Rooster leading hens into trouble

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by ChickNCoop, Apr 1, 2017.

  1. ChickNCoop

    ChickNCoop In the Brooder

    Oct 23, 2016
    We live on 13 acres and our chickens free range. We have 4 roosters who each have their own little harem. They have all lived in harmony and been happily roaming around their coop and run. They have access to everything they could ever possibly want. A couple of days ago our main rooster Julio led his ladies completely off our property into the neighbors yard. He has done it everyday since. They needed to hop snow fencing on the property line to do it. He is going out of his way to wander from the yard and coop. We don't get along with the neighbors and our chickens on their property will be a problem. Anybody have any suggestions to allow them to still free range but stay on the property, specifically around the coop and other chickens?

  2. bobbi-j

    bobbi-j Free Ranging Premium Member

    Mar 15, 2010
    On the MN prairie.
    Sounds like it's time to put up a fence between you and your neighbors. (Good fences make good neighbors) Either that or confine your chickens to a run.
  3. centrarchid

    centrarchid Free Ranging

    Sep 19, 2009
    Holts Summit, Missouri
    Confinement would be the first option for me in your setting. I can direct ranging habits of my birds using feeding stations but cover patches important consideration for that approach to work My Missouri Dominque Flock is going off property by crossing NW boundary which must be stopped.

    Post a sketch showing home ranges of the four flocks / harems. If like mine, then there will not be a lot of overlap. What you will be looking to do is bend or flip the ranging habits of that problematic harem. Wing clipping can be employed to keep chickens from clearing snow fencing if properly done but that can degrade ability to evade predators and access and elevated roost.

    Problem with flipping my Missouri Dominique flock to another direction is a group of American Game stags that the Missouri Doms like to avoid. What I will be trying to do is bend Missouri Dominique flock through some heavy brush that goes north to south along west border of property. There will be a convinence issue for me when getting to the feeding station. Flock may need to be confined her as well.
  4. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Free Ranging

    Feb 2, 2009
    Southeast Louisiana
    You have 13 acres to work with so is it possible to catch and confine that flock on a separate part of your property for a couple of weeks. When you let them out they are likely to readjust their home range to the new location.
  5. Mrs. K

    Mrs. K Crowing

    Nov 12, 2009
    western South Dakota
    I have found the more you free range, the farther they will go. Even confining them for a couple of weeks, will limit their exploration. You don't explicitly say how many chickens you have and space is relative to the eye of the beholder. While you are thinking that they have everything they need, there seems to have been a need or a threat unperceived by you.

    I think fence, run, or reduce your flock.

    Mrs K
  6. centrarchid

    centrarchid Free Ranging

    Sep 19, 2009
    Holts Summit, Missouri
    Many postings discussing free-range habitats of chickens use area (acres / hectares) interchangeably with distance (feet / meters) when describing space between dwellings or properties. Additionally, details that could be demonstrated with drawings would expedite communications. Taking time to determine actual ranging habits with respect to lay of land and vegetation helps make predictions about how ranging can be "trained". We seem to not recognize the chickens have a logic or pattern that can be manipulated to your advantage.

    Hypothetical 13 acre area shown to be nearly square (green).

    Hypothetical free-range area shown to be nearly round (blue). Assumed to be centered on roost, feeding resource of cover. Area depicted approximates 4 acres.

    Free-range area centered on 13 acre acrea.

    Free-range area of 4 acres offset from center of 13 acre area having flock / harem going into "uh-oh" land. Situation of OP I assume.

    Free-range area that follows pattern promoted by resources important to chickens.

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