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My silkie stalks me

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by schatze, Nov 20, 2014.

  1. schatze

    schatze Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have a bearded silkie rooster who will be a year old next month. Whenever I go outside, he stalks me whenever my back is turned to him. I recorded it, and I admit it's funny because of how he looks, he's so tiny and fluffy, but at the same time it's not funny because when he gets me, it really hurts! He jumps high, grabs, and stabs. He only does this to me and only if I'm alone. If anyone else is outside including people across the greenbelt, he won't do it. That's why I had to record it--no one would believe me. He'll stalk me, and then when I turn around to look at him he pretends to be eating or looking around. Then, when I start walking again, he follows again. What does this mean? If he was a bigger rooster, it could be really scary.[​IMG]
     
  2. azygous

    azygous Chicken Obsessed

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    Got a big kick out of your video of the spunky little lad. He looks like a toy, but his behavior is not to be taken lightly. He's flogging you, and that means he's decided you may be a threat, but what's worse, he believes you can be trifled with.

    You need to set this cheeky little boy straight. Never, ever turn your back on him and walk away from him. That reinforces his notion that he's intimidating you and is driving you away.

    Next thing to do, when he comes up to you like that, is grab him real fast and push his beak into the dirt and hold him there until he calms down. You need to do this every time he tries to flog you, even though it's like getting hit with a fluffy beach ball. As he flies at you, be ready to catch him as you would a soccer ball being thrown to you. Then put him down flat on the ground and pin him there until he quits struggling. This will begin to establish you have dominance over him.

    Lastly, try to examine your own behavior. What might you be doing to give him the impression you're a threat? Sometimes, sudden movements will set off a roo. Maybe you've been handling the hens and they've been putting up a fuss when you do it? See if you can figure out why he feels threatened, and it can help change his behavior to change yours.

    Or he may simply be feeling overwhelmed by his hormones, and he will calm down over this next year. But you do need to discipline him, and get some manners into him.
     
  3. schatze

    schatze Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I was afraid of something like that. I don't know why I'd be a threat, in fact, I've saved him from getting picked on by the other silkies in the past--he'd be sweet to me for days after that and would even bring me a worm. I have almost 40 birds, and he's the only one like this. One of my silkie roos used to outright attack everyone head on, but he grew out of it.

    I collect the eggs. Could that be way? When I collect the eggs, the silkies all give me the stink eye even though I have no silkie hens after the hawks had their way.

    I'll do what you suggested. Little guy is fast, so it may be hard. Plus, I'm really short, so when he flies up at my face it's scary!
     
  4. azygous

    azygous Chicken Obsessed

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    You can do it! I know you can! Just pretend he's a ball and catch him. I used to do it all the time when my Cochin roo would fling himself at me in an attempt to make me leave him alone. He literally played right into my hands![​IMG]

    Roosters, I expect even Silkies, are rather complex beings and they can be quite manipulative. He's obviously trying to forge some sort of relationship with you by bringing you worms. My roosters all would do that. It's not really that they're feeling generous towards you and want you to share in something good. They're trying to manipulate you into being subject to their dominance. You shouldn't take the worm, instead say thank you, you must eat that yourself.

    Roosters can be a lot like dogs in respect to needing boundaries to feel secure and happy. In stalking you and flogging you he's attempting to establish those boundaries himself so that he dominates you. He will be even happier if you were to take over the responsibility of that yourself. It would only be a few days of intense discipline if all goes well, with a refresher course every week or so.

    Be aware you won't be able to turn your back on him for well over a year from now, even if he seems to respond well to discipline. But I can almost guarantee you he will be a really sweet little roo by the time he's two.
     
  5. schatze

    schatze Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Wow! He's always been a spunky little guy since hatching. Even at 2 weeks old, he and Pileus (another silkie roo who hatched at the same time) were fighting each other in the brooder! Nimby doesn't mix with the other silkies (he's the only splash, the others are pure white), so he tends to keep to himself and crow. Dagger, my big rooster in the video, tends to be the only other rooster who is somewhat nice to him. Only 2 of my hens even acknowledge him. He is my only silkie who'll try to mix with the other breeds of chicken.

    He's such a handful, but I love him.
     
  6. azygous

    azygous Chicken Obsessed

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    Then he's worth the trouble of disciplining. I had two roos raised together from babies who had severe behavior problems. Most people would have culled both. One was a vicious biter, and the other was so afraid of me, every time I approached, he would have a meltdown, flying apart at the seams.

    After several months of working with the two individulally, they became transformed, and they turned into lovely little lads that made me proud.

    Have courage, be consistent, and yours will make you proud, too.
     
  7. Free Feather

    Free Feather Chillin' With My Peeps

    I had a Golden Laced Wyandotte cockerel I rescued who did this. He would stalk me, then peck the ground innocently when I turned around. I did not know what to do, so I threw things at him. He was killed by a mystery day-time predator before I actually got attacked, but he was getting there. I will keep the catching in mind if I have to deal with this again.
     

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