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too many roosters

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by big m70726, Aug 17, 2011.

  1. big m70726

    big m70726 Out Of The Brooder

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    When I bought my chicks I bought the staight runs now that their older I have 14 10 hens and 4 roos . would like to keep 2 of the roos could I would 5 hens to a roos be ok? I have rhode islande red and demonneck plus some blacks ones IDK what kind they are the roos are kinda showin assgesion towards each other the demoneck and the black is the black is older but the demonneck is rty to breed.the 2 I want to keep eat together and I have had them since babies were bought together. so i'm thinkin if I get the other 2 out now maybe the 2 I want will be ok together .
     
  2. Judy

    Judy Moderator Staff Member

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    I would cut it down to one roo.

    They will probably challenge each other to be the dominant roo. It goes by their inherited traits more than that they were raised together. Some will fight viciously, and others will just chase, and give a peck now and then. But the other problem will be your hens. They will be overmated, you will probably see the hens' feathers torn up or pulled out. Also, hens stressed by over mating will not lay as many eggs.

    It may be you have one roo who will stay out of the other's way, so having two won't be as stressful on the hens, but then the lower rated roo may have a miserable life.

    You won't know how the dynamics will work out in your particular flock unless you try it, but these are common problems.
     
  3. Hangin Wit My Peeps

    Hangin Wit My Peeps AutumnBreezeChickens.com

    I agree with the above post...although I do have two roos with my flock of 10 hens and the roos get along fine SO FAR (they are a year old now) but the hens are slowing down on laying. I though it was that they found new places to lay (they are freerangers) but I now have them in a coop with a run and still VERY little eggs. Yesterday I got ONE egg out of 10 hens No where to hide the eggs so I know they are just not laying now. SO I am now considering getting rid of one of the roos [​IMG] For their sake.
     
  4. Judy

    Judy Moderator Staff Member

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    Quote:I have actually seen egg production increase within a week or so after I removed an extra roo or two.
     
  5. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Chicken Obsessed

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    Congratulations on your straight run ratio. That was nice.

    There is a ratio of ten hens to each rooster floating around this site as the magic ratio. There is nothing magic about it. That is the ratio that commercial breeders that use the pen style of breeding for hatching eggs use to ensure fertility. It has little to do with over mated hens or roosters fighting. There are reports on this forum of people having serious problems with barebacked hens with one rooster and over 20 hens. Breeders often keep one rooster in a breeding pen with one or two hens and don't have problems. The more roosters you have the more likely you are to have a problem, so it does have something to do with it, but the chickens personality has a lot more to do with it. I think how much space they have also has a very important part in detemining how they get along. Because the more roosters you have, the more likely you are to have problems, I recommend you keep the number of roosters to a minimum and still meet your goals.

    You will probably see some problems when they are adolsecents. The young roosters hormones run wild and they just can't seem to control them. They usually outgrow that phase, but it can get pretty rough for a while. And the adolescent pullets often don't cooperate either, so the adolescent roosters often resort to force. That teenage phase can be rough for chickens. Some roosters never outgrow their teenage years. Some hens never learn to cooperate. Some seem to mature pretty young. But it is usualy better if you can weather the storm of their teenage phase.

    If you know which two you want to keep, I'd take care of that now instead of waiting. When you remove chickens, you upset the pecking order and they need to sort that back out. With roosters, you also upset the flock dominance situation and that can lead to problems. I think it is better to get that taken care of as soon as possible.

    Roosters raised together often sort out flock dominance without you really seeing it happen, just like you don't see a lot of the pecking order getting sorted. Sometimes they fight to the death. Usually it is somewhere in between. Sometimes two roosters will get along great for a year or more, then decide they need to determine the flock dominance again. I can't tell you what will happen with yours. Each chicken has its own personality and each flock has its own dynanmics. With one rooster you are less likely to have problem, but there are no guarantees you will or will not have a problem with either one or two.

    I think your plan is reasonable, but I would watch for problems, especially as your flock matures. Good luck!
     
  6. BlackBrookPoultry

    BlackBrookPoultry Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I agree with the above post. I had 8 hens and 2 roosters and the roosters worked out the dominace issue and everything was fine. A lot depends on the breed and personality of your roosters.
     
  7. big m70726

    big m70726 Out Of The Brooder

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    Thanks so much to all great advice so nice to have such a great place to chat and learn from . melissa
     

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