Thinking of getting a rooster! Advice?

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by Henriettamom919, Jun 15, 2019.

  1. Henriettamom919

    Henriettamom919 Crowing

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    I'd really like to get a rooster for several reasons:

    1) Chicken math!
    2) Protection
    3) Have increased our flock size
    4) Eventually chicks!

    Ideally he'd eventually be in charge of all seven. My hens are 11 months old and consist of 2 barred rocks and one Buff Orp. My pullets are about 10-12 weeks old and are 1 blue Andalusian, 1 EE, 1 RIR & 1 Ameraucana.

    My biggest concern is integrating him into my layer flock of three, initially. Am I better off getting a young roo and letting them accept him before his hormones kick in? Would an older roo come to accept my pullets once I integrate them or will I need a rooster just for them?

    Breed ideas? Or maybe just "No, Heather, don't do it! You're crazy!" :gig
     
  2. Mrs. K

    Mrs. K Crowing

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    If you can get your druthers, I would want a rooster that is as close to a year old as possible. By then, you can kind of see what kind of rooster he is going to be:fl. The rooster you want is one that has been raised in a multi-generational flock, and was so nice, they could not quite cull him.

    Thing is, having a rooster should also mean having a sharp knife. Roosters are a crapshoot, and a lot of them do not work out. If you have a good one, they are the most wonderful thing, if you have a rotten one they are a nightmare, and they can go from one to the other, in what seems like a blink of an eye. You need to be able to dispatch a violent, human aggressive rooster.

    Juvenile roosters tend to be brave and out going. People often mistake that for friendliness as in a puppy. They tend to think if they are nice to the darling, he will be nice back. But those birds have no respect for humans, and can become aggressive as they have no or little fear of humans. If you do get a young rooster, do not make a pet of it, and make sure it respects you enough, to stay about 5-6 feet away from you. Watch for sneaky behavior, such as always getting behind you, excessive crowing, or fluffing up or flapping his wings at you. All signs that he is thinking of taking you on.

    I would wait until your current pullets are close to laying. Adding a mature rooster, is the easiest single bird addition there is, you put him in, there is great excitement, a few skirmishes and they are all in love before morning. Although a mature rooster will mostly ignore pullets, until they start to redden up in the combs and wattles, a juvenile rooster will harass the pullets. A juvenile rooster will want to breed anything, and will tend to bully the pullets, as the older girls will not allow him to do anything.

    Adding a rooster really does change the flock dynamics, they no longer look to you, they look to him, and he will tend to stand between you and the girls. They seem to become a little more stand-offish.

    If you have children under the age of 6, I would not recommend you getting a rooster. Roosters have ruined the whole chicken experience for a lot of kids. Get down on your knees, and you will quickly see that a flying rooster will be at face level. And most people seriously underestimate how violent a rooster attack can be.

    There are many aspects to this hobby, and adding the rooster is a good step two. It does change things. Do measure your set up. Too small of a coop and run area can cause problems, and will multiply problems with a rooster. I think roosters need a bit more room.

    If you hatch, you need to consider the new roosters that you will be hatching, what will you do with them.

    Mrs K
     
  3. sealer39

    sealer39 Songster

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    If your chickens are for egg production, consider a rooster from a breed that produces well. Before you decide on a rooster, google cross breed results to see what your future chicks will be. Ie. Rhode Island Red Rooster x EE hen.
     
  4. Chickassan

    Chickassan Wattle Fondler

    Crazy girl :frow
    I'm not normally a breed thumper, but Faverolles, young Faverolles.
    You have a small flock, they aren't humping machines so you're good there.
    Aggression iv'e hatched quite a few and only one semi-bad, he was overly hormonal so not bad just double baggage and half brains.
    Protection, they won't fight a dang thing BUT they do sound a mean alarm and will lead the ladies away from trouble.
    Chicks, this is the best part they tend to care for the broods iv'e never had one rough up the babies.
    If you want to chance a rooster a young fella your hens could mold into a proper functional dude and you aren't experienced with roosters this is my recommendation.
     
    Last edited: Jun 15, 2019
  5. cheekychick3

    cheekychick3 Songster

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    Hi and you have had, the best advice from, Mrs K. But thought i would add this. lol
    Years ago when we had our farm, we also had our girls, free ranging with 3 cockerels.
    The boys, got on great together, as they all had their own groups of the girls. So they
    did not fight with each other. I think it was because we bred them, and they grew up
    together, also made a diffrence. Unless we got lucky. But ROCKY was a huge sussex
    boy, he was great with everyone on the farm, bar myself and Mother-in -law, when she
    visited. We done nothing to him, but if he saw me coming up the track, in the jeep, he
    would hide, anywhere. Then wait until we were in open space, and attack. I mean attack
    lol. We were both petrified of him. Many a time i had to run in our greenhouse, stables
    pigsty ect. Cause we knew if he could he would cause us damage. So many times i
    was locked in anywhere, and my family thought i was either still shopping, or mucking
    out ect. There was no way i would dare come out.lol As a few times he attacked me,
    and marked me. He would jump on my head, and even yank my hair. lol He was one
    crazy boy. But the joke and mainly the cheek of him, there was times, he would be
    be loving to us. Reason being our muck heap outside, always had lovely worms. All
    our chickens would cluck away, asking me to get the fork, and dig them worms. Of
    course i did everytime. lol But soon as Rocky filled his belly, he would give me his special look, as if he was telling me take cover. As i am coming for you, even after digging for
    them all. My Mother-in-law would always wear a skirt, and he would creep up behind her,
    and jump under her skirt, she be screaming. Wahhh He was a crazy cockerel, but all
    said and done, we loved him. Reading your question, brought it all home, my memories of him. Truth is he was always a gentleman to his girls, which mean"t a lot. So we kept
    him, (lucky boy) had him for years, and he passed with old age. bless. Like i said Mrs K
    has given you the best advice, just wanted to share my memories. lol Hope you do not mind. lol and also thanks for thinking of him. We had a few after him, but there was only one of Rocky. lol Good luck, on what you decide.:frow
    R.I.P. ROCKY,
     
  6. cheekychick3

    cheekychick3 Songster

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    Just noticed, you have had other replies, again brilliant advice. :frow
     
  7. Henriettamom919

    Henriettamom919 Crowing

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    This story has me cracking up! Thank you for sharing the adventures of Rocky the Rooster with me :gig

    You all, especially @Chickassan and @Mrs. K have given me a lot to think about. I'll be doing more research before making a decision.

    I was, naively, thinking of him as an addition that can watch out for my girls when I'm not around but it doesn't sound like it works that way; either he is the guardian or I am. I'm not opposed to that but my girls are my pets, too, and I'm not sure I'm willing to give up that relationship yet.

    Thank you all so much! :love
     
  8. Shadrach

    Shadrach Roosterist

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    This article may help you decide and work out how you will handle him once you've decided.
    @Mrs. K has covered a lot of the factors.
    I would go for a rooster over a year old and as Mrs. K mentions, one that has been brought up in a multi generational flock
    https://www.backyardchickens.com/articles/understanding-your-rooster.75056/
     
  9. Henriettamom919

    Henriettamom919 Crowing

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    Thank you @Shadrach . I've decided to do some more research and wait until my pullets are a little older. My youngest kidlet is now 13 and I've been caring for my terminally ill mother for 5 years; she passed this last October and I'm looking to go back to work over the summer. I'll try to plan for when I literally won't be here to look after them and try to enjoy my "pet" chickens a little longer while I have the option.

    I really appreciate all the honest input!
     
  10. Shadrach

    Shadrach Roosterist

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    I hope life shows a brighter side for you in the future.:hugs
     
    EggWalrus and Willowspirit like this.

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