Rooster not breeding hens?

DMacKimmie

In the Brooder
May 4, 2015
10
0
22
oregon
I'm having a problem with fertility from one of my roosters. I don't know if he isn't breeding my girls or having difficulty breeding due to plumage. My flock is bantam cochins. A cochin breeder suggested plucking or clipping plumage around the vent but I'm not sure how much I should take off. I'm not even sure he is breeding the girls. I know eggs from his group of hens are infertile even though all the hens are just about a year. I really want to hatch some of his chicks as he is beautiful show rooster.
 

Ol Grey Mare

One egg shy of a full carton. .....
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I'm having a problem with fertility from one of my roosters. I don't know if he isn't breeding my girls or having difficulty breeding due to plumage. My flock is bantam cochins. A cochin breeder suggested plucking or clipping plumage around the vent but I'm not sure how much I should take off. I'm not even sure he is breeding the girls. I know eggs from his group of hens are infertile even though all the hens are just about a year. I really want to hatch some of his chicks as he is beautiful show rooster.

Welcome to BYC -
You mention the hens are a year old, how old is your rooster? Have you spent any time observing the flock to see if he is at least mounting the hens? Are you basing infertility on having cracked and examined some eggs' germinal disc or are you basing it on failure to develop when incubated?
Heavily feathered breeds with a lot of vent fluff can have breeding difficulties, so trimming is a pretty common fix for that. Plucking results in feather regrowth - trimming will leave the feathers gone until the next molt, so it's the preferred method to avoid having to be constantly re-plucking. You mention that he is an exhibition bird - that will be something to consider when trimming him (you'll need to trim him and the hens) as you'll not have him back in full plumage until after his next molt.
For the how much/where to trim - the feather fluff directly under the main tail of the hens down to the vent must be trimmed to about 1/2 inch and the male needs trimmed the same way but from the vent down to the hocks to keep his fluff out of the way. You can also trim the fluff from under the males tail as well since you are already there.
 

DMacKimmie

In the Brooder
May 4, 2015
10
0
22
oregon
I am not sure how old he is since I got him at auction. I have two other roosters that have produced fertile eggs including out of one of the hens now with George the rooster in having issues with. I have one chick and eggs developing in the incubator out of each of them. George's three girls have given me lots of eggs but not a single one had developed either under a broody or in the incubator.
 

DMacKimmie

In the Brooder
May 4, 2015
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22
oregon
400
 

aart

Chicken Juggler!
Premium Feather Member
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Nov 27, 2012
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Trim his nether region......
.....tho I can't tell you exactly how to do that because I have never done it myself, but it sure sounds like that is the next step.
 
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DMacKimmie

In the Brooder
May 4, 2015
10
0
22
oregon
I plucked a couple of my girls but their next eggs were bloody. Now im afraid to pluck more. Im not even sure George is breeding the girls so I let them all have dates with my other 2 roosters.
 

Ol Grey Mare

One egg shy of a full carton. .....
7 Years
Mar 9, 2014
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15,072
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Oregon
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That may well have been related to the plucking, but is not anything to be overly worried by. As noted above, trimming is preferable to plucking anyway, so you can quite safely trim your birds and not have any concern about the deeper tissue disruption that would be associated with plucking which may have resulted in the streaky eggs.
 

DMacKimmie

In the Brooder
May 4, 2015
10
0
22
oregon
Im thinking of trying ai with him. The hens I've bred to my 2 other roosters are fertile and developing in my incubator but George is my best rooster.
 

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