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Rooster killed a chick :-(

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by Flock Leader, Apr 29, 2015.

  1. Flock Leader

    Flock Leader Chillin' With My Peeps

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    For the past several years, we've had a very sweet-tempered rooster to watch over our flock. This boy (seen in the middle on the perch) is protective towards the hens, human- and kid-friendly, and has never harmed a chick.
    [​IMG]
    We also have a newer rooster, a Brahma which was hatched last year. This one isn't the dominant roo, but recently he's been trying to woo some of the hens, crow more, etc. He also started attacking my children lately, up to the point they are afraid to go out into the yard when he's around. So I've been thinking about getting rid of him for some time. It's not like we need him for breeding (we don't have any Brahma hens so anything he breeds will be crosses).

    Today was the limit. Yesterday, some new chicks were hatched, and today when I came into the coop I saw one bloody dead chick on the floor and the Brahma roo pecking at it. I was nauseated. Never had this happen before; the chicks were with their mother, in case you are wondering, but she's a smallish hen and probably couldn't protect him.

    I isolated the villain at once, told my husband and later he called me from work and said a friend of his will come in the afternoon to pick up the rooster. Only wish I'd have done this sooner...
     
  2. centrarchid

    centrarchid Chicken Obsessed

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    A rooster, especially a fully adult, is seldom my first suspect when it comes to the death of a chick. If immature and bird confined tightly, then isolate him for that reason alone. If he did do it, I would chalk it up to adolescent behavior. Killing chicks is usually much more likely to be done by a hen or juvenile chicken.
     
    1 person likes this.
  3. keesmom

    keesmom Overrun With Chickens

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    I agree with centrarchid. Just because he was pecking at it does not mean he killed it. Hens and juveniles are much bigger threats to chicks than an adult rooster. And small hens are perfectly capable of defending their young against much larger birds. It's possible the chick got separated and ran into the wrong hen.
     
  4. howfunkyisurchicken

    howfunkyisurchicken Overrun With Chickens

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    It is possible he did, that can not be denied. But, whether he did it or not, his behavior indicates he needs to go. You did the right thing by finding someone else to take him. I just hope you and your husband were upfront about his bad behavior so that his new owner knows what they might be getting themselves into.

    Good luck with your remaining chicks :hugs
     
  5. Flock Leader

    Flock Leader Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks for your replies, everyone!!! Yes, I understand that he *might* not have been the culprit, but the facts are as following:

    1) We never had a chick pecked to death before, and we've been raising chickens for years now.
    2) Since isolating that rooster I've been monitoring mama hen and her chicks closely, and nobody else seems to be bothering them.
    3) We have no juvenile chickens at this time, only adults.
    4) We didn't want that rooster anyway. My daughters started jumping up and down once they knew he's gone.

    My husband's friend is familiar with this rooster - we gave it to him some months ago as a loan for breeding. He's very happy to have it. Also, with him the rooster will be the only boy in the flock, and it's possible that less competition will make him less aggressive.
     
  6. centrarchid

    centrarchid Chicken Obsessed

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    The rooster's biggest problem and if like with humans, the most incriminating evidence against him.

    Chickens have complex social interactions that can go awry in larger than natural social groupings in smaller than natural confines. You have to make proactive adjustments to promote well being of all birds before problems arise. There is no need for excuses then.
     
  7. maineliner

    maineliner New Egg

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    Yeah my adult chickens just killed 5 rare juveniles.
     

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