Rooster Rules

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by Chicken Ghetto, Feb 20, 2017.

  1. Chicken Ghetto

    Chicken Ghetto Just Hatched

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    Hi I recently started a backyard flock with 3 hens and a NHR Roo. Unfortunately my neighbors dog killed all three hens. That didn't stop me though I was just starting to enjoy the eggs so I ordered a batch of hens online(16 total) to get back on track. I have for the most part kept my rooster separate from the chicks. I kept the chicks in the coop and let the Roo free range. They are 8 weeks old now so I am letting them out in the run with my supervision. The Roo would run to the fence and just call them and some would stand at the fence by him. I thought this would be good for them to get use to one another until a chick got out and he forced it to mate. I felt really bad and afraid for the chicks. My Roo is big and almost pushing a year.
    My question is when can I allow my rooster to mend the flock safely and how do I help the process go smoothly?
     
  2. TwoCrows

    TwoCrows Show me the way old friend... Staff Member

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    Hello there and welcome to BYC! [​IMG]

    I am so sorry for your losses! It is never easy to lose them, especially to predators.

    Unfortunately, you will need to keep the adult rooster away from the chicks until they are all mature and ready to lay. Sometime around 6 months or so. If the rooster mates them too early, he can damage their cloaca, the flap that opens and closes to allow waste to pass or an egg. This flap needs to stay intact so that bacteria can't enter the oviduct, which can cause all kinds of issues. He is also no doubt large enough that his weight alone could cause them strained legs and other body parts.

    So for now, you can allow them to see each other from the other side of a fence, but have no contact until the pullets are of laying age.

    Good luck with your flock and welcome to ours! :)
     
  3. Chicken Ghetto

    Chicken Ghetto Just Hatched

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    Thanks for that information it is very helpful. My Roo is mature and young and hasn't mated in 3 months or so but I will make sure he is kept separate from the others for their safety. He will be happy in the long run. [​IMG]
     
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  4. TwoCrows

    TwoCrows Show me the way old friend... Staff Member

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    Enjoy those young chicks! They grow SO fast and before you know it, they outgrow their cuteness!! [​IMG]
     
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  5. centrarchid

    centrarchid Chicken Obsessed

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    With fully adult rooster and no hens involved, I would allow rooster and juveniles to combine immediately. If he is tidbit calling to youngsters and they are not scared of him then they should be OK together. I routinely have adult roosters with chicks (< 5 weeks old) watching for first few minutes to make certain all will be well. Immature roosters more likely to be problematic but I have been using even those lately without trouble. Hens in mix can complicate issue as hens much more consistent in attacking young not theirs. Harem masters can also be hard on chicks that are not their own.
     
  6. Chicken Ghetto

    Chicken Ghetto Just Hatched

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    centrarchid What about him trying to mate with them can I stop that?
     
  7. centrarchid

    centrarchid Chicken Obsessed

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    I do not usually see that unless rooster somehow excited. I am guessing he does not try to do it a lot and will stop once he relaxes around the youngsters.
     
  8. Chicken Ghetto

    Chicken Ghetto Just Hatched

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    Ok thats interesting he should get use to them
     
  9. TheTwoRoos

    TheTwoRoos Chillin' With My Peeps

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    He is still young.and nit being able to mate and he has fresh neat right infront of him,yeah,that can start something.Most roostets would not do this,but it can take at the most 2 years for a rooster to mature fully.You could try putting them out when their around 5 months.I can imagune hiw big your roo is,I have a NHR roo and weighs atleats 7 pounds,so thats quite a bit for a tiny chick.
     
  10. Chicken Ghetto

    Chicken Ghetto Just Hatched

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    Feb 20, 2017
    Gumptown, AL
    Cool imma definitely wait until they are at least 5 months before letting them be together.
     

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