Socializing a new Rooster

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by cluckey, Sep 8, 2015.

  1. cluckey

    cluckey Chillin' With My Peeps

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    We just picked up a rooster to add to our flock of hens. We have 12 year old hens and the rooster is a 5 month old Welsummer. He was raised by a broody hen in a large flock with very little human interaction. My hens were all hand raised and are very sweet and friendly. The rooster is in Quarantine right now in the garage but is very skittish and flighty when we are around. How do I help get him used to us and manageable? I dont expect him to get lovey and cuddley however, I'd like to be able to handle him in case he ever gets injured or we need to catch him. Any advice would be appreciated!
    Thank you!
     
  2. RJSorensen

    RJSorensen Chicken George

    Treats… and time to sit and feed him. It will perhaps take a while, but he is still young enough to change if you interrupt his current habit(s). Although at first it would not seem possible if you keep your distance and have patients he will learn you mean treats and the way to a roosters heart is through his stomach. It would seem that the male species is susceptible to food. If you want it to happen, and you are willing to put in the time (not much per day, but many days) you can most likely achieve your wishes.

    Best to you and your birds,

    RJ
     
  3. cluckey

    cluckey Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thank you! I plan on sitting with him as much as possible. Treats sound like a good idea too!
     
  4. Folly's place

    Folly's place Chicken Obsessed

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    On the other hand, cockrel who avoids you isn't a bad thing! He'll figure out that you bring food and goodies, will be busy getting to know the girls, his primary responsibility. The hens will be busy correcting his rude behavior until he integrates in your flock. Mary
     
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  5. DanEP

    DanEP Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Just ignore him , treat the girls and he will follow them and get used to you and I agree having him avoid you is not bad at all. The job of the girls is lay eggs and be pets. The job of the rooster is to look after the girls that's all. As long as he is good to the girls and not aggressive he is doing his job and will come to trust you in time. Trust is not being your best buddy tho and that's ok . He was born to father chicks and look after his girls. I can handle my rooster when needed but he still likes to stay a couple of feet away from people.
     
  6. cluckey

    cluckey Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Hmm so let the hens train him and show him the rules? You think this will work with such a flighty,wildish bird? Or does he need the one on one time with me and other humans?
     
  7. Mrs. K

    Mrs. K Overrun With Chickens

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    A rooster with hens is really not going to be interested in people very much. He is interested in the hens, that is his focus. However, if the flock is calm around you, he will calm down. However, adding a rooster will change the flocks response to you. Hens fall in love to an adult rooster. They quit looking to you, and start looking to him for treats. As he is young, at first they will ignore him, or school him with thumps. He will have to work his way up through the ranks. But in a couple of months, those old biddies will be listening to his every coo.

    Generally when I come to the pen or flock, Chrome sees me first. That is his job, he needs to see any change in the surroundings. That is a good sign. You feed him, he calls the girls and he feeds them.

    I have a heck of a time catching any of my birds, I seldom need to do it. If I do need to do it, I use a fish net, like the one for scooping fish into a boat. They will squawk, but once they push against the net, they trap themselves and calm right down.

    If you want to feed him, and spend time with him, he will calm down before the quarantine is over, but his demeanor will change when he has his own flock, and the hens demeanor will also change with a rooster in the flock.

    Mrs K
     
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  8. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    Just spend lots of time with and around him..... not for long each time, just frequently.....and he will get used to your presence and learn you are not going to hurt him.
    Don't try to handle him or touch him, just move slowly and talk softly, don't always bring treats but sometimes do.
    ..and be calm yourself, if you are nervous or anxious he can sense that and it will make him nervous and anxious, just like any other animal.

    By time quarantine is done he should fine with you.
    Then you can let with out with the hens and they will take him to school.... and you will look like his best friend ever until he wins them over.
     
  9. cluckey

    cluckey Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks for the advice. We do need him to help protect our flock so maybe being super buddy buddy with him isnt the best idea. He's settling down already just from the last day or so. I tend to always over evaluate things with the chickens. Thanks again for all the help!
     
  10. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    Well, he needs to know that he doesn't need to protect the flock against you, that is the key, so he needs to be buddy enough know you won't hurt him.
     
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