Roos and Hens: does size matter?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by MamaJay, Jul 18, 2016.

  1. MamaJay

    MamaJay New Egg

    Dec 22, 2015
    Salida, CA
    Hi all. I have a newbie question. I have one coop with space for 10-11 birds. I have 10 pullets (2 Light Brahmas, 2 Barred Rocks, 3 Red Star, 3 Rhode Island Red/mutt hybrid - all standard sized, no bantams).
    My 11th bird is a cockerel, purchased as a pullet, "Edna", now named Edgar.
    I wasn't planning on keeping a rooster, but Edgar is a darling. His protectiveness of his ladies, even as a youngster, is endearing! I can deal with possible aggressive behaviors, but what I just can't seem to get around is his potential size vs my ladies' potential adult sizes. The weight differential seems to be my biggest hurdle.
    I can't exactly tell him, "Don't mate with the little ladies, you'll hurt them!"
    Am I over-estimating the possible hip/ leg damage to the smaller ladies when I have a 12-pound rooster covering 6-pound hens?
    I REALLY want to keep him, and separate quarters are not an option for us. Besides, he would be miserable!

  2. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs I Wanna Be A Cowboy Premium Member

    Jul 16, 2015
    central Wisconsin
    You will just have to wait and see how it goes. I have larger roosters mate smaller hens okay. It is possible he could hurt them. You will just have to watch and use your own discretion whether he's too much for them.
    1 person likes this.
  3. waddles99

    waddles99 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 22, 2013
    My ameraucana pullets were still probably around 4 lbs when they got turned out with an 8 lb cock bird. No problems there.
    1 person likes this.
  4. Doublew

    Doublew Just Hatched

    May 12, 2016
    Following. I have a similar issue. I have a very diverse flock (wasn't sure what I would like). I have a Red Ranger rooster and hen, rock barred hens (8), SLW roosters (2) and hens (6), cochin hens (5) and rooster, and a polish hen and rooster. The barred rock, red rangers and wyndottes are comparable in size but I am worried about the red ranger or wyndotte roosters going after my cochin hens or my polish hen. The breeds have seemed to pair off with like breeds the only rooster that seems to try and protect all the hens is the red ranger...
    1 person likes this.

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by