Raising A Rooster Tips

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by thefooladifamily, Jun 11, 2010.

  1. thefooladifamily

    thefooladifamily In the Brooder

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    I do NOT want a mean rooster.

    Any tips on how to make sure that doesn't happen? I'm being told mine is about 8 weeks old so thinking now is the perfect time to help evolve Mr. Roo into a nice little boy.

    Any and all advice is welcomed on how to teach him "I" am in control and not he.

    [​IMG]
    Amy
     
    Last edited: Jun 11, 2010
  2. gryeyes

    gryeyes Covered in Pet Hair & Feathers

    Well, there's another active thread or two right now about that very subject. Here's what I posted in one thread about roosters pecking ankles:

    I just turned around and stepped toward him, making him back up. Then I continued forward, following him for a few minutes while he kept turning toward me then away to move further away. When he faced me, I'd take a step.

    I didn't chase him by running, I just forced him to keep going until he no longer wanted to face me off.

    I also knock him off the hens if he mounts them while I'm in the run in close proximity. They're MY hens, not his; I am top of the pecking order in THIS flock. I don't whack him hard, I just push with a foot. (Two of my hens actually run towards me when Carl gets into his Gonna Get Some moods.)

    I've never experienced any other bad behavior, so I can't address that. I talk to all the chickens, including the rooster, and when they were confined to the run, I sat in a chair IN the run, calmly reading or just watching them all. It's restful. When they come around, and they will - chickens are very curious - I don't make any sudden movements, and I use a soft, encouraging tone of voice. I give them treats every day.

    I didn't realize Carl WAS a rooster until he was about 10 - 12 weeks old. So he got treated just like all the pullets. Nothing different; I picked them each up when necessary, I moved them out of my way when I had to, and I tried to give everyone treats from my hands. I now know the rooster is supposed to stand back and let the ladies eat first, so I don't TRY to get him to eat from my hand any more. (But I do toss some treats a little bit further away in his direction when the pullets are all gathered around my feet and might not notice the extra goodies I save for him.)
     
  3. Sunny Side Up

    Sunny Side Up Count your many blessings...

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    Mar 12, 2008
    Loxahatchee, Florida
    [​IMG]

    I think a rooster's temperment is part nature, part nurture. You can do everything to treat him well and he may still turn out to be aggressive, if it's in his particular nature. Let's hope this is not the case with your roo!

    I think it's easier to change the inborn nature of a mannerly roo, through mishandling turn him into one that is wary & aggressive, than to gentle a born fighter. I think the key is consistent kind care & handling, so the roo knows to expect only goodness from you, that you're not a threat. I think a lot of the learned aggression is due to fright and wariness.

    I've read a lot of discussion on how to act around your rooster, to make yourself the "alpha" roo, to not let the roo mate or eat in front of you, whatever. Those methods may work for some folks, but my roosters don't seem to be such deep thinkers. And I'd wear myself out trying to keep the roosters from mating in my presence.

    The way I see it is that with an ideal roo-hen ratio of 1:10 then there are job positions for a mere 10% of all roosters hatched. The other 90% have their purpose on a plate. Therefore, only the best & most mannerly roos deserve a chance in the flock. If they're going to be aggressive then they need a long soothing soak in simmering broth while you go pick out your next & nicer rooster.

    I wish you the best of success!
     
  4. thefooladifamily

    thefooladifamily In the Brooder

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    Jun 10, 2010
    Baldwin County, AL
    thank you:)
    He is already taking the treats first though. He always pecks at my hand when I reach into the cage. Very long story but really up until today I thought he was a turkey and that maybe that was normal for a turkey to do. LOL. Now I wonder if it's him being pushy. He kind of intimidates me the way he runs up and gets all pushy. What should I do about this? I haven't been pecked hard/bitten yet and really don't want to be...
     
  5. thefooladifamily

    thefooladifamily In the Brooder

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    Jun 10, 2010
    Baldwin County, AL
    Also, what is this I hear about carrying them around upside down? Is it a punishment or preventative measure?
     
  6. gryeyes

    gryeyes Covered in Pet Hair & Feathers

    Quote:Cruel punishment, IMHO. But then again, I've never had to resort to much more than picking mine up and tucking him under my arm while I walk around the yard for a while. I have caught him by his legs, but I roll him over, tuck his wings in, and tuck him under my arm. Then I just go about my business with a rooster. After a while, I release him.

    It lets him know *I* am the boss.
     
  7. jeremy

    jeremy CA Royal Blues

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    HOLD him. ALL the time. Any time you go outside to "visit" with your birds, make it a point to pick him up and carry him around for awhile. Essentially you're asserting your dominance over him, letting him know you're at the top of the pecking order.
     
  8. Sunny Side Up

    Sunny Side Up Count your many blessings...

    4,726
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    Mar 12, 2008
    Loxahatchee, Florida
    [​IMG] You see, I just don't get this. I know that these things can be effective in some situations, but not what I would do on a consistent basis. There might be an exceptionally special rooster that just gets uppity only occasionally, and a few episodes of carrying & handling can change his attitude for the better. But if there is a rooster that MUST be held every time then I don't think he's worth keeping. That's just too much effort when there are more gentle & mannerly birds available.

    And I think that too much handling of a rooster that really would rather not be held could cause him more stress, make him more fearful & wary, and therefore more aggressive. If you have a roo who lets you walk right up to him & pick him up, then fine, handle him often. But if you have to chase him around the yard & into a corner to pick him up then what would be the benefit of doing that every time you go out to your chickens?

    I have some roosters that have been raised from chicks, and even as tiny fuzzy chicks made it apparant that they did NOT like to be held. But they've turned into mannerly roos that don't stalk us or bother us in any way, and they have earned a place in the flock. They do their job and I leave them alone to do it. There are others who allow even the kids to walk right up and pick them up any time they wish. Again, I leave them alone to do their jobs, and everyone is very content. I don't try to delve into their little minds to see if they consider me their leader, or alpha roo. They're free to eat, crow, mate, make personal phone calls, whatever, in my presence.
     
  9. thefooladifamily

    thefooladifamily In the Brooder

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    Jun 10, 2010
    Baldwin County, AL
    So confused.

    So when the rooster cones running to me in the brooder and is trying to peck at me every time I put my hand in there (for food??)being pushy to the hen trying to get to the feed first, what do I do? Am I supposed to be doing something to stop these behaviors? Or just treat it like a chicken and if it grows up mean get rid of it? Shoo it away hard whenever it pecks at my hand?
    Thank you:)
     
  10. Glamorgan

    Glamorgan In the Brooder

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    Jun 4, 2010
    Earth
    I have three roosters living together and they are so nice. Handle your rooster all the time and as much as possible. Pet him and show him that you are his friend. [​IMG] If you hurt him, he will get scared and maybe peck you.
     

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