More Pullets?

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by Rachealx4, Mar 26, 2018.

  1. Rachealx4

    Rachealx4 Songster

    118
    210
    126
    Mar 11, 2018
    East Central Missouri
    Hi everyone! I'm looking for your opinions and experiences. I currently have 8 orpington chicks that are about 4-5 weeks old. I'm almost certain that I have 2 cockerels in the group. There are 2 that already have some red in their combs and if I had to guess age based on feathering I would guess the 2 to be younger, even though they are all supposed to be the same age.
    Anyway, in the event that I am correct, that will leave 3 girls for each boy. Should I get more girls? Do I have to section off the coop or can wait and see how it goes?
    My coop is 10x12 and I have the space to make a run as big as I need to. I would like to try to minimize potential problems and I don't want to set my girls up to receive so much attention that it's bad for them.
    TIA!
     
  2. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Waiting on a Fresh Garden Salad

    32,492
    42,430
    1,172
    Jul 16, 2015
    central Wisconsin
    You can get more girls, I would brood them separately until they are old enough to integrate. Either way you will still need to remove at least one rooster for the comfort of your girls.
     
    Brahma Chicken5000 and Rachealx4 like this.
  3. Rachealx4

    Rachealx4 Songster

    118
    210
    126
    Mar 11, 2018
    East Central Missouri
    @oldhenlikesdogs So it's easier on the girls when there's two rosters to keep the groups separated. Right? (Don't judge. I'm a blonde. Lol)
     
    Brahma Chicken5000 likes this.
  4. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Waiting on a Fresh Garden Salad

    32,492
    42,430
    1,172
    Jul 16, 2015
    central Wisconsin
    I'm blonde too, so no judgement. 2 roosters will be too many for your number of hens. They will be constantly mated by one, two would give them no peace. Generally a large breed rooster can cover 12-15 hens. Two roosters will constantly be going at each other. I never recommend 2 roosters because they only focus on each other.
     
    Brahma Chicken5000 and Rachealx4 like this.
  5. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Free Ranging

    23,000
    9,181
    667
    Feb 2, 2009
    Southeast Louisiana
    Why do you want any roosters? The only reason you need one is if you want fertile eggs. Everything else is personal preference. There are plenty of people that would not have a flock without a rooster, there are a lot of people that don't want a rooster anywhere near their flock. The hens can be extremely happy either way. People often care about this more than the hens do.

    My suggestion is to keep as few roosters as you can and still meet your goals. That is not because you are guaranteed problems with more roosters, just that problems are more likely. I don't know your goals so I can't say for sure, but I strongly suggest you consider 0 or 1 and lean toward 0.

    Can you post photos of the two in question? At that age we might be able to help you sex them. Maybe. We need shots of the head showing combs and wattles. A profile shot showing legs and posture could help a lot also.

    My general suggestion is to not do anything dramatic until you are sure of what you are dealing with. Orps can sometimes be a bit challenging to sex but 5 weeks it is often possible.
     
    Rachealx4 likes this.
  6. Rachealx4

    Rachealx4 Songster

    118
    210
    126
    Mar 11, 2018
    East Central Missouri
    @Ridgerunner A rooster would be nice to help watch over the flock and of course to grow the flock. I hadn't intended to start with any, but if I have one (or 2) they are already here so I'll adjust.
    These are the 2 suspects
    20180326_170007.jpg 20180326_170301.jpg
    Popeye is a ham and in the middle of everything! 20180326_165942.jpg 20180326_170401.jpg 20180326_170206.jpg
    Colonel is a tad camera shy... 20180326_170144.jpg
    Next to a sister 20180326_170148.jpg
    20180326_170421.jpg
    Finally overhead pictures. No poofy butts. 20180326_170627.jpg 20180326_170621.jpg
    The girls have poofy butts.. 20180326_170644.jpg
     
  7. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Waiting on a Fresh Garden Salad

    32,492
    42,430
    1,172
    Jul 16, 2015
    central Wisconsin
    In Orpingtons the boys will feather out slower than the girls, and the combs will be obviously pink by 5-6 weeks. You are probably correct about them. A few more weeks will confirm it.
     
    Better Than Rubies and Rachealx4 like this.
  8. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Free Ranging

    23,000
    9,181
    667
    Feb 2, 2009
    Southeast Louisiana
    I think both are boys, mainly because of the combs.
     
    Rachealx4 likes this.
  9. Folly's place

    Folly's place Free Ranging

    13,446
    12,738
    716
    Sep 13, 2011
    southern Michigan
    They do look like cockerels! Of course you need more chicks! It's about 'chicken math'! You may end up with one cockerel, or none, depending on their behavior as they grow, but still, why not more birds?
    Enabler alert!
    How about EEs, Marans, and Sussex? Variety is good!
    I think cockerels are best raised NOT as pets, so I don't play with, hand feed, or coddle them. The cockerels should respect your space and get out of your way, and not think bad thoughts at any humans. The 'friendly' cockerels tend to develop into aggressive jerks often, so be aware.
    Mary
     
    Rachealx4 likes this.
  10. Rachealx4

    Rachealx4 Songster

    118
    210
    126
    Mar 11, 2018
    East Central Missouri
    :yesss::woot

    Thanks for the heads up! I've been reading up on jerky roosters. If that happens I hope I can convince the offender that messing with people is not a good idea. If that doesn't work.. well.... it will have to be dealt with
     
    Last edited: Mar 26, 2018

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by: