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Discussion in 'General breed discussions & FAQ' started by BANTAMWYANDOTTE, Dec 27, 2011.
Let's not get it shut down. nobody else cares about my chickens. This is all I got lol
I'm Going to say I know people that can do that with their birds. Like the man said though there are levels to this ish...
For me it saves on aggravation of loosing young birds to events that have no bearing on qualities to be selected on later.
I truly believe you cannot do any free ranging or combining birds with certain families of fowl. Heck they may even be equal otherwise when it gets down to it. Some just have to be kept different.
I would think that keeping juveniles with a mature cock could suppress the young ones if left too long.
I can split any of my larger broods in two with one half staying near a cock and other half staying away and the majority of the halves kept away from cock will suffer deathloss of stags and sometime before chicks five weeks post-hatch. The genetic capacity is there to be problematic but tweaking of the environment controls even the start of the fights. I have never had the cock suppress development of any of the young birds so long as I do my job keeping everyone in good feed.
I suggest your guys try an experiment with a cock on a tie-cord where chicks and juveniles can control their proximity to him. Give that cock some tasty eats and see how he and the young birds interact. Then compare that to a stag not yet bull or even a hen not brooding some of the chicks. You will see the cock and most are will be special. I suspect much of the opinion based on games as being bad actors is based on those immature stags.
To add a little to the battle royal issue with immature American Games, some of it appears predictable as a consequence of the maturation process. My birds are prone to start during the transition between chicks and juveniles. This is about 5 weeks as head becomes feathered. It can be a little earlier if hen reared and they are weaned a little early. When hen stops clucking I can expect trouble as that is the time chicks setup pecking order for the first time. Problem can start earlier in brooder as those can start setting up pecking order at around three weeks and being game the pecking order challenges are all that it needed to get the action started. That may be pecking order alluded to by sdm111 but the gameness sets it apart. The next dahger time is 10 to 12 weeks when first adult feathers start coming in and the final time is when bullstag status is realized. Other events can set the scraps off but those are the peak times of worry for me.
Keep your stags on a walk with no hens or pullets within sight or hearing and your young stock MAY run together for a month or more longer. You will need a rough and tumble mature male to head up this walk. In this one respect young male chickens are like young men or boys. The trouble doesn't start until the boys discover the girls.
I have not tried the stag only route with games although male only groups I seen do get into a lot less trouble over rank that would set stage for problems in the games.
A rooster like the one you just described as being suppressed in my opinion is not game.