to go outside first thing come morning, and he was very accommodating about it.

    However, I ended up with three unexpected cockerels this summer, and I found homes for two of them. It's been my experience that keeping more than one rooster is simply much more trouble than it's worth, and one rooster to nineteen hens is more than adequate.
     
  9. chicksurreal

    chicksurreal Chillin' With My Peeps

    2,558
    304
    226
    Dec 3, 2013
    Arizona
    I've noticed that the young cockerels just learning how to tread are less than graceful and maybe even a bit desperate. It takes them a little bit of time to learn the best way to get the job done.

    Mine have mostly gotten better with age, they mellow out and tend to be more efficient as they gain experience, sometimes I have a couple of boys in the bachelor pad until they mature. Five and a half months is very young, he has a ways to go before he's a mature rooster. If you like him, give him some time to grow up and see how he does.
     
    1 person likes this.
  10. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

    36,820
    10,625
    686
    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop
    Agrees that getting rid of all but one would help immensely.....multiple males, especially young ones, almost always create a chaotic, competitive environment.
    Or at least put all the males in a separate enclosure from the females for now.
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by