Rooster doesn’t mate.

Amurr

Songster
Apr 25, 2020
84
145
101
Hey guys! I could really use some brains to pick!
My rooster Kyle is an English Lavender Orpington. He is 10 months old. And he’s just not the brightest crayon in the box.

He crows, but he’s really bad at it. He’s not... much of a rooster. He doesn’t have any protective instincts, he won’t mate. Just doesn’t have any drive to be the breeding stock I need him to be.
We brought home a “seasoned rooster” thinking that Kyle would get the idea after watching (and maybe competing for a few weeks/months) nope. And then we had to butcher the seasoned rooster because he was a jackass.
Kyle is a very lazy bird, and he doesn’t seem to do well when it’s cold. The hens (jersey giants and black amaracaunas) do just fine in the cold and even choose to free range under the cedar trees where there is no snow. But Kyle, sweet stupid useless Kyle, just walks out into the snow lays down and waits to die.
As far as I know, this isn’t normal chicken behavior. He’s young, he seems healthy, but he has no interest in being a rooster and he’s really bad at just being alive. He also requires way more care than the rest of the flock combined.

I know that only time will tell me if things will change, but I could use a little bit of insight if anybody has some wisdom to share.

(picture is from the last time he laid down in the snow and waited to die, I brought him in to warm him up before putting him back in the coop)
66BAA945-CD54-4397-870E-0E17E9794401.jpeg
 

CannedMonster

Free Ranging
Nov 26, 2017
2,284
4,864
587
Southwest Idaho
Just looking at his comb leads me to believe he may not have a lot of male hormones going on there. His comb is hen sized. A roosters should be much larger. I wouldn’t use him as breeding stock, but to be fair, you may want to wait until spring and see if the longer daylight hours cause his hormones to kick in.
Another thing to consider is are the hens older than him? Mature hens are usually unimpressed with cockerels and will even beat them up.
 

Amurr

Songster
Apr 25, 2020
84
145
101
Im sorry, I dont think I explained myself well. I never said he almost died. But he has on three separate occasions just laid down in the snow and waited for rescue. (He might have died if I hadn’t found him before dark) When I bring him in the house he powers through food and water and I take him back out to the coop all warm and fed and happy. He has great poop, he’s friendly, his activity levels haven’t changed.
I’m not saying he’s not sick, he just hasn’t given me many clues on what to look into if he is.

If it nearly died once it's most likely sick
 

Amurr

Songster
Apr 25, 2020
84
145
101
Hormonal or developmental issues.. I hadn’t considered that. He’s definitely not fertilizing any eggs if he is managing to breed them when I’m not looking.
I wonder if it would be possible to keep him as a pet if we got a rooster to replace him in our breeding program. We only have ten hens so we certainly don’t have enough ladies for two fellas, but if Kyle isn’t interested, I wonder if a serious rooster would share space with Kyle.

That does seem to be odd behavior. Maybe he has hormone or developmental issues? Have you checked for bullseyes in the hens’ eggs to make sure he’s not breeding them when you’re not looking? With these issues I would consider weather or not you actually want to breed him and pass on his genetics.
 

Willow2253

Crowing
Dec 6, 2019
1,416
4,761
346
Eastern Oregon
Hormonal or developmental issues.. I hadn’t considered that. He’s definitely not fertilizing any eggs if he is managing to breed them when I’m not looking.
I wonder if it would be possible to keep him as a pet if we got a rooster to replace him in our breeding program. We only have ten hens so we certainly don’t have enough ladies for two fellas, but if Kyle isn’t interested, I wonder if a serious rooster would share space with Kyle.
If you get a second rooster that’s already good with other roosters, or raise one up from a chick, I can see that situation working out. I hatched out too many roosters this year, and they were fine with each other, the problem was they were over breeding the hens. Since Kyle’s not really interested in that, it probably won’t be an issue.
 

Amurr

Songster
Apr 25, 2020
84
145
101
Well he crows like crap and he acts more like a hen than a rooster, so maybe it is a hormone issue. I would say he’s dimmer than the hens though.
All but two of his hens are younger than him by about two months.
Thank you for your insight! I’ll wait for spring before I make any drastic decisions.


Just looking at his comb leads me to believe he may not have a lot of male hormones going on there. His comb is hen sized. A roosters should be much larger. I wouldn’t use him as breeding stock, but to be fair, you may want to wait until spring and see if the longer daylight hours cause his hormones to kick in.
Another thing to consider is are the hens older than him? Mature hens are usually unimpressed with cockerels and will even beat them up.
 

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