Rooster hates men!

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by NCNC_Mel, Dec 3, 2009.

  1. NCNC_Mel

    NCNC_Mel Hatching

    Dec 3, 2009
    Hi everyone!

    I am brand new to this board so I hope I am doing everything right! I am in charge of animal care at a nature center and we recently hatched several chicks as a project for our on site preschool. We got so attached to them we decided to build a yard/coop, keep the hens, collect the eggs, and show our visitors that you can keep chickens in your backyard.

    As they got older, one of our four hens began to crow. We decided to keep the rooster and see how things went as it is, from what I understand, more natural for a flock to have a rooster and we certainly don't have a problem with fertilized eggs. We've had our flock since Easter (they began hatching on Easter day) with no problems - super friendly, curious, and healthy chickens. Last week though, our rooster started attacking any man that walked into the yard. He seems completely fine with women but no man shall pass.

    Has anyone encountered this problem? Is there anything we can do to eliminate this behavior? I use operant conditioning techniques to train our birds of prey but I'm not sure if this will work on a rooster exhibiting this behavior (plus, I'd have to get a man to do the training because he has no qualm with me). If it continues I can return him to the farm where we got the eggs but I really like having him around (the male staff members on the other hand are already comparing chicken recipes).

    Thanks for any advice! I'm looking forward to being part of the group!
    Last edited: Dec 3, 2009
  2. Soccer Mom

    Soccer Mom Songster

    May 5, 2009
    West of Crazy
  3. Chicken Chat

    Chicken Chat Songster

    Jul 19, 2009
    Southern Illinois
    What kind of chickens did you hatch, some species are more aggressive than others? I had a problem with one of my roos trying to bully me. Everytime I went into the pen and he came after me, I picked him up and carried him everywhere. Only when he relaxed did I let him down. I also did the roo dance to him and would would chase him for a few steps to let him know I was the dominant. Now, he has gotten a lot better and I have very few problems with him.

    And Welcome!
    Last edited: Dec 3, 2009
  4. teach1rusl

    teach1rusl Love My Chickens

    Well I can't say I blame the male staff members...I'm sure it hurts to get taken down by a mere chicken!! lol
    It sounds like he's at that age where he's full of himself and asserting his authority. I'm curious as to whether he sees you as top bird, or his territory? Most say you have to take him down a few pegs...which means the men who work there will have to dominate the rooster. Many say picking him up and walking around with him for part of the day (tucked like a football) shows the rooster that he's not boss. Whispering chicken recipes into his ear while they're doing that may help too...heheheheee...
    And...[​IMG] from Indiana!!!
  5. Uzuri

    Uzuri Songster

    Mar 25, 2009
    Here's an interesting question... does he treat the hens exceptionally nicely?

    I wonder if he thinks you ladies are hens, and the guys are rivals [​IMG] I've seen dogs behave that way, why not chickens?
  6. NCNC_Mel

    NCNC_Mel Hatching

    Dec 3, 2009
    Thank you all for your quick replies! I'm happy to find such an active message board.

    To answer a couple of questions...I believe Herman is a Rhode Island Red, he looks like the Kellogg rooster. We did not get specific breeds, just whatever hatched out of the eggs that were donated by the farm. We believe that left us with Herman the RIR rooster, a Langsharn, an Ameraucana, and a Dominique. I do not know a lot about chicken breeds but a staff member did quite a bit of research to i.d. them. I'll look up info on the behavior of RIRs to see if they are more aggressive.

    And I do think it might be a protecting the hens thing, as someone suggested. I don't know if he is unusually nice to the hens because I have little to compare it to but they are all in good feather condition and seem none the worse for wear. There is sometimes a little squawking ruckus when he's doing his thing but it doesn't seem major to me. As far as people go, I've had several female staff members go into the yard and he seems fine with all of us, not just me. Any man that enters, however, gets it. I went in by myself with a male staff member hiding around the corner and Herman was fine. The male staff member entered (and stayed near the door and behind me by the way :) ) and Herman was also fine. He did walk up to me and peck at my toe gently but it seemed more out of curiosity than aggression but he did not go after me or the guy. That of course sounds more like "Hey the Alpha is here I don't have to deal with this guy" now that I think about it.

    At any rate, I appreciate everyone who is reading my long posts! I'll see if I can get one of the guys to carry the rooster around and see if that helps.

    Thanks again and anymore advice is always appreciated!

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by