Stupid question perhaps

Discussion in 'General breed discussions & FAQ' started by cresty, Jan 26, 2007.

  1. cresty

    cresty In the Brooder

    Jan 26, 2007
    I have what may be a stupid question.

    I'd like to start a backyard chicken coop to house about four laying hens (for eggs). But I'd also like to have at least one or two usual chickens (just for looks). My question is this: if I get a rooster, do I have to get the same breed? Example, if I get Rhode Island Reds and a couple feather legged chicks, do I need two roosters (one of each breed)? Will one rooster "service" all the hens and what does that do to the eggs if their fertilized?

  2. bmarshall61

    bmarshall61 In the Brooder

    Jan 11, 2007
    One roo is all you need, just be sure your roo is not to big for small hens. A small breed roo might be your best choice.
  3. beckt

    beckt Songster

    Jan 11, 2007
    Cresty, if you do not plan on hatching eggs you do not even need a rooster unless you want one just for the crowing. I do have 2 bantam roos but they were pretty much rescues. Well one was & the other was given to me by a friend who had way to many.
  4. dpike

    dpike In the Brooder

    Jan 11, 2007
    Bend, OR
    Thats good advice on the roo. We originally didn't want a roo, knowing we didn't need them for eggs and since we had no intention of breeding them. We did end up with a roo (it was a free mystery chick). I'm now glad we have one, for the crowing and the general management he provides for the flock. He's a great protector and herder. Fortunately he's a Silver Spangled Hamburg and all my girls are large girls (mostly Buff Orps). So even though they are all standards, hes only about 3/4 the size of the girls and doesn't really do any damage to them.

  5. V Chic Chick

    V Chic Chick Songster

    Jan 11, 2007
    Bristol, England
    The only difference that the roo will make to the eggs is that they will be fertile. If you have one a different breed, then they will be cross-breeds, but that doesn't matter if you don't want to show [​IMG]
  6. shandea

    shandea In the Brooder

    Mar 17, 2007
    I'm just reading up on all this chicken stuff, as I'm thinking of starting a backyard coop. Just have a question for you guys: I know that you don't need a rooster in order for your hens to lay eggs. But why does everyone think that is the case (mostly older people I've told who should know better)? They act like I'm totally clueless when I tell them it's not necessary. Are there certain breeds for which this is true? Just curious.
  7. Nifty-Chicken

    Nifty-Chicken Administrator

    Yup, it is amazing that about 80% of the people I talk to think you need a roo for eggs. Interesting that they don't think about their own species and about almost all the other egg laying / carying species that produce eggs regardless of the male being present or not.
  8. 4H kids and mom

    4H kids and mom Cooped Up

    Mar 10, 2007
    Southern Wisconsin
    I'm glad this came up. Here's another question I have for you all. How do I explain to my husband (in laymen terms lol) that it is perfectly alright to eat a fertile egg (since we'll have roos)? He thinks that all the eggs will be fertile and that they wont be good to eat, and is pretty much flat out refusing to eat any egg that I dont candle. I used to breed smaller birds so I know from experience that if you take an egg away before the female can begin incubating it, the embryo wont develope and the egg would be just fine to eat (though I dont know many people that would eat cockatiel eggs!). do I tell HIM that? [​IMG]
  9. BeckyLa

    BeckyLa Songster

    Jan 11, 2007
    N. Louisiana
    My experience has been that you can explain till you're blue in the face and it won't phase him until you show him. I'd take 2 store bought eggs and 2 eggs right out of the hen house. I'd break one of each into seperate bowls and cook up, seperately, the others. Without letting him know I was doing all this, I'd serve him the cooked eggs and ask him to tell you which was which. Then show him the ones in the bowls and ask him to pick out the one that was fertile. Meanwhile explain to him that until the egg is incubated, either by hen or bator, that it won't develop. Then give him time. imho
  10. Nifty-Chicken

    Nifty-Chicken Administrator

    I personally don't like fertilized eggs. Not that I think there is anything wrong with them, but it gives me the same feeling I get when I think about eating my own chickens. I can eat other chicken... just not mine.

    I guess it depends on what his concern is. If it is health related then there is no problem showing him that they are safe.

    I see fertilized eggs at the major supermarkets all the time. Sometimes they charge a premium for them... tell him he's eating a better deal!

    On the other hand, if his problems with eating fertile eggs are like mine, mental, then you'll have a harder time convincing him.

    When I first got chickens I wouldn't eat their eggs because it just seemed weird, but over time I got over it. I'm guessing this would happen with fertile eggs if I had them.... that in time I would be okay with it.

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