Roosters and new girls?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by JodyJo, Oct 21, 2011.

  1. JodyJo

    JodyJo Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have a mixed flock, 12- 29 week old hens, 2 roosters and 3- 19 week old EE pullets....if, IF the EE's are getting close to POL, shouldn't the roos being paying more attention to them?

    They are almost a separate small flock, added late, they don't free range with the other girls, could this be one reason, or are they just not old enough?
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  2. debid

    debid Overrun With Chickens

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    My cockerel treated the pullets like juveniles until they started getting red in their faces. He was all over them then [​IMG]

    My mom did an introduction like yours with younger pullets going into an established flock and it was the same thing -- rooster herded the young girls but didn't try to mate until their faces reddened.
     
  3. teach1rusl

    teach1rusl Love My Chickens

    Personally, I think that's a good sign (at least regarding your roosters). Some roosters will mount anything, too young or not (and often chicken or not...lol). A more mature, or mature acting rooster won't generally attempt to mate with pullets until they're ready/old enough/of laying age. My roo didn't put the moves on my newbies until they were already laying...and he still prefers girls in the original flock.
     
  4. JodyJo

    JodyJo Chillin' With My Peeps

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    then I will watch and wait, thanks to all who replied....

    I do have good roos, not a problem with them at all!
     
  5. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Chicken Obsessed

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    Roosters do not carry a little red book and check off each hen as he mates them, being careful to rotate the hens. I'm not sure what gets his interest, but he is more likely to mate with the hens around him,say a target of opportunity instead of a planned campaign. But it is random. There is no set sequence.

    A rooster only has to mate with a hen once every two weeks or so to enable her to lay fertile eggs, but a rooster is capable of mating many times in one day. That 10 to 1 ratio you may have heard about for a hen to rooster ratio is the ratio that commercial operations use to ensure fertile eggs in a pen breeding situation, where you may have 20 roosters with 200 hens. They have found that they need to feed that many roosters to keep the fertility rate up purely due to the random nature of which hen a rooster will mate with, although physically a lot fewer roosters could keep all those eggs fertile if they would properly rotate the hens.

    Since your 19 week olds are not hanging with the main flock, which is perfectly normal by the way, they are not easy targets of opportunity. I would not put too much faith in how the roosters are treating them as to how close they are to laying. If they willingly squat for a rooster, that is a good sign, but don't get bummed out if the roosters are not seeking them out.

    Some pullets will be close to laying at 19 weeks, but many will not. It is very individual with each pullet. Since EE's are mixes and not a distinct breed, they do not have breed tendencies. How early they tend to lay (remembering that it is very individual with each pullet) depends on how early their parents and grandparents tend to lay.
     
  6. JodyJo

    JodyJo Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:Got ya....I guess I really don't care if the roos breed with them, or when they actually lay, although IF I get the green/blue eggs, I will be THRILLED! I really want them all to be ONE flock....I hate seeing them segregated out...protection in numbers and all...my 2 roos do a good job, I have a LOT of land, they utilize quite a bit of it, I am actually surprised they free range as far as they do, each roo seems to have his girls and they split the chore of keeping them all safe...I love to sit and watch the mechanics of it all!

    Thanks for the info....!
     

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