Necessary to have rooster to keep peace in mixed flock?

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by SIMZ, Apr 25, 2016.

  1. SIMZ

    SIMZ Chillin' With My Peeps

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    My rooster has a persistent leg problem that is starting to affect his mobility.

    My flock has several broody hens ready to hatch and I will also be integrating young chickens into the flock. I've found my roosters do a great job keeping the peace this time of year and keeping everyone in line - especially the up and coming cockerels.

    Since my rooster doesn't seem like he'll be able to keep up, should I look for a new adult rooster to add to the flock, or will my flock be fine without an adult rooster until one of the chick cockerels matures?

    Thanks!
     
    Last edited: Apr 25, 2016
  2. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Chicken Obsessed

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    I also like a rooster around to help keep the peace, but the flock will probably be OK without a dominant rooster. The biggest problem time will probably be when the cockerel is maturing enough to want to be “the man” but hasn’t matured enough to win the respect of the hens. He may get beat up a lot by the older hens or he may get pretty physical with them, especially the dominant hen. I’ve done this a few times, not many. Usually it’s not too bad but it can get exciting down there occasionally. They do grow out of it.

    If you bring in a new adult rooster, it may go fine. But you also may get a pretty nasty rooster, you just don’t know how they will interact until you get one. Most of the time it should be OK but someone may be getting rid of a problem child. Then there is the biosecurity/quarantine issue.

    When I’m in that situation I raise the cockerel, I don’t bring one in.
     
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  3. SIMZ

    SIMZ Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks, Ridgerunner! That was kind of my gut feeling already - especially with the potential of introducing disease. It's good to hear that you have experienced it.

    We'll just run with it and see how it goes. I know in a few months I'll be up to my eyeballs in cockerels anyway. I've never actually been in the position of possibly not having a rooster before.
     
  4. SIMZ

    SIMZ Chillin' With My Peeps

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    UPDATE: Not having a rooster has been no problem! The flock is very peaceful and quieter than it's ever been. The new chicks have integrated just fine, as have the broody hens and their chicks. One interesting change has been that the hens squat when I come up and I can actually get close to more of them than usual. There is a hen that seem to be taking charge, and she follows me around and stands by me like my head roosters always has. Finally, my new little cockerels are hardly crowing at 12 weeks, which is another unusual occurrence.

    I do miss having an adult rooster around and love to hear the occasional crow, but I think I could get used to this. I'm sure my neighbors could, too. [​IMG]
     

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