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Rooster troubles

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by studentsigner, Aug 16, 2011.

  1. studentsigner

    studentsigner New Egg

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    Hi we're new to raising chickens and have some questions. It seems we have an aggressive rooster on our hands. I've been searching sites for several days now, a lot of them say to catch it and to carry it around. How in the world do you catch a chicken? All of ours run away from us! Most of them were hand raised so I don't understand it. We got them as tiny chicks and had a light and all. My granddaughter would hold them for hours, never just a certain one. They were hatched right before easter. So I think that makes them about 4-5 months old. They are now in the pen w/coop. We have tried to catch them again to no avail. My granddaughter was devastated that she could no longer hold them. Back to our problem. My daughter and I frequently would go back to the coop to give them treats. Now the rooster, the alpha one I am certain of, challenges us. One day he challenged my daughter who had the feed bucket in her hands. He flew up and tried "biting" the bucket. I read somewhere to challenge him. So when he challenged me, I stomped my foot and yelled no. This worked one time. Now he comes clear up to the house. One day he was at the door looking in! He likes to hide under the pine tree and if you come out in the yard, he comes running at you. I have tried chasing him back to his "domain" the area around the coop, but he has decided the entire yard is now his. He only challenges me and my daughter so far, not her husband. How do we make him stay in his area and leave us to enjoy our back yard again? I know about clipping their wings, but we had a predator get into the coop several nights and now we hate to clip their wings and leave them defenseless. Our little banties are terrified to go into the coop and we can not catch them now. We have a fence /pen at the coop so they are out during the day. But the banties got out and now we can't get them to go back into the coop. It seems that all the chickens are terrified of us. Can anyone help us? Thanks for those of you who offer suggestions!
     
  2. top of the hill

    top of the hill Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Not sure I can help with an agressive rooster solution, but my girls still come up to "check stuff out" every now and then. they'll take a peck at an object I'm holding or my pants or sometimes even a cut or bruise. Some are more agressive with their pecking than others.

    I would assume your rooster jumped up to peck the bucket because he recognized it as the feed bucket, do you use this everytime you go to add more feed? I've read too that if you have a good staring contest with an unruley chick, they may back down, I've had a few with my girls and they seem to get that I am boss.

    Simple solution to get him to stay in his area... fence it in, or only let the chickens free range a couple hours before dark. This way, they won't spread so far throughout the yard before heading back to the coop to sleep. Not sure why the banties won't go into the coop, is there a predator hiding out in there? is there an environmental factor, too moist,too hot?

    As far as catching them, I've had the best luck bringing a chair into the run and taking a seat. Within minutes they run over to hang out, they love to jump on my knees or check out my boots. There are 2 girls I can never catch, my ameracaunas, way too fast!! When I do finally catch one, I hold her like a football, grabbing her from the top of the back and holding her wings down. she may make some noise at first but usually calms down, just keep the pressure so she can't lift her wings up. you can either tuck her under your arm (again, like a football) or I usually put my arm or hand under their feet and so they can roost. Some hang out and walk around with me, some jump off a few seconds later.

    I've also noticed a change in my birds as the weeks have gone by... I associate it to their age "the teenage years" and have heard that once they start laying, they usually come back to their snuggly selves.

    Hope this helps a little, Hang in there!!
    [​IMG]
     
  3. bobbi-j

    bobbi-j Chicken Obsessed

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    If it were me, I'd get rid of the rooster. Butcher and eat it, sell it, give it away, cull it and bury it - something. You have a granddaughter who could be seriously injured if that rooster decided to attack her. If the adults in their lives can deal with it in a matter-of-fact manner, kids are pretty resilient to things. You can explain to her that the rooster was not safe to have around and needed to find a new home (depending on her age, she doesn't necessarily need to know if the "new home" is the freezer). I may sound cold and callous, but when you have animals you always have to have a plan as to what you're going to do with them when or if the time comes that you can no longer keep them. Maybe she could get a bunny or kitty for a pet to catch and cuddle since chickens aren't generally the cuddliest of animals.

    ETA - Is there any way you can better secure your coop so predators don't get in at night?
     
    Last edited: Aug 16, 2011
  4. studentsigner

    studentsigner New Egg

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    Aug 16, 2011
    Thannks for the suggestions! My granddaughter is almost 18, and since the rooster is so aggressive, she no longers tries visit the chickens. However, now she can no longer sit in the backyard due to the antics of the rooster. For that matter, none of us can.
    Yes, we had a predator get into the coop several nights in a row. even thoThere was a fence around the coop and a chicken door with a plank to the fenced area. The hens used to free range, but now are no longer allowed to do so. The rooster and one other chicken, think it's a roo too, fly over the top as soon as the chicken door to the pen is opened. As I said, due to predators we hate to clip their wings. Maybe the solution is to put fencing on the top of the pen area? But we love to watch them run around out back (through the window) ! We have discovered that they are so much fun to watch!
     
  5. bethgranberg

    bethgranberg Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I understand what you are going through. I had a rooster at one time who was horrible it got to the point where I had to make a decision. He was not only coming after me but my pullets. That is where I asked for help on byc the peeps here helped me so much. I found someone who wanted him for food. It worked out great I remember the relief I had when he was gone. I know it might be hardd but I chalk it up to one of lifes challenges....
     
  6. bobbi-j

    bobbi-j Chicken Obsessed

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    On the MN prairie.
    OK, your granddaughter is definitely old enough to understand... [​IMG] A cover of some sort over your run would be a VERY good idea! I have a run for my chickens, but they rarely use it. The run is attached to the coop, I leave the pop door to the run open at night so they can at least leave the coop in the morning. DH lets them out of the run in the morning, they free range all day, and put themselves in at night. I like the idea of a run so that if we're gone all day, they can at least go outside and get some fresh air. So, you can have the best of both worlds. They can have a protected, covered run when needed, and they can free range when you want them to. By putting a cover over the run, you will also be protecting them from arial predators that may attack once they've discovered your birds. I hope you can find a solution so you can enjoy being in your backyard enjoying your birds again soon.
     
  7. Momhen

    Momhen Out Of The Brooder

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    Our Barnevelder Bantam cockerel would attack us sometimes too. We've come to realise that he doesn't like dark objects - arms with dark sleeves, dark trouser legs, black school bags. Although he has occasionally attacked someone's bare legs, he pretty much always attacks something dark. Sometimes I make a point to let him know who's boss by pushing him back quite aggressively (without hurting him). When he attacks my 10 year old son, my son picks him up and holds him upside down to let him know who's boss! Try letting your cockerel know that you are at the top of the pecking order and not him. Any animal that exists in a pack (like chickens & dogs) at your home need to know that you are the leader of the pack, not them, so put him in his place and see what happens. Good luck and keep us posted!
     
  8. studentsigner

    studentsigner New Egg

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    How do I pick him up? He will not let you do that.
     
  9. SycolinWoodsChickens

    SycolinWoodsChickens Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:x2.

    We did the same thing last year except we used him for food ourselves. I understand if someone can't eat their roos though. Loved the look of my roo but he attacked everyone. I thought I'd be really upset when he was gone but I just enjoyed the chickens more. I could fill a feed bin without having to look behind me to see if I was going to get attacked.

    Also, I learned NOT to handle my roos as babies. The two I have now were not handled at all and they are not the mean, nasty attacking birds that i had last year. They keep their distance and every so often I remind them to keep away from me by just walking towards them if they get too close. So far, so good.

    If you want to pick him up maybe try picking him off the roost to start with once they go in the coop for the night.


    Good luck!!
     
  10. zookeeper15133

    zookeeper15133 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Do you give them scratch?I will go out and throw a couple cups of scratch around and sit down and watch them.

    When it is gone they all come up to me for more.

    I agree with previous poster. They are teenagers. They will come back around in a few weeks.

    The dollar stores around here were selling very large butterfly nets. About 3' across with a 4 or 5' handle. It works well, but you have to keep repairing the netting. Do you have a large fishing net?
     

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