rooster visits disrupt social order?

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by kaki, Nov 20, 2011.

  1. kaki

    kaki Out Of The Brooder

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    Greetings all,
    My father in law and I split a batch of chicks bought in April/May this year.
    I have 3 chooks at home and he has 3 more in another location, and we have only one rooster. I used to keep him at home, but when he started to crow I had to send him to the 'farm' (father in law's place). My father in law kept his 3 chooks from the batch with other birds so they couldn't get to the food so well amongst the other birds and are 'stunted' - still haven't grown combs or started laying. My home birds are like full adults now, so I decided to take my chooks to the farm for a day - bad idea. There was no loving going on, only fighting. Then I decided to bring the rooster back home again temporarily, just to get a batch of eggs for the incubator. However, at the moment he is trying to stop my chooks from eating, and not showing any interest in them, even though they squat and stick their bums out when I come close (which they have always done.)
    My question is, can I bring the rooster around only when I want to incubate some eggs, or will this destroy social ties between the two groups? Will I have to wait until 'his' hens start laying before I can incubate? Might he remember that he used to live here before, and get down to business, or will he constantly be trying to readjust to each group of hens?
    Does anyone else do this with their flocks?

    I know I'd be happy if I was sent on 'fertilizing trips', but then I don't live in the strict world of chicken relationships...
     
  2. Mahonri

    Mahonri Urban Desert Chicken Enthusiast Premium Member

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    It will take at least a week or two for him to show them he is the boss and for them to submit to him.

    Good luck.

    You could get him decrowed and just keep him....
     
  3. froggiesheins

    froggiesheins Overrun With Chickens

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    How do you decrow a roo? Oh man that would be so cool if you could.

    Quote:
     
  4. kaki

    kaki Out Of The Brooder

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    Jul 24, 2011
    I've never heard of anyone doing that with a roo, only dogs... I wouldn't even know where to take him here in Japan...

    I did read a few posts about ways to stop him crowing at inconvenient hours, such as keeping the coop dark (failed) or putting him in a box at night so he cant extend his neck to crow (failed) or putting him in the car (failed when the wife said the car smelled like chickens). Now he is almost twice the size that he was before, so I will give the box idea a go again.

    The main thing is whether constantly changing the group he is with will cause a problem or not... Are there any tricks to make it work better?
     
  5. brandislee

    brandislee Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I'm no expert, but I say it's asking for disaster and far too stressful to move him back and forth. Chickens are flock animals and they have a very defined social order- moving a rooster back and forth messes that up, and can seriously stress out both the hens and the rooster. I wouldn't do it. I understand the desire for a self sustaining flock, but if you're not in the position to keep a rooster then it's not really a realistic goal for you.
     
  6. WhiteMountainsRanch

    WhiteMountainsRanch Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Not to mention transmitting diseases around.
     
  7. spiritdance

    spiritdance Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Can you just get fertile eggs from "the farm"?
     
  8. kaki

    kaki Out Of The Brooder

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    Jul 24, 2011
    I could get fertile eggs from the 'farm' if they were laying.
    I must also say that I dont agree with the way my father in law keeps his chickens. He has been keeping them for years in small cages, so I made a fence around the property so they can free-range and a big chicken house big enough for about 30 chooks with a wire mesh floor made of BBQ grills that slide out for cleaning. He hasnt cleaned it once, and puts the feed boxes and nesting boxes (open topped) under the house and they fill up with poo. He had no problem with picking up the eggs out of the poo and putting them in the fridge. We bought 10 chicks, 2 of which died and then I took the 3 hens I have now. He promptly went out and took some 'homeless' birds that someone he knew was giving away - all 70 of them. The house I made was massively overcrowded, and our bought chicks couldnt get to the food and one more of them died because of that. Add to that the fact that he comes back from the farm for 2 days every week, leaving no one to feed the chickens for that time. My hens are fully grown and laying, his still dont have combs or wattles yet.
    The chickens he received stopped laying all together after a few months, and I separated the bought ones and the received ones as soon as I could. Now I am slaughtering the received chooks at a rate of about 5 every weekend, but they are old and the meat is really small and tough.
    I made proper nesting boxes and am in the process of making large feeding boxes for the times when he is away from the farm, and I am slowly convincing him of the value of hygiene in the coop, but it is amazing how hard headed Japanese father in laws can be. My wife is trying to help, but he doesnt even really listen to her.
    This is his hobby, and I came in to his place so it's hard for me to convince him that some things need to be done properly.

    Sorry for the story-of-my-life post, but I would like to hear someone say that his little ones will be okay...?
     

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