Mixed Flock questions

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by riqui1, Dec 19, 2009.

  1. riqui1

    riqui1 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Okay, I need to show my lack of experience and my lack of knowledge here and see if I can get some answers. I hope I don't come across as too awful bad... lol

    I have a coop that now contains 5 silkies from my first hatch on the fourth of July. I believe that in those five silkies, I have ended up with 4 roosters and one hen! I know, for a fact, that one is a rooster, as I have watched him crowing. He started a few weeks ago and then he became silent. The other one that is gray/splash (?) hasn't crowed, that I have witnessed, but he has the same red wattle (?) and is about the same size. I also believe that my two black ones are roosters, as well. They don't have a red wattle, but they have a large black, bumpy "growth" on their faces where the others have wattles. I also believe that they are roosters from the way they treat one another - dropping their wings and coming up on each other sideways. I have one little white silkie that I believe is my only hen from this group. She has no wattle of any kind on her face and she is quite a bit smaller than the other four. My problem is that they are constantly at her. Sometimes it seems as if it is a mating thing, but other times, they are just pecking at her sides and such. She spends much of her time cowering in corners or trying to hide herself. She spends most of her time between my feet, while I am in the coop and would rather me hold her the whole time I am out there. I intend to get rid of, at least, two of the roosters, but there isn't much of a market for them in my area.

    Also in the coop, from my second hatch around August 7, I have four Guineas, one Araucana (sp?) rooster and one silkie. In the beginning, these 6 were inseparable. Now, the Araucana and the Guineas "run together" and the little silkie is no longer accepted by anyone. This is another splash silkie and I am hoping it is a hen. It is also smaller and doesn't appear to be developing anything on her face. lol

    My questions are as follows:

    If the while silkie is a hen, is there a reason that the other four are picking on her? Is there a better way for me to tell the roosters from the hens, if they aren't crowing or laying eggs yet? I want to get rid of the roosters, as there are just too many (if all four of them are roosters), but don't want to get rid of hens. If that one single silkie from the second hatch is a hen, with the silkie rooster that I keep see her as a chicken to mate with eventually? She just seems like a total outcast right now and I feel horrible about it. If I were to go get Araucana pullets, will the Araucana rooster that I have right now recognize them as "his breed" after hanging with the Guineas for so long? lol Will the Araucana rooster mate with the Guineas or the Silkies? What is the best way for me to introduce these Araucana pullets? They are about the same age as my rooster.

    Whew...that was a few more than I thought I had. I hope that there is someone out there with some advice, as I am not quite sure what to do here! lol Thanks!
     
  2. spotsplus

    spotsplus Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:Sounds like the "boys" are picking on the one "girl". The dropping wings and sidways thing is a sure sign of a rooster courting behaviour. I'd take the splash silkie from the second group and put her with the little white silkie hen and keep them seperate till you can move some boys out. Hopefully they can bond and create more of a united front when back with the group. I've not had guineas before but I would guess that no matter what the breed a chicken hen is your Araucana rooster will breed them. I don't know that a Guinea would even allow a rooster to breed her. As for introducing the new hens to your rooster - add them to the coop at night or him to thiers (wherever you plan to keep them). Next morning keep an eye on them. Your rooster may be a gentleman and just get right along with the new harem or he may try to be bossy and you'll see a lot of squabbling going on as the hens tell "mr. wonderful" whether they will agree to breed with him or not. [​IMG]

    T
     
  3. davidb

    davidb Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I thiink I would take the white one out of the pen with the 4 roos
     
  4. riqui1

    riqui1 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    "The dropping wings and sidways thing is a sure sign of a rooster courting behaviour." - Would one rooster do this towards another or would the rooster only do this towards a hen?

    I have listed two that I KNOW are roosters on craigslist. I am hoping that they go quickly, but am afraid they won't...
     
  5. spotsplus

    spotsplus Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:I see roos do that courting behaviour to all birds. Other roos seem to take offence and they fight or run away. Particularly I've seen the dance when it's a new bird being introduced [​IMG]
    T
     
  6. riqui1

    riqui1 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Well, I have someone interested in one of the Silkie roos, so hopefully that will pan out. Then I will just have 2 more to get rid of! Ugh! I am working on introducing a Silver Sebright into the coop and it isn't going well for her either. She came as part of a trio of Sebrights, but she was always kept separate from the hen and rooster that are a pair, as the hen beats the tar out of her. I had to put them together to transport them and boy...the hen beats the tar out of her!! I have been trying to work her into the coop slowly, but my Araucana doesn't seem to care too much for her either. We are just starting though, so hopefully he'll lighten up soon! I am running out of places to keep chickens (and I think my dh is getting a wee bit impatient). This cute little girl is currently sleeping in my 14yo son's bedroom; he loves it! lol I think that the biggest problem is that she is just so darn small, I am afraid to leave her out there alone with them!! Maybe my son and I are just being big babies about it, but she is so lovable, I would hate for any of them to hurt her. The Silkie roos were actually standing up to the Araucana and defending her, but then taking a peck at her after! Aaahhh.... lol

    I think that I may convince my dh to build me a few tractor/coops. I will take my poor, single little hen Silkie and separate her off with my favorite roo. Then I will put this single Sebright in one, either with a silkie roo or alone. Then another one for the Sebright pair... Oh my word!! How do you all do this, when you have so many birds?! lol
     
  7. spotsplus

    spotsplus Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:LOL- keep making more coops! [​IMG]
     

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