When can new chicks be put into the coop with adult rooster?

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by teachermommy, Oct 18, 2009.

  1. teachermommy

    teachermommy New Egg

    Oct 10, 2008
    We have a rooster that my daughter brought home from school. We bought three chicks online. We are told they are all female. We have them in a rabbit cage in the garage. When can we let the new chicks in with him? There are no hens with him at this time. He is lonesome.[​IMG]
    Last edited: Oct 18, 2009
  2. Opa

    Opa Opa-wan Chickenobi

    May 11, 2008
    Howell Michigan
    I wouldn't put them together until they are very close to the same size he is.
  3. 007Dawn

    007Dawn Out Of Coop

    Apr 29, 2009
    I agree when they are the same size if not they will be pecked to death.
  4. ijon1

    ijon1 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 26, 2009
    gaines, michigan
    Hi Opa How are you doing in this cold weather?
  5. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner True BYC Addict

    Feb 2, 2009
    Northwest Arkansas
    You can try at any time, but there are risks associated with any time.

    If you put them with him before they are close to sexually mature, he will see them as small chickens, not female, and may harm them. No different from putting chicks in with hens. This is probably your highest risk age. Some people have success at this age, especially if the chicks have a place to escape to that the adult cannot get to them, but I would not do it. He could kill them pretty quickly.

    Once he sees them as female and not chicks, he will probably try to mate with them. This could be earlier, but 16 weeks is probably a good age. If the pullets are not mature enough to accept his advances, they will fight and try to escape him. If they have plenty of room, they can probably get away from him, but you will see him often chasing them and think he is an awful rooster. If they do not have room to get away, he will force his way with them, and you will think what an awful rooster. He may actually harm them if they are too young to accept his advances. A lot of roosters wind up in the crock pot under these circumstances when all they are doing is following their instincts and the pullets are not old enough to have the right instincts.

    Once the pullets are mature enough to accept his advances, which is essentially when they are laying, he will mate with them but it will probably be pretty nonviolent. Since the pullets are not used to having a rooster around, they may resist the first time or two and he will force his way, but the pullets usually catch on pretty quickly and it is relatively peaceful.

    It is possible you have a brute for a rooster and he does deserve the crock pot. But once the rooster gets out of the teenage phase and the pullets are old enough to do what nature intended them to do, it normally goes OK.

    If I had sufficient room for the pullets to resist his advances, I would try when they reach a pretty mature size. If space were limited, I would wait until they start laying. You can house them next to him, but separated by wire so he cannot actually ger to them.
  6. luvmychks51

    luvmychks51 Out Of The Brooder

    Oct 10, 2009
    Brooksville, FL
    chillin is right. he will peck them to death. wait until they are older and all about the same size.

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