Our Dominiques Roo is driving us BANANAS pls help!!!!!

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by jennifernadya, Aug 17, 2016.

  1. jennifernadya

    jennifernadya New Egg

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    Aug 17, 2016
    Hi everyone, this is my first post on any kind of forum. My husband and I have been raising chickens for about four years but never a rooster as we have been in a town environment until this spring, now we reside on a farm with about 80 acres. We decided to get a rooster to add extra protection for our hens, as you can imagine fox and raccoons and hawks are a major prob in the country in New York. Our flock all came together and our rooster is now 4 months old. 14 hens and 2 roosters. 1 rooster was supposed to be a darn cornish hen but oops. in the last month our Dominiques rooster has learned his crow and has not stopped since! He crows starting at 545am (to be expected!) but keeps on going. It gets worse when my husband works on the farm and makes any kind of noise, or if either of us go near the hens. Even if all is quiet, he still crows pretty much all day long to the point where my husband is thinking of culling him. He can't stand the thought of resorting to this, so before culling, I want to make sure we arent missing something, like-- he's an adolescent and it will change, or, we are doing something wrong. He has been aggressive with both my husband and I, pecking us if we get to close to him and posturing and doing this macho dance while lounging toward us, running at us, etc. Any ideas??? Thank you so much my fellow chicken raising friends-- [​IMG]
     
  2. LRH97

    LRH97 Chillin' With My Peeps Premium Member

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    I love roosters, but really their only "purposes" are to breed, make noise, look beautiful, and of course....feed you. I've heard of some roos fighting off some predators and dying for their hens, but I have multiple roos running around my yard and every now and then, we still have predator problems. So more often than not, they don't offer much protection except maybe acting like an alarm system. As for the crowing, it's what they do. Some do it more than others. However, I wouldn't cull a roo for crowing just as I wouldn't get rid of a dog for barking. Now, if he's aggressive, that's a completely different story. If you feel threatened by him, or if he's gone as far as attacking you, he's not a keeper. You don't want a health hazard in your flock, and believe me, if an aggressive roo's spurs get long enough, that's what they are. Think of nailing a nail through a two-by-four and whacking yourself on the leg with it. Plus, you don't want a roo to pass these traits on to any offspring he may have. Two roos for 14 hens is little much too. One roo to ten to twelve hens is good. If you have another roo, I suggest getting rid of the aggressive one.

    And....[​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Aug 17, 2016
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  3. jennifernadya

    jennifernadya New Egg

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    Aug 17, 2016
    Thank you for the warm welcome! He has drawn blood with the pecking... I didn't know if this was aggressive behavior or not as the sweet hens seem to do a little nibble occasionally at my toes, but never so hard blood is drawn. this seems like yo, get out of my face human kinda pecking. Strangely, our other rooster is a dark cornish who has a more aggressive rep but he's like super chill... hey, it's awesome to get on a forum and talk to people who know chickens-- can't believe it's taken me this long to get on here!!![​IMG]
     
  4. LRH97

    LRH97 Chillin' With My Peeps Premium Member

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    BYC is a great place with plenty of awesome people to talk to! [​IMG] Your Dominique has established himself as "top" roo, so your Cornish is probably pretty submissive. Yep pecking hard enough to make you bleed isn't playing nice. I've been pecked by pretty even tempered roos when handling them, probably because they were just annoyed. The charging at you is the main thing. That's pure aggressive behavior.
     
  5. mypetsrchickens

    mypetsrchickens Out Of The Brooder

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    We had 2 roosters, one of which crowed all the time and one that didn't. We culled the one that crowed incessantly because he was mean to the hens. As soon as he was gone the sweet, non-crowing, docile rooster turned into a beast. He attacked me twice and my fiance several times. He was culled that evening. We now have a beautiful black cochin rooster that crows minimally and is absolutely the sweetest rooster I've ever seen.

    If he's charging you then he needs to go.
     
  6. rebrascora

    rebrascora Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I agree entirely with LRH97. I too like roosters and have quite a few.....OK, I admit.... far too many![​IMG]. Your problem is that you have young roosters and pullets of the same age and no older birds to teach them some manners. Cockerels raised under a good (none aggressive) head cock bird usually learn their place and by the time they are ready to take over the flock and depose the head honcho, they have usually figured out their role and that it doesn't involve challenging humans. Young male birds reaching adolescence with no male role model and no strong female to keep them in check are much the same as young lads...they run riot and get into trouble. The quieter Cornish male could well become loud and/or aggressive if/when you remove the Dominique.
    Being flogged by a rooster is a very intimidating and potentially dangerous situation and whilst I have had success retraining one, I have also failed to remedy one. That was in the early days when I didn't have an older rooster to keep everyone in check. All the chicks that have been broody reared in the flock since then have been none aggressive.... I had 15+ male chicks last year and over 20 so far this year. Most of them are culled at about 20 weeks because I obviously can't keep them all, but none have been human aggressive since the first two I started with.... I can only put this down to being raised in a mixed flock of older hens and older roosters. As is often mentioned here, there are plenty of nice roosters looking for homes without putting up with aggressive ones and at 4 months yours is showing signs of inappropriate behaviour to humans already, so you need to spend some time (daily) putting him in his place and see how you get on or get rid of him and give the other one a chance.

    The crowing is just something they do. Mine sometimes crow in the middle of the night too if something disturbs them. There are some that crow less than others but it's usually an individual thing. Probably a more confident older rooster will crow less as he is more assured of his position. If they are within hearing of another rooster, they will crow to compete, even if it's a mile away.
    Your pullets will thank you for getting rid of the two adolescents and perhaps getting them an older rooster once they have started laying. Adolescent cocks often terrorise pullets of the same age as they reach sexual maturity earlier and their hormones run riot..... think rape and pillage..... and the girls can sometimes get injured (scalping is not uncommon) or even killed especially if there are multiple roos.

    I think you might find that a chicken dinner is preferable.

    Regards

    Barbara
     
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  7. jennifernadya

    jennifernadya New Egg

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    thank you so much for replying everyone. not to sound hokey but starting a farm can be isolating so having some like minded and knowledgable people to get insight from and talk to is great. maybe someone out there can define aggressive rooster behavior? And, mypetschickens, I don't doubt that our rooster 'big leg' the docile dark cornish could turn super alpha too but I hold out hope for that gentle giant!!
     
  8. heatherlaw

    heatherlaw Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aggressive behavior in a roo is usually posturing when he sees you, charging, flogging with his wings, and trying to hit you with his Spurs. Yours is young so he may not have Spurs but he will when he gets older and those can do a lot of damage.
    What you described sounds like aggression. Sometimes it can be fixed, sometimes it can't. Since you have too many roosters for the number of hens I would suggest culling the aggressive one and establishing your dominance with the docile one. A sweet roo is a keeper.
    To establish dominance and teach boundaries there are a few things you can try. NEVER run from a roo who's challenging you. In the chicken world that is submission. When you are out with them be sure to walk through your roo, not around him. Purposely make him move for you and he will see that as you being in charge. Don't chase him, just make him move out of your way calmly. Sometimes young roos can get cheeky when their hormones kick in but I've found that a squirt bottle can be a big help. He should maintain a respectful distance. If he acts like he's going to charge a squirt usually changes his mind without hurting him. If he comes at you, try to grab him and pin him down until he gives up. When he's calm again let him go.
    If you are afraid to go in the run with him without some protection a nice wide rake makes a great barrier and will allow you to push him aside without risking a peck. If he does peck you, "peck" him back with your finger.
    If you keep it up you will most likely end up with a sweet respectful roo who is a joy to have in your flock. I've used all of these techniques and they have worked well.
    One more thing, not always but with some Roos the crowing kind of calms down once they are a year old. And not all of them crow all the time.
    Good luck with your boys and welcom to BYC!
     
  9. heatherlaw

    heatherlaw Chillin' With My Peeps

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    [​IMG]
    Proof that roosters can be sweet, gentle pets. This is my "lap chicken" Fred. He passed away this summer because of the heat. I so miss having him around. I can't wait to move out to the country so that I can get more roosters (legally[​IMG])
     
  10. jennifernadya

    jennifernadya New Egg

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    Aug 17, 2016
    great response and very helpful. we do see some very nasty behavior with the hens and sometimes come home to think there has been a fox attack and then to find it's the rooster terrorizing them. we also thought this was "adolescent' behavior but it looks like this behavior can be dangerous -- hadn't realized.
     

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