Rough Rooster

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by happymorrows, Jan 3, 2011.

  1. happymorrows

    happymorrows Chillin' With My Peeps

    201
    0
    119
    Feb 25, 2009
    Morganton, NC
    I have one rooster (EE) with 9 hens. He seems a little rough when he mates with them. All of the girls are showing a little feather wear on their backs. Is this normal? No one has lost feathers down to the skin or anything, they just look a little roughed up on the back. I have seen him in action and he bites their combs pretty hard and digs his claws into their backs. Is this just his "style"? Are all roos like this and some feather damage is to be expected? The roo is about a year old and pretty docile with people.

    Also, when I go in to close their door at night, if I disturb them too much and one of the girls hops down from the roost, he jumps down after them and will try to jump on their backs. ( I grab him after that and hold him till everyone settles down)

    Is there any way to make him sweeter to his ladies. He is a model citizen other than the domestic violence [​IMG]
     
  2. Judy

    Judy Moderator Staff Member

    34,028
    452
    448
    Feb 5, 2009
    South Georgia
    I have two roos with 12 hens. Only one hen has worn looking feathers on her back, and she seems to actively solicit being mated by the #2 roo. I see my roos grab the neck feathers, but not the combs. The hens can get pretty ugly cuts on their sides or backs from mating. I'd say he is too rough. I've never come across a way to change their behavior during mating.
     
  3. chicmom

    chicmom Dances with Chickens

    8,583
    148
    316
    Feb 24, 2009
    Strasburg Ohio
    That does sound like typical mating, but a little on the rough side. If he is pretty young, he may perfect his style and become more gentle. He may just need to practice. haha Perhaps you could trim his nails a bit and trim his spurs? I would hate to part with a "human friendly" rooster........But you can't have him tearing up the ladies. I'd keep an eye on him and maybe with time he'll become more gentle, and if not, he'll make a good pot of soup.
     
  4. happymorrows

    happymorrows Chillin' With My Peeps

    201
    0
    119
    Feb 25, 2009
    Morganton, NC
    I hadn't thought of trimming his nails. He doesn't have spurs. He came to me with them removed. Any suggestions on how to trim the nails?
     
  5. Judy

    Judy Moderator Staff Member

    34,028
    452
    448
    Feb 5, 2009
    South Georgia
    At night, with a light, and a helper. Perhaps also a towel around him, covering his eyes.

    Just trim with good scissors or nail clippers. Their claws are much like a dog's nails -- there is a vein extending out into the claw, so you only want to take the tip off. I've never done it, but read it's easier to see where to snip if the claw is upside down.
     
  6. saladin

    saladin Chillin' With My Peeps

    2,831
    108
    221
    Mar 30, 2009
    the South
    His behavior is perfectly normal. He'll calm some with age.

    As to nail trimming:

    1. Use a pair to dog claw trimmers.
    2. Get someone to help you. Catch him any time, but I prefer the daytime as it is much easier to see.
    3. Try not to cut the nails in the quick. If you do the nail will bleed. Don't panic; it's no big deal just don't cut the next one back as far.

    Should take less than a minute with help. I usually trim the bird I'm going to show about one week before I take them off. However, I have trimmed all the cocks on the yard at the same time (I generally have 30-40 cocks).
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by