New at Management

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by Straykitty2, Jan 9, 2016.

  1. Straykitty2

    Straykitty2 New Egg

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    Jan 5, 2016
    Casa Grande, Arizona
    I'm new at raising any kind of poultry. A friend of a friend needed a new home for an Orpington Rooster and being the animal lover that I am I spoke up and said I'd take him. I named him Randi, he's about 11 months old and I think after a couple of months I've decided that he needs a companion. I have a lot of property for him to roam on but he seems to spend his time wherever I am. He doesn't like to be alone. Is one hen enough to keep Randi company or would 2 be better. I don't really want a whole flock as I have 3 dogs, 6 cats and a Grackle, an Arizona wildlife bird, I've raised for 10 years. I must be doing something right a wildlife bird would never live for 10 years in the wild. So I have plenty to keep me busy as it is. What about temperatures for the rooster and hen. Living in the deserts of Arizona we have 100+ degrees for 4-5 months in the summer. How do chickens handle those kind of temps? Right now it's been unusually cold here and Randi spends most of his time in the house where I keep it about 80 deg. and he seems to be fine with that. I have a place outdoors in the backyard that is covered, not completely enclosed, and I think that would make a nice place for them, but not sure what kind of material I should put down, straw, green hay or something else?

    I'll be reading threads others have posted but would appreciate any advice for a beginner you might have.
     
  2. Folly's place

    Folly's place Chicken Obsessed

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    Welcome! Chickens are flock animals and really do need the company of other chickens. One hen won't do; consider three or four at least! The fresh eggs are wonderful! Chickens, especially big fluffy ones like Randy, don't do well in the heat, so shade and lots of ventilation are going to be important for a coop an pen. A roof and three walls, and hardware cloth and secure fencing, are needed. Bedding can be plant materials, the sings that come for hoe bedding, straw, some hay or whatever. Predator proofing is VERY important! He's a handsome boy, too. Mary
     
  3. azygous

    azygous Chicken Obsessed

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    You're lucky the chicken you adopted is a rooster because they more easily bond with other species, while it's the hens that require a flock for well being. In fact, I've found roosters rival dogs as being pets, and they're almost as friendly and trainable.

    Getting Randi a single hen for "company" isn't going to help, but it will make it very hard on the hen. It will awaken Randi's urges to mate, and he'll probably even go through a personality change, and even might become aggressive toward his humans with a hen present. I wouldn't do it. Besides, it would take ten hens to satisfy Randi's hormonal urges.

    As far as climate and chickens, they handle both heat and cold pretty well if acclimated properly. During hot weather, a chicken will process extra body heat through their comb and wattles, and panting will cool body temps down just as dogs and cats when they pant. Your chicken will require electrolytes in his water and plenty of shade, maybe even a water mister while outdoors in summer where you are.

    So, I recommend you scrap your idea of acquiring any hens unless you want to start a flock, and then get four or five at the very minimum.
     
  4. Ol Grey Mare

    Ol Grey Mare One egg shy of a full carton. ..... Premium Member

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    My Coop
    Agreed - you are at a point where you will need to decide whether you want to continue to have the bond with Randi or if you want a flock of birds which Randi will be part of -- and then you will need to proceed accordingly by either continuing with your boy or purchasing enough hens to set him up with a flock of his own.
     
  5. Straykitty2

    Straykitty2 New Egg

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    Jan 5, 2016
    Casa Grande, Arizona
    Thanks for getting back to me. I didn't know it was going to be so difficult to find hens so I think Randi is going to be on his own.
    He's sleeping laying at my feet right now. He's part of the family just like the dogs and cats. As he spends most of his time in the house I won't have
    to be concerned about our summer heat. He'll enjoy the AC like everyone else, [​IMG]
     
  6. azygous

    azygous Chicken Obsessed

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    It does a heart good to hear a good rooster story. I'm glad Randi has a nice home. With air conditioning.

    The reason I know roosters make good pets outside of a flock is because I knew one. Actually, I raised him from a chick, he went to live with another flock, then got re-homed after he was deemed too hard on the old hens in his flock.

    He lived with a family with a goat and a basset hound for daytime companions. He slept in the house on a file cabinet in the kitchen at night in winter, and in summer, he bunked outdoors in the dog house with the dog. At night he came in and watched TV with the family. He lived with them for a couple years, dying last year. He was a Silver Laced Wyandotte named Walter.
     
  7. Straykitty2

    Straykitty2 New Egg

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    Jan 5, 2016
    Casa Grande, Arizona
    I'm glad to hear other people let their rooster live in the house, some people might think I'm a bit weird letting him live indoors. Randi picked his spot when he saw himself in the big mirror that's on the kitchen wall. I will say I think he has a bit of an attitude problem. The reason the lady wanted a new home for him was because he fought and killed another rooster. He chases the cats occasionally so they're very cautious around him and he's had an argument or two with one of my dogs. Randi kind of rules the roost (the home). It's been exceptionally cold here this winter for Arizona (I'm a summer person so don't like 30-50 deg. temps we've had) but as soon as it warms back up into the 60-70's I will be able to keep the back door open and Randi will probably spend a lot more time outdoors (as I will also) LOL.[​IMG]
     
  8. bruceha2000

    bruceha2000 Overrun With Chickens

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    I trust you have a plan to deal with Randi Poop tm , Chickens poop wherever they are.

    I can't even imagine heating a house to 80F on purpose! If we had A/C that is about as low as I would take it in the summer. Just too much energy used otherwise.
     
    Last edited: Jan 11, 2016
  9. Straykitty2

    Straykitty2 New Egg

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    Jan 5, 2016
    Casa Grande, Arizona
    When you are used to 100+ degrees for 4 months straight in the summer 80 deg. is nothing.
     

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