Rooster(s) question

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by carousel, Mar 18, 2009.

  1. carousel

    carousel Songster

    Jan 31, 2008
    NW Oregon
    I have a friend that started with 8 hens and a wonderful rooster.
    this year she ended up w/ a single chick! who has turned out to be a rooster! we got 2 pullets to hang out with "little peepers" while he was growing up. He has turned out of course as a single chick might! to be a BOY.
    Is it possible to keep 2 roosters and 10 hens? and do the roosters have to be kept apart? the younster is just 4 months old, the "dad" a year old.
  2. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Free Ranging

    Feb 2, 2009
    Southeast Louisiana
    It depends on the roosters personalities. They may fight to the death over the hens or they may decide which is the boss and which is the assistant. In larger flocks with more than one rooster, it is normal for one to establish himself as top boss and the other can become his able assistant. They actually work well as a team in protecting the flock. The lead rooster has his favorites and gets his choice of the hens, but the assistant gets a share. However, when two roosters are evenly matched in desire to be the top dog, they may fight to the death. If there is too great a difference in their spirit, the top rooster may kill the weaker, as though to say "I don't want those genes in my flock".

    Another potentially serious problem is that, with too many roosters, the hens may become injured due to over mating. The roosters go about their business so often that the hens can lose a lot of feathers and can actually become seriously injured from the spurs.

    So, keeping two roosters may work out, but you have to keep a sharp eye out for problems and be ready to intervene. With 10 hens for 2 roosters, I would expect problems.
  3. carousel

    carousel Songster

    Jan 31, 2008
    NW Oregon
    So if we had a higher number of girls?
    (sadly due to an accident last night she now has 9 hens)
    would this help?
    it would be easy enough to have more girls.
    I'm raising some right now.
    thanks for your input!
  4. Lobzi

    Lobzi Crowing

    Flip side, I have two roosters and one hen. Right now my hen is broody on three eggs so Im hoping of more females from the hatch. When she was out and about the three of them got along seemingly well. So I have to say, it just depends. I have a third rooster that I have to keep separate from all chickens, but that is a different story....
  5. pkeeler

    pkeeler Songster

    Jul 20, 2008
    There are rules of thumb for the ratio of roosters to hens. But it is only a guideline. Keep both roosters if you want. If you notice the hens getting beat up (missing back feathers and neck feathers), then you can reduce roosters or increase hens. If the roosters fight to the death, there is not much you can do. Most likely they will fight once and settle things.

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