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Should I buy a grown Roo, or raise myself?

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by nativegirl, May 24, 2016.

  1. nativegirl

    nativegirl Out Of The Brooder

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    So I'm curious if I was to add a full grown Roo to my flock how long it would take for him to be tame. Ive seen lots of Roos for sale on my local chicken pages I follow. Most of them will say, "he's great", "awesome personality", "likes to be held", etc.. Although that may be true for the ones that raised them. I feel like if I brought one home that I didnt raise that he might be aggresive in a new place. Obviously I would quarantine him and slowly introduce him to my flock. But I just wouldnt want him being aggressive to me or my kids when we go into the run with them. So question is, should I buy a full grown Roo, or opt for a younger one to raise myself?
     
  2. Pork Pie Ken

    Pork Pie Ken Monkey Business Premium Member

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    There is no guarantee that a roo that you raise yourself will be "wonderful", but you may feel more comfortable doing so. Personally i don't baby my roo and i make sure that he has a healthy respect of me. You may wish to consider searching for "training or managing roos" in the search box and seeing what comes up. I seem to recall there being an active thread "Rooster chat" (or something like that) where you could also see what peeps are discussing. From my experience, and what i have read, the temperament varies so greatly that its difficult to make generalisations - they can be a pain when they are going through their "teenage" period though.

    Good luck
    CT
     
  3. Folly's place

    Folly's place Overrun With Chickens

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    x2. An adult polite rooster generally will work out, although occasionally one will develop aggression issues at age two or three. The big concern would be about biosecurity; will he introduce diseases to your flock? Mareks disease is forever, for example! Growing your own chicks from a safe source will take another year, but may be a good choice, IF you get a group, and can cull down to the right birds. There are many nice roosters looking for homes, and if you can trust the seller, go for it. Mary
     
  4. nativegirl

    nativegirl Out Of The Brooder

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    Theres definitely a lot of nice looking Roos for sale right now. But the biosecurity is a good point. I might just go the route of getting a few straight run chicks then and hope for a Roo in the mix. I'd like to eventually breed my chicky girls so that I can have some meat chickens along with my egg layers.
     
  5. feedman77

    feedman77 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    If you have a tsc or farm store that has chicks. Look for the pan fry special bin.

    It is supposed to be only left over cockerels after hatchery sorting.

    If you want chicks. And don't want to chance straight run and get more than one roo.
     
  6. nativegirl

    nativegirl Out Of The Brooder

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    Well my TSC actually removed all their chick bins. But I know 2 places nearby I can probably get chicks from. The one place is a certified chick hatchery and the other is where I got my barnyard mixes.
     
  7. Mrs. K

    Mrs. K Overrun With Chickens

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    Just to confuse the issue, I would go for the full grown rooster! haha.

    But just to check, how old are your birds? If they are laying, then they are old enough for a rooster, and a rooster is the easiest add to make. They will all be in love with him by morning! And when you get an older rooster, if he is pretty close to a year old, he is going to act like he is going to act, for the most part. I think you would be more apt to get a pleasant rooster from a multi- generational flock. There are lots of cases of home raised roosters starting out as pets and becoming the very devil.

    However, roosters really change the dynamics of the flock. He will look to you, the hens will look to him. Generally speaking, he will put himself between you and the hens. Then hens will become less pet like, and more flock like with a rooster.

    And considering the size of the rooster's brain, and add in a good dose of hormones, well, one needs to always be aware of a rooster. If your children are very young, I would wait until they are older. Lots of roosters have ruined the whole chicken experience for kids.

    And last but not least, if you get a rooster, you must be prepared to cull or remove him from a flock, if he does not work out, that might be nearly immediately or it might be years down the road. But one cannot wish a rooster nice, and nearly all of us have tried. He may be an sweetheart from the get go, roosters are just a crap shoot, and you need to be prepared.

    Mrs K
     
  8. nativegirl

    nativegirl Out Of The Brooder

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    Well thank you for your input. With that in mind I might just wait a while before I add a Roo to the flock then. I just got my girls this year(first time chicken owner) and I'm quite enjoying them in the pet sense. My RIR's are 6mo and my Barnyard mixes are 18weeks. My kids adore them and enjoying petting them and feeding them. I'll probably just wait until next year when the initial excitement is gone. The reason I wanted a Roo in the first place was so that I could breed him with the others for meat chicks. But I love my chicky girls and dont want anyone getting in the way of our daily lovings and attention.
     
  9. Pork Pie Ken

    Pork Pie Ken Monkey Business Premium Member

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    If you wish, you could keep a roo in a separate coop / run and then just put the girls you wish to hatch from with him for a short time each day (not sure on duration / frequency). That way, you get your fertile eggs, but not the potential hassles - just a thought...

    CT
     
  10. rebrascora

    rebrascora Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I'm not sure what you expect in the way of meat birds from a cross with layers but I can tell you that the average farmyard mutt cockerel or pullet that would result from such a cross, takes twice as long as meat birds (ie 20 weeks instead of 10) to get to half the size and as a result the meat is not as tender (needs to be slow cooked) and the cockerels taste different because by then they have developed testes and hormones.It makes no sense to me to eat the pullets because they are a better prospect for laying, but of course you could then cull your older hens if they aren't pets... personally my girls earn retirement. .

    I have cockerels in my flock to be self sustaining and I allow my hens to raise chicks and I eat the excess cockerels but they are not anything like chicken you buy from the shops.... all plump breast and chunky thighs.... these are lean, sinewy athletes ....and they are an acquired taste.

    Raising a cockerel from a chick and expecting that it will then be tame as an adult with a flock to protect is a big ask, especially when you have children. Juvenile cockerels are not pleasant to pullets and hens (think rape and pillage) due to raging hormones and can suddenly turn from being the favourite chick to needing a broom to enter the pen and being unable to turn your back on them. If you have never been flogged by a cockerel, I can assure you it is an intimidating and painful experience for an adult but seriously dangerous for children. Older cockerels or roosters brought up in a flock which has multiple roosters and has been taught some manners is probably a better bet, if you do decide to go ahead, but even then, their temperament can change once they have a flock of hens of their own to protect.

    I think perhaps you might be better buying proper meat bird chicks (Cornish x or Freedom Rangers) if you specifically want to raise birds for meat. I find the effort of slaughtering, plucking/skinning and butchering my excess farmyard cockerels more effort than the meat I get from them, but I do it anyway rather than waste it.

    Good luck whatever you decide, I just felt that you seemed to be under the misunderstanding that the chicks raised from having a cockerel in your laying flock would make "meat birds" and think you would probably be significantly disappointed with the result.

    Regards

    Barbara
     
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