Rooster special food and care?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Cynthia 085, Mar 28, 2015.

  1. Cynthia 085

    Cynthia 085 Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 4, 2014
    Hi guys,

    I have a smutty Buff silkie roo. Sweet as can be; not aggressive towards me or his hens.

    I have just been letting him be and have not done anything different for him. He gets what my hens get.

    Does he require anything special?


    What about his long legs? He is out and about and gets a lot of exercise.
  2. krista74

    krista74 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 4, 2014
    Victoria, Australia.
    I'm not sure that he requires anything special per se.

    I have read that some people actually feed a flock raiser to their whole flock rather than layer's pellets, and supplement with calcium on the side. I believe this is because roosters do not require the additional calcium that laying hens do.

    That being said, my roo gets the same feed as my hens (layer's crumble, vegie scraps and a small scratch treat each day), and he appears perfectly healthy. Well, he did until he went into a full blown moult. Now he looks like he fell out of a tree [​IMG]

    - Krista
    1 person likes this.
  3. ChickenLegs13

    ChickenLegs13 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 4, 2013
    Lower Alabama

    A long legged rooster doesn't require anything different than a short legged rooster.
    My roosters eat whatever the hens eat. Some people say that roosters eating layer is a bad thing but my roosters probably eat enough other stuff to offset the extra CA.
    1 person likes this.
  4. Cynthia 085

    Cynthia 085 Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 4, 2014
    Thanks guys! The little dude is doing well. He tends to loose some balance sometimes.
    By the way do you guys think it's ok to hatch baby chicks year round? I got him from a breeder during the winter months.
  5. MysteriaSdrassa

    MysteriaSdrassa Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 26, 2015
    Central Wisconsin
    Same here,, the roos in my flock get the exact same thing as the hens,,, layer ration ground at our local feed mill.
    As far as the calcium content goes,, layer rations are "supposed" to have enough extra calcium for the hens but I still feed oyster shells free choice,, if the hens need it they will eat it,, they seem to instictively know. And to be quite honest I have on occasion observed our fellows eating it as well.
    1 person likes this.
  6. Bine

    Bine Chillin' With My Peeps

    A rooster does not need extra or different food, but some breeds have big diffences between the build and feathers of the sexes. My asian longtail mix rooster i.e. had to build almost two times the feathers his girls have in the first year. After that he molts his sickle feathers only partially but has still much more feathers to build every year than a hen. Since he is a gentleman that always gives the best food to his girls he often misses out on treats. So I feed him dog food extra away from the girls. The feathers just grow out better and I like my roosters bright and shiny.
    1 person likes this.
  7. Cynthia 085

    Cynthia 085 Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 4, 2014
    Ok thanks for letting me know.
    He is super sweet. He is a tiny little feather fuzz ball.
    Bine do do have a picture of your roo? :)
  8. Bine

    Bine Chillin' With My Peeps


    Schnute (blue quail) and Kopernikus (buff columbia) d'anvers
    [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
    and my sweet little asia longtail mix... he is a bantam, too and as you can see his saddle feathers are touching the ground and his tail feathers are more than twice as long as his body.
  9. Ol Grey Mare

    Ol Grey Mare One egg shy of a full carton. ..... Premium Member

    Mar 9, 2014
    My Coop
    The extra nutrients in layer ration *are* harmful to any bird who is not actively laying (not only male birds, but females too young, too old, molting, etc). Specifically, the excess calcium in the diet results in renal damage - this is because they are not actively expelling the excess calcium in the form of egg shells, and the calcium is stored in the body where it builds up and causes damage. Layer feed contains 4 times the calcium of grower, starter, etc. In addition to renal damage there can be calcification of soft tissue and organs. For young birds excess calcium can have a retarding effect on their growth and development.
    Many folks will report that their roosters eat layer ration "all the time" and they "never see a problem" - this is because the damage is all internal. Most roosters on a diet of layer ration will live significantly shorter lives than they would have on a proper diet, but live a few years so when they die it is just chalked up to "chickens die" - it is only if a necropsy is done that the damage becomes apparent.
    For a mixed flock, it is more appropriate to feed a grower ration that does not exceed the needs of any flock member and then provide calcium needed by actively laying birds separately by simply providing oyster shell.
    1 person likes this.
  10. Bine

    Bine Chillin' With My Peeps

    See, that is something I didn't know. Since I have only ornamental birds who aren't that great in egg production, only a part of the feed is layer mash and the rest is grains and fruit/vegg b/c in my first year with my tiny birds I had hatching problems due to thick egg shells. Half of the chicks needed a "c-section". But it never crossed my minde that my roosters have no outlet for the calcium and could get ill. So thanks.

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