Rooster Adolescence?

Oct 10, 2021
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I have a mixed flock of 26 bantams and standards with 8 roosters(2 Olive Eggers, 6 var. Bantams). They will be 12 weeks on Wednesday. They all grew up together since day one, and have a good amount of run space. I spent a lot of time with the birds when young, so they are all very friendly. One is a shoulder bird, a couple like the snuggles, but no one is aggressive at all towards people, and they all eat gently out of my hand. They are currently dealing with what seems to be a mild case of Fowl Pox, just a few comb dots or legions, no one seems slow or anything.

Until today they all got along. There was play fighting and feather flaring but never any real pecking/damage. Today I walked by the run to find my Olive Egger roo(the biggest rooster) had been attacking the comb of my Japanese bantam (the smallest roo) and took a big bite out, lots of blood. We were tending to the Japanese bantam when the OE ran around and kept pecking the combs of all the other bantam male roosters. My white EE roo seemed to be defending the other roosters and would give a peck back but only when the OE attacked. We ended up separating him into a dog crate.

We know we can probably only keep a couple in the long run, but were hoping to keep 3 since Japanese roos and bantams roos require a lower hen/roo ratio. And hoping to keep an OE roo for the protection of the flock. I've read elsewhere on here that if they are raised together you can usually keep them together for a year to be able to choose which to keep better.

Should we get rid of him now?
Isn't 11 1/2 weeks a little young for this aggression? Could it have to do with the pox? Is he just maturing faster than the others? Should I separate him until he's through puberty? Not sure what to do.

It's hard to get rid of them since I've spent so much time with them and they are so friendly and it is also hard to find homes for roos here. There are feral chickens in the neighborhood to maybe he could find some ladies.

Help!
 

Sally PB

Crossing the Road
Premium Feather Member
Aug 7, 2020
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Belding, MI
Isn't 11 1/2 weeks a little young for this aggression?
Not necessarily. I had 3 cockerels, and by that age, 2 of them were all over the pullets, to the point the girls didn't want to get off the roost. I couldn't give them away and had to cull them.

It didn't matter that they were all raised together. It didn't matter that the pullets hadn't started to lay. It was all hormones.
 

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