Tell me all about roosters

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by IamRainey, Oct 11, 2018.

  1. IamRainey

    IamRainey Songster

    A month ago I had a sweet 10 week old little Black Copper Marans pullet named Maude. Maude was pretty and she was developing the prettiest amber colors among the black feathers. So...about a week ago (with the assistance of folks here) I discovered that she was actually Monsieur Maurice.

    Today M. Maurice crowed for the first time! Things are moving fast around here! And he had the good manners to do it at about 10:30. Whatta mensch!

    So now I need to know all about roosters. I assume he'll become dominant in the flock/s. I have 2 hens that are already about 18 months old. So far they've been the dominant ones. Then I have a second flock of 15 week olds which includes M. Maurice. They've all decided to live together nicely BUT they are 2 distinct flocks inhabiting the same space. What will M. Maurice's relationship to each flock be like?

    If he's a late riser -- at least for this morning -- is that likely to be his habit? Because I could live with a bird who crows at 10 and I'd expect my neighbors to learn to live with it too. Even when his crowing achieves it's full volume and resonance.

    What does this new talent mean about his maturity and readiness to make natural women of my 2 laying hens?

    What else will be new and different or what else should I know to take good care of him and recognize typical rooster behaviors?

    Thanks in advance to everyone who shares their expertise so generously!
  2. chuckachucka

    chuckachucka Crowing

    Mar 22, 2016
    I don't have experience with separate flocks but I would imagine he will eventually win over both crowds of females and they will become a combined flock.

    The girls just cant resist when roosters tidbit and come running. It doesn't take long for them to accept that mating is the price to pay for a rooster's skills and he will eventually end up king of the flock.

    As for the crowing thing... Yeah I wouldn't hold onto much hope of him only crowing after ten am unfortunately. When they start it's a random thing but they soon get into the habit of crowing at sunrise and then quite often throughout the day. Sometimes they crow because they hear or think they hear a disturbance, sometimes they just seem to enjoy it, but morning crowing is like a genetic imperative or something. They cannot resist.
  3. Dancing With Chickens

    Dancing With Chickens Songster

    Jul 24, 2018
    North Carolina
    I am going to have to warn you, I've read a lot on Black Copper Maren roosters who were plain evil, so be on the lookout! On a good note, here's my experience and advice on roosters:
    I don't keep a rooster simply because I don't want to hatch eggs at the moment and I don't have the room. I've bought batches of chicks and ended up with roosters, and not one of them was mean. They would cuddle on my lap and stand by my feet to protect me. Their crows were the goofiest thing to watch! I don't think he'll start to "get with hens" until he's older, but be sure that he doesn't mate with one hen to much, otherwise he could pull feathers out of their backs. Chicken saddles are a good idea, and can be bought from Etsy and Amazon for a good price and good quality. Roosters have their own pecking order, so he stands apart from the hen's squabbles. Sometimes a hen will be higher on the pecking order, but roosters usually stand apart. He will break up any squabbling between hens usually and will always have an eye on the sky. It's also so cute to watch him tidbit for his favorite hen! It doesn't matter where the hen stands on the order, so don't worry about that! I've heard about chickens having two different pecking orders in one flock before, and it's quite common! Hoped this helps :)
    Hyper_Chicken05 and azygous like this.
  4. azygous

    azygous Free Ranging

    Dec 11, 2009
    Colorado Rockies
    Roosters are extremely interesting, entertaining, and unpredictable. At just under four months, your M. Maurice is only just beginning to discover his gender and experiencing the interesting consequences of burgeoning hormones which make roosters so interesting, entertaining, and unpredictable.

    One thing most people with a new cockerel aren't aware of is how much their own behavior affects their adolescent roo. Understanding how those hormones can sometimes produce behaviors changes and even personality changes is helpful in raising a polite and well adjusted rooster.

    The hormones cause a young cockerel to begin to experience their world differently. They become aware of the hens with a new interest. At the same time, they are viewing the rest of their world in a new dichotomy of trust and danger, but they won't have the experience until months later to be able to discern who and what they need to protect the hens from. Sometimes, they get very confused if new people suddenly appear, or their keeper engages in suddenly new behavior around him. This is when a formerly docile and friendly cockerel surprises everyone by being a jerk and a menace.

    My advice is to be very consistent when you're around a young cockerel learning his new role in the flock. Keep his world as predictable and calm as possible. Limit visitors, especially small children over the next several months. Try not to engage in any sudden or threatening actions when near him. And most important, leave him alone to find his own way in relation to his flock except to guide him away from unacceptable behavior with consistent discipline. (Not punishment!)

    Your relationship to your young developing roo should be one of dominance, yet you don't want to be interfering so much that you confuse and frustrate him. For example, you will try to ignore his clumsy, experimental attempts to mate, but you will discipline him if he tries to threaten you. You will expect him to move out of your way instead of you trying to dodge him. If he suddenly starts to come toward you with the typical rooster "dance", take that as a warning that he's beginning to get confused about his relationship with you. Don't turn your back on him; be aware of where he is at all times. If he does come up behind you and flings himself at you, you need to immobilize him until he calms down. That's about the only kind of discipline that will be necessary.

    Last of all, be sympathetic in your understanding of how difficult it's going to be for M. Maurice over the next several months as he adjusts to all those crazy hormones that have changed how his world looks. Be confident you'll both survive until he's a grown-up at around one year.
  5. Velisabeth

    Velisabeth In the Brooder

    Sep 10, 2018
    I feel your pain! I had beautiful Becky, now a Beckham Bec for short. Hes beginning to crow at 6:45/7:00 and its getting louder and louder. Also a Black Copper Maran, sweet as can be. I hold him and scratch his neck every day in hopes of keeping him sweet. I just ordered a no crow collar because once daylight savings rolls around his 645 crowing will become 545 crowing and I can tell you none of my neighbors will appreciate that. Hopefully the no crow will limit his volume so he can stay. I want to say Beck is 5 or 6 months, not sure because he was gifted to us. I will keep my hopes up for you and continue to let you know how Bec is doing.
    chuckachucka likes this.
  6. IamRainey

    IamRainey Songster

    OOPS! I totally forgot about DST!!!

    I'd love to hear how your no crow collar works because I suspect we'll need to do something to be able to keep him.

    He's simply too gorgeous to have to re-home. And, besides, who will take a rooster?

    Actually, if I absolutely have to re-home him, my husband's boss got interested when we first got our chickens. He now has a coop and flock of his own at his country home on several acres so there's a good chance he'd take M. Maurice. ...but I'm hoping we'll be able to keep him.
  7. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler!

    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop
    Most important!!
    Excellent post^^^

    @azygous, are you a 'rooster cuddler'?
  8. azygous

    azygous Free Ranging

    Dec 11, 2009
    Colorado Rockies
    No, I am not a rooster cuddler. I handle them when necessary, and the rest of the time, I trust them to do their jobs and they respect me and allow me to do mine.

    My two roos are father and son. The older one has never enjoyed being held. The younger one barely tolerates it. Part of the two-way respect is to refrain from forcing them to do something they object to. If I were to force my roosters to accept cuddling, I would be cutting into their "images" with the flock since it would be a display of dominance that neither roo has done anything to deserve.

    I have an important role in my flock, but it's a completely different role from the roosters.
    Ms Biddy, KikiLeigh02, Aceoky and 8 others like this.
  9. Velisabeth

    Velisabeth In the Brooder

    Sep 10, 2018
    I have called around to people looking for roosters because our neighborhood is not zoned for them. Our city is pretty lenient as long as no neighbors complain they wont come out. I want to keep my boy and will if I can, but because of Newcastles breakout in our area no one is taking any birds of any kind. I think I am going to have to bring in the Roo tonight in a box or grab him out of the coop before sunrise tomorrow since its Saturday. I dont want to be that neighbor.
  10. MissChick@dee

    MissChick@dee Crowing

    Aug 18, 2017
    Caliente Nevada
    Here is what I have learned about Roosters.
    Don’t cuddle him! Yes they are super friendly while young. More so than hens.
    It will bite you in the wass’ When his urges to fight or fluck comes into play. Because he’ll try both with you.
    Young roosters when they hit puberty IMO are dangerous. They are not nice to the hens they TAKE what they want. They will injure your hens. Someone called them rapist but you get the idea.
    Now with that being said. If you get them past that stage and they have the ability or genes to be a gentleman’s Roo then by all means God bless. Me I don’t keep Roo’s
    I don’t want babies. I don’t want ripped up hens. Best wishes
    LABElle1225 likes this.

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