Two roos scary fighting (a new behaviour)


6 Years
Feb 25, 2017
New Mexico
The new sex links (6 hens) have been living in the coop with the Silkies (6 hends, two roos) (but not the run) with only some rabbit fencing separating them. This has worked beautifully so this morning we took away the fence and introduced the newbies to the run. Absolutely not a peep out of anyone. BUT...

Tonight, my two Silkie roos are fighting like mad. It's so bad, I've put everyone else into the coop and closed the door so there is no collateral damage. They've never gone at it like this and, frankly, it's terrifying. Feathers all poofed around necks and a creepy-silent battle. Do I let them do their thing or separate them or what??

Any words of wisdom would be much appreciated, I'm just sick with worry.

EDIT: While I was typing this, the husband let one of the roos in the coop and locked the other out. I've taken that one and put him in quarantine. Unable to look at Pete, the brown one, but Moe (all white) is covered in blood. Going to bathe him tomorrow and tend to wounds and isolate Pete as well.

What happens next? I have no idea what to do.
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I have always let mine fight it out. I have never had any casualties, but they can beat each other up pretty bad sometimes. Just my bantams will go at it occasionally, never my large breed roosters.

I have broken them up on occasion, and they often go at it the next day, and the next, until someone wins and someone loses.

It depends how you feel about it all. If you separate them it could turn into a permanent situation. As long as the loser can get away you will be okay. If your set up is small you may have troubles, and may need to figure something out like swapping them out, or having two pens.

I never doctor them up and they always look miserable, but heal up fine. Usually it's mostly comb damage.
Sounds like the fight went to far and theytook it to the death level.Seperation is good for now.Tommorow put them back together an maybe it wont be so bad.

Some rooster cannot live together,some are much too aggressive.
Adding new birds changes the pecking order and the whole flock dynamic.
The males are likely fighting over the new females.
The older females may also be tussling over pecking order status with new additions which may further be upsetting the males.

How long were they separated and how old are the new females?

It's all about territory and resources(space/food/water).
Existing birds will almost always attack new ones to defend their resources.
Understanding chicken behaviors is essential to integrating new birds into your flock.

Confine new birds within sight but physically segregated from older/existing birds for several weeks, so they can see and get used to each other but not physically interact.

In adjacent runs, spread scratch grains along the dividing mesh, best if mesh is just big enough for birds to stick their head thru, so they get used to eating together.

The more space, the better.
Birds will peck to establish dominance, the pecked bird needs space to get away. As long as there's no copious blood drawn and/or new bird is not trapped/pinned down and beaten unmercilessly, let them work it out. Every time you interfere or remove new birds, they'll have to start the pecking order thing all over again.

Multiple feed/water stations. Dominance issues are most often carried out over sustenance, more stations lessens the frequency of that issue.

Places for the new birds to hide 'out of line of sight'(but not a dead end trap) and/or up and away from any bully birds. Roosts, pallets or boards leaned up against walls or up on concrete blocks, old chairs tables, branches, logs, stumps out in the run can really help. Lots of diversion and places to 'hide' instead of bare wide open run.

Read up on integration..... BYC advanced search>titles only>integration
This is good place to start reading, tho some info is outdated IMO:

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