Rooster versus Mother Hen: Will they ever resolve it?

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by Toetwo, Oct 5, 2013.

  1. Toetwo

    Toetwo Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jun 6, 2012
    Hi,
    I have a Australorp Mother hen with four chicks, three of whom I suspect of being roos. The babies are six 1/2 weeks old. For the past five or six days, the mother has been bringing them into the main coop (from the nursery coop across the way) and they've taken over the place, not letting the other hens come in to lay their eggs.

    At which point, the Rooster comes in huffing and puffing and eventually drives the mother hen and her brood OUT.

    The mother seems to want to be in the main coop. Every morning she marches her brood right over there and in (after the coop's been vacated by the 6 Ladies and Roo. All the hens are free ranging. All within eye sight of each other for weeks. MOther hen still not friendly to other hens, though more tolerant at this point than she was. Do I just let time take its course and hope they all join together before the first snow flies?

    I have the added element of two adolescent chicks that we adopted -- insanely -- around the same time as the chicks hatched. They, too, seem to be slowly adapting. They live in a dog cage inside the main coop's run--and have made NO attempt to move into the main coop as they are at the absolute bottom of the pecking order. Even the bantam seems to dominate them.

    I suppose I just have to continue watching and hoping. . .? Or do I remove the dog cage? (Not sure I can do that; too traumatic for me if not the two young hens!)
     
  2. centrarchid

    centrarchid Chicken Obsessed

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    Holts Summit, Missouri
    Leave as is. Mother hen will soon stop being as aggressive but her continued presence may make complete integration of her brood easier. The motherless juveniles will have the most difficult time and they will be OK as well. I have some hens that still promote the interest of their offspring in at 16 weeks post-hatch. When I have a game rooster out with a flock he will defend interest of offspring even longer.
     
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  3. Toetwo

    Toetwo Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jun 6, 2012
    Lordy, the entire flock of 6 are currently playing a scene from The Birds, attacking the poor two adolsecents--who as I type are hiding in a bush and the other hens and rooster are surrounding them. Can I go out and help or do I have to stay our of it. Too awful

    I think they're being kicked out of coop. They're headed over to the nursery now. Argh. I'm not made for farm life!
     
    Last edited: Oct 5, 2013
  4. centrarchid

    centrarchid Chicken Obsessed

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    Sep 19, 2009
    Holts Summit, Missouri
    Try to provide a creep feeder as refuge for the omega juveniles to eat and loaf in.
     
  5. Toetwo

    Toetwo Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jun 6, 2012
    And now an awful P.S.: A hawk took our bantam out yesterday. And this morning--don't ask, I should never have let them out, dummy me--one of our adolescents got taken. Leaving her sister alone, freaked and still attacked by the broody mother. And the adult hens. In the process of getting them out of the POURING rain, the adult hens and the rooster ended up in the nursery coop and the Broody hen and her littles, and the lonely one are in the big coop. It is 5 PM, raining--I don't take care about getting wet but the fog is good, apparently, at hiding HAWKS and the last thing I want is to lose another of my chickens. (What good is a Rooster anyway, I ask you?)

    Should I try to move the two flocks to their respective coops, or leave them as they are for the night? Will this cause yet more problems when the broody hen wants to stay there and the rooster doesn't want her there?

    Too, what do I do with Miss Lonely One? Will she die of loneliness now she doesn't have a buddy? The broody hen just went after her again. Argh.
    Note: last night, before the sibling was killed today, our dominique spent the night with them in the dog cage. Should I bring the dominique over to sleep with the adolescent?

    I feel as if I have really mucked this up and all I wanted was to have happy hens.
     

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