Shouldn't, but WANNA keep a possible rooster - need advice!

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by gryeyes, Oct 23, 2009.

  1. gryeyes

    gryeyes Covered in Pet Hair & Feathers

    I'm afraid my 4-wk old RIR is a rooster. I keep hoping "she" is just a late bloomer, and her tail feathers will start looking like those on the Ameraucana and Plymouth Rock - Barred pullets of the same age. There's a stripe of feathers starting to grow out of the fluff right down the middle of Rhoda's back, instead of the "cushion" that is already well filled on the other two.

    Granted, they're all different breeds.... so comparison isn't the best match.

    I have three 4-wk old chicks, the ones already mentioned, a 3-wk old Astralorp, and 2-wk old chicks: one BO and one SLW.

    I love all six of the danged birds, already. There is no "No Rooster" law in my neighborhood, and I do hear a rooster or two fairly near by. I promised my land-lady I'd only keep hens. The feed store said they'd take back any rooster and replace it with a hen (but they're not selling chicks any more this time of year). I don't particularly want to deal with a crowing rooster in my own yard, either.... but.....

    But I don't wanna give Rhoda up. I want her to "stay" a pullet. But if she turns out to be a rooster, I still don't want to give him up.

    Could I get some comments from folks about the reasons to KEEP a rooster? Plus some cons, for ummmm..... balance..... and to help me make an educated and reasoned decision if Rhoda should require a masculine name change.

  2. LegHorn-BusHorn

    LegHorn-BusHorn Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 25, 2009
    Near STL mo
    I didn't order a rooster eighter, but I got one and I still have him. He is beautiful and basically hasn't caused to much trouble. He does crow every morning (even weekends!) he alerts us to any problems there might be even in the middle of the night. I have fallen for him and don't intend to get rid of him. He calls the girls out for any treats before he eats. He only tried to attack me once but I put an end to that with a scream and a little kick.
    His name is Mr. Ida. Good luck with your decision.
  3. teach1rusl

    teach1rusl Love My Chickens

    Pro: Good ones alert the hens of dangers and attempt to protect them...

    Con: Bad ones can be aggressive even to humans

    I'll let others add to the pros/cons list...
  4. Uppity Peon

    Uppity Peon Chillin' With My Peeps

    It sounds as if youe aren't really certain Rhoda is a boy anyway. I can tell you my RIR pullets have smoother, less cushiony backs than my wyandottes have.

    I would say wait at least until you are certain, and in the meantime discuss it with the landlady.

    All three of my roosters have been fairly nice so far.
  5. elmo

    elmo Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 23, 2009
    Quote:Oh, what a beautiful bird! The brightness of his feathers testify to how healthy he is. Great job.
  6. rufus

    rufus Overrun With Chickens

    May 17, 2007
    Face it, we are criminals. If anyone asks, you paid for a hen and as far as you know it is a hen. Let them pay to do DNA on it if they doubt it. Most people don't know one chicken from another.

  7. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner True BYC Addict

    Feb 2, 2009
    Northwest Arkansas
    A good rooster has certain responsibilities within a flock.

    1. A good rooster keeps the hens fertile to insure offspring. So instinctively he needs to mate with the hens. This is also how he establishes dominance over them. To perform some of his other duties, he needs to establish dominance over the hens.

    2. A good rooster protects all members of his flock. In case of danger, he positions himself between his flock and the danger. He will give his life in defense of his flock.

    3. A good rooster is the prime lookout for danger, especially hawks.

    4. A good rooster takes care of his flock. He finds food for his flock and lets them eat first. He will find good nesting spots and show them to the girls. He will take care of young chicks, helping the broody keep them warm and helping keep them safe from the hens in the flock. Sometimes, if a broody deserts her chicks, the rooster will take over and help them reach self-sufficiency.

    5. A good rooster will keep order within his flock, breaking up fights between the hens if they get too violent.

    However, not all roosters are good. They can fail in any of the above responsibilities.

    A rooster may decide that you or someone else is a danger to his flock and will attack. Roosters have been known to kill preditors so they are certainly dangerous, especially to younger kids.

    A rooster may decide you or someone else, especially kids, are members of his flock and will try to dominate you or them. That makes them dangerous.

    A rooster crows. To some, that is aggrevating or annoying.

    Does this help?
  8. mandelyn

    mandelyn Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 30, 2009
    Goshen, OH
    First off, wait until you're sure. Does your land lady live there too? If not, wait until she says something. She may not.

    As for lagalities, wait until someone complains.

    I'm worried someone will complain because my neighbors have like 4 roosters and the same number of hens, plus turkeys. Their yard is way smaller than ours, and the neighbors closer. I'm worried they'll ruin it for everyone else by having too many roosters. The neighborhood is 1950's close together housing, ours the original farm house on a double lot. I purposely didn't put any east side windows on my coop, so Mr. Jibbers doesn't say a word until after 8am. The neighbor roosters? 6am or earlier.

    But one? Not a big deal, so wait it out. If she does turn out to be a he, just make rooster friendly housing (no eastern light prevents too-early crowing, even better is shutters on the north and south windows too, leaving the west open for air.)

    And hopefully he's sweet, and if not... then you'll feel that much better about rehoming him (since you should for legalities) if you don't want to do your outside chores with a rooster-be-good-stick in your hand.
  9. The Zoo

    The Zoo Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 13, 2009
    Hayward, CA
    You could be totally surprised at who enjoys the sound of a rooster crowing - I was.
    I got an unintentional rooster too and having raised him up didn't want to send him off to be dinner. I apologized to the neighbors, explained that he wasn't intended and was very surprised when they all said that either they couldn't hear him or that they really liked the sound of his crow.
  10. chicksngoats

    chicksngoats Out Of The Brooder

    Aug 15, 2009
    This was our first year having a rooster and I really enjoy having him. He is very sweet with the ladies, finding them food and making sure they eat first. He has tried to chase me once or twice, but when I've picked him up, he doesn't fight me and is very mellow.

    As far as the crowing goes....we were a bit nervous about that, but it hasn't been bad at all. We had a few mornings that he ended up outside our bedroom window before we were ready to wake up, but now that I'm locking up the coop at night, rooster isn't up crowing before we are [​IMG]

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