Will My Free-Ranging Hens Be OK Without a Rooster?


In the Brooder
7 Years
Oct 2, 2012
I have nine hens, and until this afternoon, I had one rooster - Mr. Bossypants. He wasn't very chivalrous - he would bowl the girls out of the way for food and treats.

We had to decide to have him culled, because he attacked me not once, but three times. Once, he drew blood. It got to the point that I couldn't go ANYWHERE near the coop when he was around, without fear of getting chicken mauled. I have small children, so we decided that the rooster had to go.

I raised my first rooster from a chick, and he was just fine with me - and took good care of his girls. But he eventually lost his life protecting them. Mr. Bossypants was given to me a few weeks ago, so we don't have that same "bond". So, he was picked up tonight by a neighbor who will bring him back on Saturday... for dinner.

Now, I'm a bit concerned about my hens roaming the property without a roo. He did a good job of looking out for them, herding them back to the coop at night, etc. He was really diligent about making sure everyone was where they were supposed to be.

Now, I'm concerned about what will happen to my hens now that they have no protector. =\ I have some chicks in the brooder, and am hoping for a decent rooster or two out of that batch, that I can raise myself.

So, my question is this - are hens really helpless without a rooster to guard them? Will they all come back to the coop before dark without being nagged?

I'm feeling some regret about having this rooster killed. But I couldn't risk him attacking one of the kids one day.


In the Brooder
7 Years
Jan 6, 2013
Alpha Centauri
Our birds have always been fine without a roo. They will probably come back to the coop at night. Our flock went through a stage when they would all sleep on the kid's swing set.

On second thought, we've never had a roo. PeanutButter has taken on the role of rooster for our flock, even crowing occasionally.

If Mr. Bossy was as annoying as you say, your girls can do without him anyway. They aren't helpless at all.
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