Roosters that attack

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by undermywings, Apr 18, 2009.

  1. undermywings

    undermywings chicken chaser

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    Try to remember that roosters are protectors of your little flock of egg layers. They are doing their job and you want to kill them for that.
    When I was a little kid, we had 3 eggs in our first incubator. Only one hatched. It was an araucana rooster. He was like our little puppy, very spoiled and loving.
    When he grew up, we got him 6 hens. Never again did he follow us around. He declared himself 'protector of the realm of cute chicks'. We had to take a 6 foot stick out with us to collect eggs and he quickly learned to keep a 6 foot distance. But we had to never turn our back on him. His spurs would dig deep so we also learned to keep that 6 foot distance from him.
    Turned out to be a very small price to pay.
    Early one morning my mom yelled that something was getting the chickens and I ran out the back door. My rooster was fending off 3 large dogs from under a high chair. Successfully.
    It was one of those amazing animal fights you never forget. The bloody noses of those dogs, the yiking and frenzy.
    I whacked them off with my 6 foot stick till they ran off and under the hole they had dug under the fence, and picked up my rooster and cleaned him up. He was weak but recovered.
    We could not find any hens until the next day when every single one came out of hiding. He protected them all and saved the whole flock.
    That was his job and he did it well.
    Please don't let culling be your first or only conclusion. We let our roosters guard the old free range hens that we have in retirement. We don't cull them either as they'll miraculously lay eggs even after 12 years.
    The pleasure of being a back yard chicken farmer is that our flock are our pets. We don't kill our dogs or cats just because they slowed down. At my age, I can sympathize.
    Roosters find their hens bugs and grass and seeds, call to them, stand guard over them while they eat the feast he found for them. He watches for flying predators and sounds the alarm, will battle a rogue dog or cat, stands between danger and his hens, he is truly the watchdog of the hen house.
    Sometimes the most protective ones will even perceive you as a threat and come after you. You just entered a bulldog's palace. But you own the kingdom; just speak softly and carry a big stick.
    You should reconsider how to keep such a fine protector so you don't loose your hens and your eggs. Especially since he thinks the same way about them as you do.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 18, 2009
  2. Homesteading_Bound

    Homesteading_Bound Chillin' With My Peeps

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    How True.....I walk out the back door and if I'm not sure where they are the animal instinct comes out in me ...always looking around.. as I walk to the barn, getting firewood etc. I'm watching my back unless there in front of me.

    I'm going to look at the Roosters in a different light..

    First...I'm going to go find a long stick.. [​IMG]


    You have some fine points that I have not considered...Thanks greenapple [​IMG]
     
  3. undermywings

    undermywings chicken chaser

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    Thank you Homesteading. How fast can you run? [​IMG]
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 28, 2009
  4. Sunny Side Up

    Sunny Side Up Count your many blessings...

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    Loxahatchee, Florida
    That's a great story about a remarkable rooster!

    I like keeping roos with my hens, I think it makes for a more balanced chicken society and I really appreciate how those guys watch out for their hens. They have a whole vocabulary of signals they give to alert the girls to food & to danger.

    But I've met enough mannerly roosters to ever want to tolerate aggression towards me, my children, or my visitors from any uppity bird. I want us all to be able to go freely about the yard without the shark theme music from Jaws playing in our heads, wondering Where Is That Mean Rooster and When Will He Attack Next?

    A rooster can be a good protector & provider in addition to being a gentleman around the humans. I always feel a bit sorry to have to dispatch roos like that simply because we've already reached our limit of flock husbands. There's no need to put up with aggressive roosters when there are other mannerly ones coming in for dinner.
     
  5. undermywings

    undermywings chicken chaser

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    I understand a peaceful backyard. I have never purchased a rooster but inevitably end up with them purchased as pullets or hatched at home. Every one of our banty roosters was a sweetheart. I've just purchased 12 'pullets' and know that there will be a rooster. Our odds are good that 3 to 7 will be. Always has been the case from any breeder in my experience. But my breeds are all gentle ones except for my two araucanas. I know that this breed is used for fighting cocks by criminally prone idiots.
    You are right to keep a peaceful yard if one is just too vicious.
    There are alternatives for those who have said they love their roosters as pets.
    We get attached to them sometimes so we find a new home or make a separate pen where they live peacefully and so do we. Usually we have to separate the roosters anyway just because they fight among themselves and we have smaller pens and coops to keep everyone happy. Like any household there are many rooms. We have banty pens, the old folks home, the palace where egg layers rule, etc.
    We also alternate who goes out of their large pens to free range the rest of the acres.
    Anyone else have solutions to bad boy roosters?
     
  6. bonitapatrita

    bonitapatrita New Egg

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    I have an Araucana rooster who i have a love/hate relationship with. He was in a batch of pullets i bought. I did not want any roosters in my flock. Now Patches is my baby. I can catch him and hold him. he will fall asleep in my arms. He loves to go on walks with me and hang out and "help" in the garden. the other side of the story is that he will all of a sudden jump at me when I let him out of his pen in the morning. He also chases and attacks my 4 year old son. He has to be penned up some of the time for this reason. I keep him separate from the hens too, but where he can still talk to them and see them. I know it is important for him to still feel like he is doing his job. I struggle with wanting to get rid of him and keeping him, because he is my pet. I really wish I could find him a nice home (not here) where he could be live out his days and get to be with his own flock of hens. He is a beautiful rooster too.
     
  7. Robin L

    Robin L Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I too have a rooster that is attacking me and my 11 year old daughter but unlike most of you here he is not a good protector (crows fly over head he is the first in the coop even if he has to run over a hen, does not tell the hens there is food to be had just grabs it and runs as far away from the hens as he can, etc) but I still cant butcher him. I am currently looking for another home for him and the people that get him will know what he does.
     
  8. Peeper7

    Peeper7 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Silly question maybe...but how exactly does a rooster use his spurs? I've been flown at by my roos, but never spurred. I'd rather not find out ....
    If I have several roosters and hens, will they divide themselves into groups of females for each rooster?
     
  9. Backyard Farm

    Backyard Farm Certified Personal Chicken Attendant

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    WOW! Greeenapple..

    Great story!!
     
  10. Sunny Side Up

    Sunny Side Up Count your many blessings...

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    Loxahatchee, Florida
    Quote:There are NO silly questions here!
    A rooster uses his spurs as he jumps up, flaps his wings to give him more height, raises his feet up in front of him, and then brings them down quickly, jabbing his target with his long sharp spurs. You might be able to watch one in action when he's sparring with another roo.
    It HURTS, and can cause SERIOUS INJURY depending on where they jab you, and if it gets infected afterwards. It can really really do CONSIDERABLE DAMAGE to a small child.
    It's not at all nice to have an unpredictable roo loose in your yard, not knowing when you'll feel the flap & the jab of those spurs in the back of your legs.
    A rooster who does this to any human in my yard will instantly lose his beauty in my eyes. There are so many more roos who are both handsome and mannerly to take this bird's place.

    If I have several roosters and hens, will they divide themselves into groups of females for each rooster?

    Yes, more or less. Often the groupings differ each week, some groups growing, others shrinking.​
     

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