Should I seperate the rooster from the hens?

lculp

Hatching
Dec 4, 2020
3
4
9
I've had the same rooster and hens together for 8 months since they were chicks. He was supposed to be a pullet but ended up a roo and we decided to keep him. But now our hens are look a little rough from his mating and have though about separating them. Would I be able to put him outside of the coop and run with his own house and give him free range but with no access to the hens? He would still see them through the fence.

I have tried hen saddles but the hens got very agitated by them. Our last resort is to send him to the freezer but we have become attached to him so I would rather not.

Any suggestions?
 

lculp

Hatching
Dec 4, 2020
3
4
9
Thanks for the reply. If the hens are within his sight will that cause problems? He's escaped the fencing before and just ended up walking the perimeter of the fence.
 

Mrs. K

Free Ranging
12 Years
Nov 12, 2009
10,874
17,755
726
western South Dakota
About this time of year, feathers are old, and hens begin to look like hell. What do they think of the rooster? If they stand by him, pay attention to him, and seem comfortable with him, just ignore the feathers. Bareback chickens bother people way more than they bother chickens.

Soon you will go into molt, they will all look a lot better, and generally with a little age, the rooster's technique improves, and you probably won't have such rough looking girls again, until right before they molt.

Mrs K
 

MissE

Crowing
Oct 17, 2020
1,098
3,361
331
Northern MN
A lot of mine have bare backs, but if I were to separate my rooster, they would not be happy. They follow him everywhere and argue about who gets to sleep next to him. Just last night, right before it was completely dark, I hear BA-BA-BA-BAGACK! She wouldn't stop. Went down to the coop, and she was trying to force another hen to move so she could cuddle with the big guy.
 

Ridgerunner

Crossing the Road
13 Years
Feb 2, 2009
29,487
27,183
997
Southeast Louisiana
I tend to agree with leaving him with the girls as long as none are being injured. If the girls are being injured, such as a cut, that is bad and you need to do something. The two areas to watch are the back where his claws are grabbing during mating and the back of her head. Part of the mating act is that he has to grab the back of her head, that's her signal to raise her tail out of the way so he can hit the target. If you see cuts or blood there or on her back it is time to do something.

Some flocks of hens really like having a rooster around. Others seem to be a lot less stressed if you remove a rooster. Each chicken has its own individual personality and each flock has its own dynamics. That's a big part of why I like to make my decisions based on what I see instead of what some stranger like me says over the internet.

Would I be able to put him outside of the coop and run with his own house and give him free range but with no access to the hens? He would still see them through the fence.
You certainly can. They are yours and you can do what you want. There is a danger from predators but lots of people free range without problems. Others are wiped out almost immediately. I'd lock him up securely at night, that can help a lot against predators.

You don't get guarantees with chickens and behaviors. I'd expect him to hang across the fence from the girls for a lot of the day, though foraging some. The girls will likely hang near the fence across from him a good part of the time. Would they prefer to be together? Probably, especially him. But they should be OK apart like that.

I don't know where you are located. Since they are 8 months old that kind of implies you may be south of the equator where seasons are switched from here so molting would be swapped. If the entire feather is out the feather should grow back reasonably soon. If any part of the feather shaft is left then the feather will not grow back until the hen molts.
 

taogal

Chirping
5 Years
Nov 8, 2016
6
0
62
I tend to agree with leaving him with the girls as long as none are being injured. If the girls are being injured, such as a cut, that is bad and you need to do something. The two areas to watch are the back where his claws are grabbing during mating and the back of her head. Part of the mating act is that he has to grab the back of her head, that's her signal to raise her tail out of the way so he can hit the target. If you see cuts or blood there or on her back it is time to do something.

Some flocks of hens really like having a rooster around. Others seem to be a lot less stressed if you remove a rooster. Each chicken has its own individual personality and each flock has its own dynamics. That's a big part of why I like to make my decisions based on what I see instead of what some stranger like me says over the internet.


You certainly can. They are yours and you can do what you want. There is a danger from predators but lots of people free range without problems. Others are wiped out almost immediately. I'd lock him up securely at night, that can help a lot against predators.

You don't get guarantees with chickens and behaviors. I'd expect him to hang across the fence from the girls for a lot of the day, though foraging some. The girls will likely hang near the fence across from him a good part of the time. Would they prefer to be together? Probably, especially him. But they should be OK apart like that.

I don't know where you are located. Since they are 8 months old that kind of implies you may be south of the equator where seasons are switched from here so molting would be swapped. If the entire feather is out the feather should grow back reasonably soon. If any part of the feather shaft is left then the feather will not grow back until the hen molts.
Just dropped in to say that my flock are all 8-month olds, the roo and the hens. We live in Texas and these birds were hatched around New Years. Except for that one bad week in February, the winter weather isn’t bad for youngsters, so maybe she’s in the south, too.
 

Chicalina

Crowing
Aug 1, 2020
3,103
4,574
391
UK
You could get more hens. I've never had a rooster who wore my hens feathers off and I've had far smaller ratios than 1:8. Have you trimmed his spurs?
 

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