Urban farming with a rooster in city limits


In the Brooder
10 Years
Jan 12, 2010
Oakland, CA
So my "rather large" barred-rock "pullet" has been crowing in the morning for the last week and a half, and now he's mounting my hens. I was in denial the first couple days, but i am now 99.9% convinced i've got a cockerel on my hands. I am not allowed to keep a rooster here in oakland, and I'm quite sure my neighbors are going to start complaining.

So there is the obvious, eat him for dinner solution to the problem, but i'm wondering if there is a way i could keep him around, and if there are any known tricks for how to do this. Can you have the cockedoodler removed, and how expensive is it? Or what about cooping him up in an enclosed & insulated box at night under the house, for the noise, and letting him out to pasture after 9:00 or so? Has anyone done this successfully in oakland, or in town limits?

The 4:30 crowing is incredibly annoying, if only to me and my housemates, and I have no interest in pushing my limits with neighbors, what with all the unpermitted construction i'm doing. But if i could resolve that somehow, he's seems to be pretty good-natured and friendly, as far as roosters go, and i would love to mate him with my hens, as well as lend him out for others to do the same. It's hard to find a rooster for hire in these parts.



10 Years
Sep 9, 2009
Olympia, WA
There is not much you can do. I did read one thread some time back where they built a heavily insulated 2'x4' night coop for their roo inside the garage. He still crowed some during the day, but it muffled the early morning/middle of the night noise enough to keep the neighbors happy. I've also seen where people have tried rooster boxes--just big enough for the roo and quite short so he is unable to stretch his neck out to crow properly. Those seem unkind though, and from what I've read not very effective anyway.

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10 Years
Mar 25, 2009
I'll second that roo-boxes don't work -- had mine in a similar situation temporarily due to a windstorm. He had absolutely no difficulty crowning from any position you care to name.

I think the only way to keep a roo from being heard is to encase him in concrete.

Which seems somewhat extreme.

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