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Our Easter egger roo has been picking on my hen

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by surfinghen, Jan 9, 2017.

  1. surfinghen

    surfinghen Out Of The Brooder

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    We have 9 chickens, last spring we got a straight run of 6 chicks to add to our existing 3 (we lost 6 to coons [​IMG]) we got one roo out of the group, he's a beautiful Easter egger but mean as all get out. He's comes after me in the morning when I let the chickens out of the coop in the morning and for the last week has been picking on my head hen Tater Tot (she's a Buff Orph). I found her last week in the far corner of my yard hiding in the ivy with her comb tore up and bloody. I took her out of the corner and set her down in the yard, as soon as he saw her, he came running over and she ran off back under cover. I had to jump in his way so she could escape. My daughter found her the day before tucked behind the the nest boxes on the ground. I have her in isolation so her comb can heal and I can find out what to do with our roo. Ive never had a rooter this long (our last roo was an Easter egger and mean as well, he clawed me up good when he was still youngish so I got rid of him real quick) So I have no idea about rooster behavior at all. He chases all the hens around and he can be very brutal to the other girls too but this just went beyond anything that I've ever experienced. I'm thinking of putting him in isolation for a few days when my Buff is better too. We don't want to get rid of him if we can avoid it, any advise would be appreciated! Any any info on proper rooster behavior would be welcomed too!
     
  2. LRH97

    LRH97 Chillin' With My Peeps Premium Member

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    It's hard and unfortunate, but the truth of the matter is: a mean roo is not a keeper. Ever. It also sounds as if he's too rough with the girls as well. Chicken mating and "romance" is not at all graceful, but he shouldn't be terrorizing the hens and tearing up their combs. If he's come after you, that is outright aggression and he just shouldn't be kept. You don't want a health risk in your flock, for you, your family, or the rest of your flock. Not to mention, aggression can be genetic, so any offspring this roo has also have a significant risk of the same temperament. A good roo should respect your space and not come after you. Additionally, he should should not be overly-aggressive with the girls. It's pretty easy to spot over-kill aggression in this situation. Any bird's temperament varies by individual, but also by breed. I have heard some mixed stories on EE roos, both good and some not. However, I've had good luck with Wyandottes, Orpingtons, Australorps, and Brahmas. These are fairly even-tempered breeds and I think it is wise to pay a little more mind to temperament over looks when it comes to selecting breeds of roosters. I hope this experience doesn't sour you on roos because they really do make great additions to your flock. It's just a matter of finding a nice, respectful bird.
     
  3. N F C

    N F C Home in WY Premium Member

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    I agree with LRH97...it's not a good idea to keep an overly aggressive rooster. There seems to be a lot of well behaved roosters available that won't charge you or beat up the girls. Maybe it's time to replace your guy.
     
  4. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    I'd isolate him asap...then either eat him or employ other culling methods.
    Do not give away or sell him without complete disclosure as to his human and bird aggression.

    Why do you want a cock/erel?
    Might need to read up on how to manage them if you feel you need one,
    it's often more about the human behaviors in handling him than the bird itself.
     
    1 person likes this.
  5. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

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    Why do you not want to get rid of him? He shows no redeeming qualities that you've mentioned except possibly the fact that he has a functioning set of testicles. And I got to say, those aren't exactly a rarity in the chicken world.......get rid of him.
     
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  6. lazy gardener

    lazy gardener Chicken Obsessed

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    I agree with all other posters. This roo has got to go, and the sooner you get rid of him, the better. Never hatch eggs from his breeding. Mean often begets mean. He's a hazard to all concerned. The mean roos taste the best.
     
  7. surfinghen

    surfinghen Out Of The Brooder

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    Feb 28, 2012
    Santa Cruz, California
    Thanks for all the reply's. We've been having some weather issues here in Northern Ca and have been without power for the last several hours.
    Meanwhile, while we had a break in the rain, I was able to switch out the hen that was in isolation and put the rooster in instead.
    We raised him up with our other girls, held them and interacted with all of them so they would be tame and nice and up until about 2 months ago he was ok with the hens and us. He was always very eager to mate with our hens, mostly the older girls at first but slowly he started to get more aggressive.

    We want a rooster so that someday we might be able to have chicks, they are good at protecting the hens from predators since they free range during the day and we have hawks and raccoons a plenty and we like the cockadodle dooing. I was hoping this guy was going to be a keeper but unfortunately he is not, our other rooster got nasty much earlier than this one did so I wasn't sure if it was phase or if this is going to be his personality forever. I will hopefully get another rooster in the future just not an EE. I"m not sure what to do with him as of yet but he is not going to stay here. Thanks again to you all for your advise and help.
     
  8. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    I stop handling the males near as much as soon as I know they are males, just once in a while so they know I will handle them and 'they won't die' if I do.
    I keep handling the females tho, and he better be OK with it.....frequent but short duration handling gets him used to this and to learn I won't hurt anyone.
    Calm, confident, and quiet talking keepers make everything calmer and going more smoothly.
    But my birds are livestock, not pets, not much chickencuddling going on here.
     
    2 people like this.
  9. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

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    This.

    Maybe give it a try with your next cockerel. Since you've had two with behavior/aggression issues, you might need to change your approach. If you really want a rooster for those reasons, try getting a younger cockerel and putting him in with your older hens. Let them kick his butt for a while and teach him some good flock manners. Don't make him a pet. He's intact male livestock with a job to do. Let him do his job and just be sure he's respectful of you. Hopefully you'll have a better outcome next time.
     
    1 person likes this.
  10. lazy gardener

    lazy gardener Chicken Obsessed

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