Roosters attacking young chicks

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by elieugene6, Jul 16, 2010.

  1. elieugene6

    elieugene6 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 17, 2010
    Western ny
    I have 3 old hens don't know how old. This spring I got 6 chicks from tsc, stupid me didn't realize that golden comets were sex linked chicks and they sure as heck don't want to inform you. So I now have 6 hens and 3 roosters and for the time being they are behaving fairly well. One old hen is separate as she decided to be broody for 3 months and wouldn't give it up no matter what I tried. I tried getting her day old chicks yep that didn't work. So I gave in and got her fertile eggs. So 2 jersey giants hatched out a week ago and she is happily taking care of her little ones in a small enclosure.

    Now for my problem those 3 day old chicks I got are getting fairly good size about 7 wks and want to be out running around. All my chickens are free range. I do have some rabbit enclosures that can be used if needed which is what the 3 of them are in now. I think they might all be roos or have at least one roo in there. At about 3 wks old I happened to have them outside running around by my feet and up came my other 6 who are about 16 wks now and the roo grabbed it by the neck and started shaking it. It only stopped when I grabbed it by the neck. The others tried to get at it when it stopped so I am sure they would do the same. These roos have done the same thing with kittens as well. Is there anything I can do to make them accept them? I like these roos and they are very friendly to me and the kids so won't be getting rid of any as long as they behave themselves they aren't pestering the hens to much and the old hens actually peck the roos especially the EE hen shes been mean since the day she arrived.

    These roos see the chicks and they just look for a chance to go grab them anything smaller than them and bird like (I had to save a baby robin from them earlier today) is fair game for them to destroy and they will kill and eat small rodents they actually do just about as well as the barn cat. Very weird I have never seen a chicken do this before. I need to introduce the 3 so that the hen can scratch with her chicks in the pen they are in and I can't while they are there because they might do the same thing to the babies (they tried for the robin as well)

    Help any ideas or is it just a roo thing? I don't remember the roos from my childhood attacking anything but me and my grandma. I know they can be mean but they are so sweet to us.
  2. kelliepulido

    kelliepulido Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 18, 2008
    st.john's mi
    my chickens will eat chicks and mice too they are brutal
  3. fordmommy

    fordmommy Dancing With My Chickens

    Jul 16, 2009
    Let me start by saying that the standard is 1 roo to 10 hens. You will have a problem when they are older for sure. And as for trying to brake them from that habit....that's what roos are supposed to do. Protect their flock of any invaders and that's what they are doing.

    If the babies had a mama hen, then she would be protecting them from those roos. When intruducing chickens to eachother, they need to be the same size or at least "nearly" the same size. Chickens will pick on the smaller ones. Even to the death in some cases. That's their instincts.

    My advice is to keep the little ones locked up until they are big. THEN intregrate them to the flock.

    And as for the will have to down-size or get many more hens. Sorry. Good luck.
    Last edited: Jul 17, 2010
  4. elieugene6

    elieugene6 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 17, 2010
    Western ny
    Yeah my roos kill mice too. I am actually planning on getting a lot more hens. The chicken barn I have has enough room to house about 100 chickens its huge. Just adding more as I have the money and chicks or hens become available. If I have to lock two of the roos up in seperate areas until I get more I will just because I know how hard to come by friendly roos are at least around here, we always had nasty ones when I was a kid and I refuse to keep a nasty roo and have my kids be afraid to go outside. Just a thought how late in the year is to late to raise chicks in Ny? The younger chicks aren't nearly as friendly as the older ones so if they end up being roos they will be dinner anyway.
  5. shellybean40

    shellybean40 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 15, 2010
    Boerne, TX
    2 of my roos killed one of my 8 week old hens. It was a sad day for me, I felt responsible. They are gone now. I have no use for mean animals.

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