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Rooster questions

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by PinkHairGirl, Dec 10, 2011.

  1. PinkHairGirl

    PinkHairGirl In the Brooder

    Sep 5, 2011
    South Africa
    I am new to chickens and this is my first flock
    They are about 17 weeks old and of the 6 2 are roosters.

    Can I keep 2 roosters or will they fight? One is much bigger, the smaller one also has, what I think were broken toes. He and 2 others were an addition when they were not coping as wild chickens on a friends farm. The children all got them on the same day so her 3 have just joined our 3 and I have no idea what happened to his toes but they are all bent to the side. He can walk and manages fine, he is just a bit smaller.

    My bigger rooster has started crowing, well lets call it squawking really, in the mornings. I know they do this but we are in the suburbs and I am not sure if the neighbors are going to start complaining.
    Is there anything that you can do to stop it or does he have to go?
    I also heard that you need a rooster until the hens start laying eggs, is this true?
    Can I just keep the females?

    And then i wondered if all rooster turn aggressive? The rooster was my son's chick and he is very fond of him. He does not seem aggressive yet but also does not have a spur yet. Do they all get spurs? I have told them not to pet him and i make sure he moves away when i come and establish dominance over the flock. Is this enough.

    Sorry for all the questions, just trying to do the best for the chickens and children who love them

  2. gryeyes

    gryeyes Covered in Pet Hair & Feathers

    Well, let's see, let's first address the rooster's crow: no, crowing is what roosters do, and they don't just do it at dawn, they do it several times a day and sometimes at night. Really.

    So, with that one out of the way, let's move on to some others: Nope, you don't need a rooster with the hens EVER, unless you want to hatch chicks. Hens laying has nothing to do with roosters "kick-starting them" into laying.

    If you want to, and it's legal to do so, and you don't mind annoying your neighbors, you can keep two roosters. They may not ever do much more than challenge each other, having been raised together. They might not fight, or they might fight. I have eleven roosters in my flock and they don't fight. A twelfth did, and he's gone.

    Spurs have nothing to do with level of aggression. It's just a chicken characteristic. Some hens grow spurs. My dominant rooster has spurs nearly 2 1/2 inches long and he's not aggressive. He's just got some impressive spurs!
  3. allpeepedout

    allpeepedout Songster

    Mar 2, 2011
    Southern Indiana
    As a recently new roo owner who also didn't know what to expect . . . My rooster, handled as a chick, turned aggressive/defensive overnight at about 5 mos when hormones kicked in. This started as not flogging but pecking at my shoes. Because I wanted to keep him and enjoy working with animals, I used the training techniques I learned on BYC and it worked nicely (do a search: mostly, I pushed the roo to the ground by pressing on his back and holding for a few seconds, and did this daily for a few days. Also, picked him up every day, but now I just leave him alone.). Also, after a couple of months of aggressive mating, he is now a gentleman. He will threaten some unfamiliar people, which seems triggered by unusual footwear and colorful patterns in clothing. The only attempt at flogging I had was when I went in the coop early one morning wearing really bright flannel PJ's. I really surprised him, and he really surprised me!

    I would 100% supervise your kids as your rooster moves through maturity, and be on the alert. If you are good with animals, learn some of the training techniques to immediately supress unwanted behavior, and be aware that unfamiliar clothing / little kid behavior might trigger reaction. Don't let bad behavior become a habit.

    Other people prefer to replace all roos that show any aggression, but training worked for me and wasn't a big deal. Good luck and keep your kids very safe until your roo figures out what to do with his hormones and how to assume his new role as protector of the flock in an agreeable way.

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