My Rooster is brutalizing one hen in the flock!

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by chickenpotter, Mar 17, 2017.

  1. chickenpotter

    chickenpotter Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have a Speckled Sussex/Gold Brabanter cross rooster. He is 7 1/2 months old. He has been a pretty nice boy - didn't even start crowing until he was 6 months old. He seems to be nice to all of the hens except one. I noticed some of her feathers on her back were missing a couple of weeks ago. I thought she had been attacked by a hawk. Then I started noticing that she has separated herself from the flock. Finally I saw Fly, the rooster, jump on her and not even try to mate with her. He just jumped up and down on her back and pulled feathers out and the poor girl was squatting for him and everything! Then he chased her away. I have witnessed this daily for the last week or so. If I am out with the flock I'll try to stop him from doing it. But I can't stay out there all day.
    He doesn't treat any of the other hens like that. What is going on? He really goes after her with a vengeance. I ordered a hen saddle for her so she can possibly grow her feathers back.
    What should I do? Is there anything I can do? She is definitely low bird in the pecking order. I'm just concerned because she is getting so beat up and has also lost weight because she doesn't get to the food as often as she used to. She was once a very bossy girl.
    What gives with this bad boy?
     
  2. KingOfTheCoop02

    KingOfTheCoop02 Out Of The Brooder

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    You could separate the rooster for awhile so he might forget about it and the hens could get back to normal. I would also strongly advise against hen saddles since they may sound good but the truth is they just provide a haven for bugs and mites and lice and other nasties.
     
  3. drumstick diva

    drumstick diva Still crazy after all these years. Premium Member

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    Never a good reason to keep a bad roo. Dump him or invite him to dinner as the quest of honor. Why allow him to keep doing this? Put him in solitaire or rescue the poor hen .

    There is a glut of roosters on the market and even good free ones. If you feel you must have a rooster, get one that is good to his hens and respectful of humans.
     
  4. KingOfTheCoop02

    KingOfTheCoop02 Out Of The Brooder

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    I agree with drumstick diva - there is no reason to keep a bad rooster.
     
  5. centrarchid

    centrarchid Chicken Obsessed

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    Jumping the gun here with only a partial picture. Hen separating herself from flock may be do to a health issue or her being broody. The disappearance would be consistent with a broody cycle that failed. Since she is soliciting him to cover her, that indicates she is not currently broody. I would isolate her and watch carefully for subtle behavioral issues.

    Two situations I see result in a rooster driving off a hen; first she is not part of his harem here she usually attacked as much as mated, and second where hen is somehow in poor health. Neither is as reflection on the quality of the rooster.
     
    1 person likes this.
  6. chickenpotter

    chickenpotter Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thank you for the advice. I'll try that first- separating him for a few days. Also thanks for the advice about the hen saddles. Wish me luck.
     
  7. chickenpotter

    chickenpotter Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I do like having a rooster because my birds are free range and we live next to the woods. Our main daytime predators are hawks. However, if he doesn't come around, the girls do pretty well on their own. Thank you for your advice. BYC has been such a help to me with it's great community of chicken keeping experience!
     
  8. TheTwoRoos

    TheTwoRoos Chillin' With My Peeps

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    you mentioned she use to be a very bossy girl.That can cause problems when you have a dominate roo,i'm having your same problem with a cockerel about the same age as yours.He only attacks one of the dominant hens.

    Could it be she is sick?

    Your rooster sound like a good one,but I would defiantly seperte her,or even get rid of her,he could kill her.
     
    Last edited: Mar 18, 2017
  9. chickenpotter

    chickenpotter Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Noted! And yes, I do agree. I just got rid of one last summer who turned aggressive. Not keeping this one unless he straightens out. Thanks King of the Coop!
     
  10. TheTwoRoos

    TheTwoRoos Chillin' With My Peeps

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    It could be your hen that is the problem.
     

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