Please help! My roosters are overmating my hen!!

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Nala2010, Jan 5, 2016.

  1. Nala2010

    Nala2010 Out Of The Brooder

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    am a first time mom to a BEAUTIFUL Rhode Island Red named Lil' Bit. She was about a week old when I bought her in March 2015. I had never raised chickens before, however I have had a yard full of them for a couple years (my neighbors)and I wanted a pet chick I could spoil. She was raised inside my home for several months, only going out to potty as needed and to play when supervised. Turns out, she is one of the best pets I've ever had! Now, she stays outside almost all the time. Only coming in for visits. There are about 12 hens and 4 roosters belonging to my neighbor that eat, sleep and LIVE outside my front door. Recently, we decided we didn't want these mix breed birds mating with our little girl, so we began searching for RIR roosters. We wound up with 3 roosters and a hen that were given to us, just because the people didn't want them. Everything has been going well for the last 2 months, but now the last 2 days, two of the RIR roosters have been mating with Lil' Bit almost non-stop. She's got the plucking marks on her head and back and if I walk outside, she runs to me and jumps on my shoulder or in my arms, trying to get away from the two roosters. She is terrified to go outside because when I took her out, they cornered her again to where I had to push them off of her with my foot and she ran back inside the house. I never built a coop, because they perch in the wooded area between my house and garden. So I can't separate the her from the roosters unless I bring her inside. Believe it or not, she is potty trained, so she's not as messy as most would be. But this is a temporary fix. I know I need to thin out the roosters, so my question is... Do I get rid of the two mounting her, or just the most aggressive one? The mixed breeds are definitely going to be gone. They would have been already except, no one can catch them.
     
  2. Jesusfreak101

    Jesusfreak101 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    On you so dont have enough hens for even one rooster, sadly they will contiune to over mate her for lack of others to distract them. The general rule is 8 hen for one rooster at least. I would get rid of all your males unless you gonna seperate them until you get some more hens that are sexually mature.
     
  3. FridayYet

    FridayYet Innocent Bystander

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    3 roosters and 2 hens? Plus the neighbor's roosters in your yard? Wow.

    I've read that a good ratio is 1 rooster to 10 hens to prevent over-mating. Right now I have 2 Roos to 7 hens, and really have to get rid of one of the boys soon.

    I feel sorry for your girl - she could get injured badly. I'd get rid of both of yours, or at least one and tell your neighbor to keep his on his own property, then get 6 more pullets at least.
     
  4. Wyorp Rock

    Wyorp Rock Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

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    There are too many roosters in the whole picture. When you decided you didn't want your neighbors roosters mating with her, how did you prevent that if they are always outside you door. I am assuming that your 3 roosters and 2 hens integrate with their 12 hens and 4 roosters, so theoretically she could have 7 roosters trying to mate with her? If you want them not to mix, then you really should consider a coop and fencing to keep your birds in and their birds out. What is happening with your other hen, I would think she would be in the same situation. I would separate them both from the roosters and check them both over to make sure they don't have any injuries, roos can cause some wounds with their claws and beaks (not really intentional, it just happens), then I would keep them separated until you can get the number of roosters under control. Either give some away, sell them, or pen them separately. When you say the mixed breeds are going to be gone, is you neighbor planing on getting rid of them? Most of the time a chicken is easiest to catch when it is roosting at night, so you may have to try that, if they are up high, you may have to place some sort of cage out and put a little corn in it and just be patient and wait for the bird(s) to go in and "trap" them that way.
     
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  5. Nala2010

    Nala2010 Out Of The Brooder

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    We've already asked him to do something with his and he told us he couldn't catch them, that if we could then to give them to someone who wanted them or eat them. There were more, but we caught and gave them away. His chicken's aren't the problem, ours newest ones are. I may just have to get the two aggressive ones in a new home. Or, do you think it'll stop once my neighbors roosters are gone? His roosters are all brothers and my newest ones are brothers. So they get along well with their own. I think me bringing the two sets of brothers into the same yard was a HUGE mistake. Now, to figure out which to get rid of. The one's I know won't hurt her, or the new one's which I'm unfamiliar with and hope for the best. I'm not sure it'll stop, but they don't hurt the other RIR hen, just mine.
     
  6. Nala2010

    Nala2010 Out Of The Brooder

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    The guy I got mine from said the RIR's would run the other roosters from my house back to their own. I feel like a complete idiot now.
     
  7. Wyorp Rock

    Wyorp Rock Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

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    Don't feel that way. We all have a lot to learn. He may have felt that RIR were aggressive and would run the others off?
    They will all 3 still try to mate with her and compete for her. She is basically caught in the middle. I would get rid of atleast 2 and get some more hens to up the hen to roo ratio. General guidlines say 8-10 hens to 1 roo is the minimum. Now, with that said. Where does your girl lay her eggs? Do you provide a nest for her and the other hen. Where do you provide their food and does the neighbors chickens come and eat your food as well?


    Full disclosure here: I have 1cockerel to 6 pullets. I do see him mate the two that are laying a couple of times a day, but they squat for him, so they have accepted him and it goes pretty quick & so far there are no injuries etc., but I keep a close eye on them (and him), the other girls have not started to lay, so it's hit or miss with cooperation with him, but he doesn't chase them down and they do have places in the run and coop they can avoid him.
     
  8. Nala2010

    Nala2010 Out Of The Brooder

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    All of them eat here, that's why I wanted my girl. I basically take care of them, though they are not "legally" mine. He's pretty much given up caring for any animal he had and gotten rid of them all. All of his hens are here too. The chickens that are left running the yard are the 2 mama's and the babies they had last year. My girl lays her eggs in my garage in a crate that we put an old blanket in once we saw her laying for the first time. The other chicken's are fed in the yard. We throw their food out to them 3 times a day, plus they get whatever scraps get thrown our and they forage in the field and garden. My girl comes in and eats whenever she feels like it. She has a bowl of food inside my laundry room plus whatever she gets outside.
     
  9. Nala2010

    Nala2010 Out Of The Brooder

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    I'm gonna find 2 of my rooster's a new home. I am gonna go get chicken wire and rig up a temporary pen for them and another actual pen to "try" to lure the others into tomorrow until can either find them a home or find someone who can slaughter them. I know I can't do it. I can't even kill any animal. I don't have the heart. But, I'm stuck between a rock and a hard place. Like I said, she's my heart! It's her before ANY of them.
     
  10. GodofPecking

    GodofPecking Chillin' With My Peeps

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    anyone can catch any chicken, any rooster, any chicken at all, at NIGHT. They never ever run away at night, they cannot, because they cannot see at all. Just literally pick them up, or knock them from their high perches with a broom and then pick them up ( they will flap their wings to the ground and won't be hurt ).
     

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