Sudden Behavior changes - Rooster

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by Indigosands, Oct 16, 2015.

  1. Indigosands

    Indigosands Chillin' With My Peeps

    494
    21
    113
    Apr 9, 2012
    Yucca Valley, CA
    As of the past few weeks there's been a lot of screeching and shrieking coming from the chicken yard. My 3 year old rooster has suddenly developed the mannerisms of a cranky old man. He bites any hen that tries to feed near him if he is at the feeder or waterer, he bites if they are in a perch or dustbath he wants and instead of calling them to treats he gobbles them up himself. The hens are mostly molting so they are not allowing mating but he still jumps them as soon as their backs are turned and forcefully mates them. He's not been a great rooster ( a bit of a wuss if you ask me) but never this bad tempered toward the hens. Humans, well that's another story. Should I remove him from the flock temporarily or will that worsen the situation?
     
  2. 1muttsfan

    1muttsfan Overrun With Chickens

    18,973
    1,443
    396
    Mar 26, 2011
    Upper Peninsula Michigan
    Quite honestly I would never keep a rooster that was aggressive with people, let alone one that is mean to his hens..
     
  3. Free Feather

    Free Feather Chillin' With My Peeps

    Has anything changed around him that would make him feel threatened?
     
  4. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Lots of Chickens Premium Member

    17,668
    5,999
    476
    Jul 16, 2015
    central Wisconsin
    I would remove him if he's going out of his way to make trouble, he could be not feeling too well, is he molting as well, it wouldn't hurt to separate him out and see how the flock behaves without his bad manners.
     
  5. Mrs. K

    Mrs. K Overrun With Chickens

    4,819
    1,489
    366
    Nov 12, 2009
    western South Dakota
    I have had hens get like this too. I put them down, I think everything hurts, and they are just tired and in pain.

    Crabby is just how they are. I would remove him, he has had a good run.

    MRs K
     
  6. Indigosands

    Indigosands Chillin' With My Peeps

    494
    21
    113
    Apr 9, 2012
    Yucca Valley, CA
    Changes: He was temporarily moved to a holding pen for 4 days while we were out of town in August because I had a family member watching the flock and his aforementioned human aggressiveness. He seemed to adjust to being back with them fairly well but I have never removed him from the flock before. I can't tell if he's still molting without catching him, he is a very slow molter. I added three young turkeys to the pen that shares a wall with them last month and it has made my Tom turkey very aggressive but otherwise no big changes. No adding or removing birds from their flock. He was good with the hens up until this change and as long as I have a broom in my hand he usually minds his own business. I guess I'll have to catch him and evaluate if he's got something going on that I can't see by looking at him. Didn't think about pain as a cause because he's not acting sick. I normally wouldn't keep a bird that's aggressive but for 2 reasons: 1, I have a son that has become somewhat attached to him and 2, I needed him for breeding.
     
  7. Free Feather

    Free Feather Chillin' With My Peeps

    This is something that is just going to have to be your choice. If you do not want him and do not want to deal with him, then give him away or get rid of him, I guess. If you like him and care for him, then keep him. Most on here will tell you to kill him, and some on here will tell you to have some mercy. I fall into the mercy category, but I cannot stop you, and everyone is going to have an opinion about it. Just know that it is possible that he may always just be like this for no reason other than he feels like being that way, just like any other living being. You might not be able to change him even if you try, and there might not be any illness or stress making him that way.
     
  8. 1muttsfan

    1muttsfan Overrun With Chickens

    18,973
    1,443
    396
    Mar 26, 2011
    Upper Peninsula Michigan
    The reason why I and many others would not keep an aggressive rooster around, is because they can be very dangerous particularly to children - they will jump and slash at their faces with their spurs. Even adults can be injured quite badly by a big aggressive roo. I am sure you would feel terrible if he were to attack one of your children's friends. There are many nonaggressive roos available if you need a breeding male. Certainly an aggressive rooster would be questionable as a breeding prospect.
     
    1 person likes this.

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by