Pecking Order?

tlee1956

Chirping
Apr 30, 2015
102
7
63
Idaho
Just found out my month old Sussex is a cockrel. All of a sudden he grew this big bright comb. I have 4 others, different dual purpose breeds, that are about 8 weeks ~ all pullets. BTW, thanks to everyone for helping me sex them. First time chicken owner.
Since I got them, my Austrolorp has established herself as top of the pecking order. Now that my Sussex is starting to feel more powerful, he and the Austrolorp have started sparring occasionally. They both ruffle their hackles and take a few swipes at each other, then done. Noticed him flying up to my BR as if he's trying to mount her too. She's been second in the peck.
I'm assuming they're just trying to establish a new order, but wanted some input on this. Also, is this any indication that he might be aggressive?
 

cityfarmer12

Songster
5 Years
Oct 18, 2014
1,249
118
181
Missouri
no, this is totally normal behavior, and you should never interfere unless someone starts drawing blood. They are young, and will most likely do this for a awhile (or stop really soon, it depends). As they grow they just have to figure this stuff out. On aggression, a good boy will not harm his hens after he has established himself as top dog (or chicken, lol). However, if you are meaning aggression toward you, you can't tell yet. To be safe, when i know i have a boy, i always handle him extra. I desensitize him to being touched everywhere, to being examined, and to being held and handled. I still have ones come out as being people aggressive, some things you can't change, but i always try as best i can to make him friendly. Good luck!
 

tlee1956

Chirping
Apr 30, 2015
102
7
63
Idaho
Got another question about rooster aggression. I've got two young gkids and cannot tolerate a mean rooster. Do these boys always show red flags before they get completely crazy and go into attack mode? Or can you have a totally gentle roo one day that turns into Mr Hyde the next day?
 

aart

Chicken Juggler!
Premium Feather Member
8 Years
Nov 27, 2012
94,977
125,550
1,807
SW Michigan
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Got another question about rooster aggression. I've got two young gkids and cannot tolerate a mean rooster. Do these boys always show red flags before they get completely crazy and go into attack mode? Or can you have a totally gentle roo one day that turns into Mr Hyde the next day?
It can happen in a flash.....hens can hurt kids too, have them keep their shiny eyed faces away from beaks.

@centrarchid and @Ridgerunner have great rooster write ups. I've saved RRR's in my notes but won't paste it as I didn't write it.
 

cityfarmer12

Songster
5 Years
Oct 18, 2014
1,249
118
181
Missouri
Got another question about rooster aggression. I've got two young gkids and cannot tolerate a mean rooster. Do these boys always show red flags before they get completely crazy and go into attack mode? Or can you have a totally gentle roo one day that turns into Mr Hyde the next day?
This is good article that talks about the things roosters do when they are "guarding" the flock from you. I also talks about some tricks to help him know you are boss.

https://www.backyardchickens.com/a/keeping-a-rooster
 

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