rooster behavior towards hens

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by HSerChickLady, Mar 19, 2012.

  1. HSerChickLady

    HSerChickLady Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Feb 12, 2012
    upstate NY
    We have had to get rid of one of our roosters due to his aggression towards people and the others in the flock. But we still have 1 rooster left in with our hens and we're not sure what is appropriate behavior or not? The remaining rooster has settled quite well but he does still get huffy with the hens on occasion. Mostly he puffs up and does the funny little side step dance to them, occasionally he'll give them a peck as well when doing this. Is this normal, or too much aggression?
     
  2. Egghead_Jr

    Egghead_Jr Overrun With Chickens

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    The side step jig he does is his mating dance. Ours doesn't do the classic wing down circling the hen hoe down but close enough to get the job done.

    Minor pecking and occasional chest bumps are also normal, he must maintain standing at top tier of pecking order or they wont accept him. It's incredible how brutal the hens will be to him if he ever gets injured. Ours wattles and comb are still healing from pre winter leg break. He hopped down into the run so let him be with them for a few hours, came back to a bloody mess.
     
  3. HSerChickLady

    HSerChickLady Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Feb 12, 2012
    upstate NY

    OK, thanks. We've never had roosters before and it's not exactly been a good experience so far for us. But if this is normal behavior then i'm hopeful that our issues with mean roosters is over. The rooster we just had to get rid of was ripping the hens feathers out just because he could and being just brutal when mating or when the other rooster was mating with a hen. We had another rooster who was also excessively rough with the hens and just mating them constantly but he isn't mean with people so we've been able to just seperate him to his own home.
     
  4. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

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    The little sidestep, usually accompanied by one wing dropping down, is a courting move. It's supposed to encourage the hen to squat to be mounted. If it all works right, mating is quick and easy. It's when the hens don't squat or the roos don't give that signal things get so rough. Sounds like he may be a keeper. Does he call the girls for treats, or warn them when you approach?
     
  5. Egghead_Jr

    Egghead_Jr Overrun With Chickens

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  6. HSerChickLady

    HSerChickLady Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Feb 12, 2012
    upstate NY
    I'm not noticing one wing drooping. He just does the dance, bumping the hen around, and occasionally he'll nail her (peck her hard). I don't see it happening a lot, at least not while i'm watching anyhow. He does perk up when the dog comes around but he knows she isn't there to bother so doesn't do too much about her. He is getting a tad bit more aggressive when the kids are out there. He stays at the fence when they're there. Sometimes he also puts his head down and scratches the ground and does his little dance with his neck feathers a bit puffed up if they're doing something he doesn't like.
     
  7. Clark Family

    Clark Family Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 18, 2014
    Richvale, Ca.
    Our rooster fester does the little dance, and pecks the hens. I was concerned because until now he really had nothing to do with them. I guess they are just getting old enough to mate with. He is hanging out with them more, which is good. He isnt at all aggressive towards us, but our puppy tries to play with him, and Fester will attack him. Puppy isnt learning his lesson because he continues to pester him. One of these days, Fester will teach him a lesson he wont forget it, and then leave him alone. Glad to find out Fester is just doing a courting dance.....
     
  8. cehasz

    cehasz Out Of The Brooder

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    Haha. My Jack Russell Pup sneaks in their area (They have a long outdoor run) all the time and he will chase them back and forth twice and then eat whatever veggie/fruit scraps I gave them that day. Olaf and Sparrow (the two Roos) leave him be, but one day he's gonna come back with a bloodied nose! Olaf will attack me but just says hi to the canine chasing his hens. Crazy birds!
     

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