young cockerals fighting

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by okdfarms, May 9, 2011.

  1. okdfarms

    okdfarms Out Of The Brooder

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    have questions about my young cockerals fighting. if this isn't the correct board, please direct me.
    today, i went out to check the coop, food, dishes. i had two young cocks going at it pretty good. one, a white orp. the other one, was sold to me as a delaware egg - but he is COMPLETLY white, not a spec of black anywhere. i hatched out all of the birds in this pen from bought eggs. they are about 8 weeks old.
    well the 'del' was beating the orp, to the point of bloodied combs. they are in a pen with some 'mixed' hens - 12 weeks old, and 'dels' from the same clutch. a total of 13 birds in a pen 8 x 10. plenty of roosting space, food and water.
    so my questions:
    should i separate cockerals/pullets earlier then 8 weeks.
    -do i need more space
    -do i just have a rogue cockeral that needs to be put in a pot??
    thanks for your help.
     
  2. McGoo

    McGoo Chillin' With My Peeps

    Could be a nasty cockerel - but which one is the culprit? I'm just bumping you for other opinions, but personally when I've found them fighting and drawing blood - that's it, they're history.
     
  3. NYREDS

    NYREDS Overrun With Chickens

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    They are trying to establish dominance. Perfectly natural.
     
  4. sourland

    sourland Broody Magician Premium Member

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    Quote:X 2 Normal rooster behavior. Each wants dominance so as to assure that he gets to breed the hens and pass on his dna.
     
  5. Barrdwing

    Barrdwing Chillin' With My Peeps

    The biggest question will be, will they figure out pretty quickly who is the dominant bird, and let the matter go? Or will they keep on sniping at one another? Also, I have had it happen where the loser gets thrown out of the flock by the dominant roo; the loser then spends his time trying to ambush hens so that he can breed them. Meanwhile the dominant roo comes galloping over and tries to knock the subordinate off the hen. It's rough on the hens, and they tend to end up with gashes on their sides from being spurred.

    Currently we have two roos in with twenty-four hens, and things are going OK: the subordinate has a few hens that prefer him, and the dominant is willing to not be a constant jerk (he chases the subordinate, but they don't fight). However, I had to re-home a beautiful Polish roo because he had been outcast and was giving the hens a hard time. I've also had it happen where two roos were too closely matched, or one of them had the physical advantage but the other had more fight in him. In either case, the fighting never really stops, so I have to separate them, and split the flock. You would not believe how many times I have subdivided our flock just to avoid re-homing roos!

    Just keep an eye on things for now, but it wouldn't be a bad idea to build a "rooster jail" just in case you do have to separate them. If you don't need it for a roo, you can use it later for a nursery! [​IMG]
     

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