Want only one roo, but want to make it count

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by vortec, Jan 31, 2009.

  1. vortec

    vortec Songster

    Jan 29, 2009
    Martin County, NC
    I couldn't figure out where this thread should go so I figured this section would work

    I am buying six layers in the near future from either mcmurray or ideal and I have a pretty good idea of what they will be:

    Barred rock
    Buff Orp
    NH Red

    Maybe another one of the above or another but the hens are easy...

    But the roo is what I want help on. I know as a fact of life that some roos are more agressive then others and some are better around people, or less territorial then others, so from everybodys experiences, what is a good roo for a first timer.

    I saw a pic of a roo on the ideal site that looks GREAT! The Iowa Blue. Anybody have any experience with it or know any more info on it. I want to know if the hens are good winter layers too as I live where it is cold( no this is not for my decesion on the roo, but it might be my sixth hen )

    PS: I want it for possible breeding with the breeds above so keep this in mind

    Any info of any kind will be appreciated and thanks!

  2. asher

    asher Chicken Enabler Extraordinaire

    Jan 26, 2007
    Mountains of NC
    I have never met a nice RIR roo. Never. I've met quite a few, but they were all nasty/mean.

    I'm sure some exist, but I wouldn't get one for myself simply because of how many I have encountered that just had such bad dispositions.

    The Jersey Giants I've dealt with have been very sweet, gentle giants.

    That's the only experience I have with the ones that you noted.
  3. Foxhound lady

    Foxhound lady Songster

    Jul 9, 2008
    TX baby!
    The only roos we kept on purpose was a OEGB and a Silkie.

    I've heard a lot of nice things about BR and Australop roos if that helps
  4. max13077

    max13077 Songster

    My Barred Rock Roo "Rocky" tries to be tough. However he can't ever say no if you pick him up and give him a scratch under the chin. He's very good with the girls, very attentive. If he hears one of them cackle he sprints over to see what's going on. But not mean at all.


  5. lauralou

    lauralou Songster

    Dec 10, 2007
    Central Virginia
    Getting a roo is a big decision, and keep in mind that you may get one whether you order one or not. Hatchery sexing is 90% accurate. But let's pretend that you will get lucky and get exactly what you ordered. I did, so it can happen.

    Looking at the list of breeds that you are ordering, I would immediately cross RIR off of my list of possible roos. As previously mentioned, they have a bad rep for aggression.

    Barred rock roos have a much better rep. But all of their offspring will be barred, to some extent, with some other colors possibly coming through. It's a matter of taste, but barred crossbreds don't appeal to me.

    Buff Orps are the nicest birds! I just love mine! The only problem with them is that they tend to be broody. So I would fear that a buff orp roo would impart the evil broody gene to all of his offspring. Again, that's just me. I suffer from a plague of broody hens. One broody hen is a valuable addition to the flock. A half a dozen broody hens are a terrible pain in the butt.

    I don't know a thing about NH Reds. Or Australorps either. But I think the Australorp roos are drop dead gorgeous. I imagine that a very high percentage of the offspring of an Australorp roo would be black, no matter what you bred him to.

    The idea of the Iowa Blue is an interesting one. I think they are kinda rare. If the picture you saw appeals to you, you should check the breed out. Have you been to Feathersite.com? There is great info there.

    So, long story short, if I were you, I'd go with the Australorp or the Iowa Blue. With at least one Iowa blue hen to go with him.

    Whatever breed of roo you decide to get, good luck with him!
  6. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

    Apr 20, 2007
    Ontario, Canada
    If you really care about the roo's temperament, you might be best off deliberately ordering 2-4 of them so you have something to choose among. The problem is that temperament varies a lot among individuals within a breed, so if you are only planning on getting *one* roo it is of real limited use to say 'oh, such and such breed often has nice roosters while such and such other breed are often aggressive'. You know?

    Good luck, have fun,

  7. columbiacritter

    columbiacritter Songster

    Jun 7, 2008
    Scappoose Oregon
    Remember, the tempermant of your roo when he's just a handful of feathers won't be what he ends up behaving like when his hormones kick in.

    My cochin roo was a very loving chick always rushing up for snacks out of my hand. When he got feathered he was a bouncy little fun thing, then all the sudden he became roo-zilla and I have to keep a sharp eye out for him.

    He's good with the hens and doesn't attack ALL the time, but he's a definite hassle to deal with.
  8. clifonti

    clifonti In the Brooder

    Jul 15, 2008
    I received a Buff Orpington roo from McMurray in error. I enjoyed him tremendously, that is, until the little guy turned hormonal. He would attack everyone but me and on occasion he would even charge the hand that fed him. Anyway, I would have kept him because he did alert the hens to danger but it meant I could never go out of town because no one else could care for him. I even had to warn my UPS delivery man and the mail man because I didn't want them to get ambushed. But my biggest fear were the neighborhood kids. I just couldn't see getting sued over the rooster.

    So last week I re-homed him. I suffered from separation anxiety for a few days but I'm pretty much over that now. Now I am waiting for my hens back feathers to grow back in because of his overly eager attentions.

    I feel I have to caution you before you get one just so you know what you might be getting into. They're cute, friendly and loads of fun when their little and you'll probably get attached. I've heard some say that their roos are fine. I would surely like to have a roo but would go into it with my eyes open this time. Good luck whatever you decide to do!
  9. jjparke

    jjparke Songster

    Apr 20, 2008
    My barred rock roo is pretty good you just can't turn your back on him. I've only heard bad things about RIR roos. Roo's are pretty fun all around though.
  10. gritsar

    gritsar Cows, Chooks & Impys - OH MY!

    Nov 9, 2007
    SW Arkansas
    I'm just giving my opinion here, so keep that in mind, 'k?
    I started out with two brahma roos, a breed known to be docile. The roo that I babied all the time gave me trouble once the hormonal teenage stage. I was able to break him of his bad habits, but still.
    My other roo I never babied. I provided him with food, water, and shelter; but not much handling beyond regular health checks. He has grown into the most wonderful of roos. He's good around people (though just a little afraid of humans) and excellent with his hens.
    It could be just an individual difference, but I take to be more than just a coincidence.
    If I ever have the need for another roo, I will handle him the way I handled roo #2.
    Last edited: Jan 31, 2009

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