Young Roo.

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by lydiagirl99, Jan 1, 2017.

  1. lydiagirl99

    lydiagirl99 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    So, I kind of have an odd situation with my cockerel. So, I have a roo that is about to be 7 months old on the 20th. Old enough to be breeding, right ? Well, so far I have not noticed any breeding, in fact, he is at the bottom of the pecking order. He has shown no interest in caring for the girls at all. My old rooster used to find food and call the girls over to eat while this little guy just runs away with any food he gets, otherwise the girls will take it from him. He is now matching the size of my bigger girls and is even bigger than most. He's an excellent chicken, loves to be pet, very friendly, a giant goofball, but he's just not showing any rooster attributes yet. My main question is, will he ever start showing interest?

    Side note: For about 5 months of his life he grew up with an older sibling named Bruno who was also a Roo. They were best of buds, but as they grew, one of them had to be the boss and that was always Bruno. He always put penguin in his place, making him what I think is more submissive. Bruno unfortunately died about a month or so ago due to Mareks disease that has gotten into my flock. I'm afraid he won't grow out of his submissive ways and I need babies for the spring.

    Should I get a more experienced rooster and let him take care of the girls and hope Penguin stays as submissive as he is now ? Or wait it out in hopes he'll end up being a good Roo ?

    Here's the most recent picture of my baby.
    [​IMG]
     
  2. Pyxis

    Pyxis Dark Sider Premium Member

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    I think his hormones are probably just slow to kick in. Best to wait it out, especially if you have Marek's in your flock - if you get a new rooster that's not vaccinated he may become infected and die from the disease.

    Also, just to satisfy my curiosity, do you happen to have a recent picture of him taken in profile?
     
    Last edited: Jan 1, 2017
  3. lydiagirl99

    lydiagirl99 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Yes, I do agree with that. We actually got the Mareks in our flock from bringing in a new rooster. It has taken to many lives already but I think I finally got to a point where the rest of my flock is going to be okay. Oddly it affects the Roos the most.

    Do you know a lot about Mareks ? If so, I might have another question for you.
     
  4. Pork Pie Ken

    Pork Pie Ken Monkey Business Premium Member

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    Agreed. I'd expect to see obvious saddle feathers and more pointed hackle feathers at 6 months.

    I had a brown leghorn cockerel that did not do his "job" until he was 9 months old - drove me nuts! Having said that, he developed into the perfect gentleman and was a pleasure to have.
     
  5. Pyxis

    Pyxis Dark Sider Premium Member

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    Some, but I wouldn't say a lot. I can try to answer your question and if not I can point you to a fantastic article.

    Expanding on what CTKen said, the reason I'm asking for a profile shot is I'm kind of thinking this bird may not be a rooster - I'm not seeing some of the obvious rooster signs he should have by now. May just be really slow to develop though.
     
    Last edited: Jan 1, 2017
  6. bobbi-j

    bobbi-j Chicken Obsessed

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    If it is a young cockerel, he's still immature.(The hackle feathers look rooish to me, but to be sure, I'd suggest posting a good, profile picture of him on the "What Breed or Gender is This?" section of the forum) How old are the hens you have him with? If they are adult hens (over a year old), they may not have earned his place with them yet. They don't have a lot of tolerance for a young, inexperienced cockerel. This is not a bad thing. They will teach him some manners once his hormones kick in and all he can think about is breeding, breeding, breeding.
     
  7. lydiagirl99

    lydiagirl99 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I'm not exactly sure what a profile shot is, but I'll give more pictures. He has had me back and forth about him being a female or male for a long time. I hatched him from an egg, though so I know the exact day he was born so I know he is an older roo or possible hen, haha.

    If this picture is not good enough, I can take some tomorrow. This was taken about 2-3 weeks ago.
    [​IMG]
     
  8. Pork Pie Ken

    Pork Pie Ken Monkey Business Premium Member

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    Profile shot is a "side-on" shot. A side-on shot (and close up) should reveal the nature of the hackle feathers (around the neck - the bronze / orange feathers in this case) and the saddle feathers (one's that point downwards, towards the base of the tail)
     
  9. lydiagirl99

    lydiagirl99 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Yes. My adult hens are anywhere from 2-5 years old. I have a 4 month old pullet but she's a loner, anyway. She doesn't mind him. I figured the hens wouldn't really tolerate him but he doesn't seem to be trying, either. He is almost 7 months old.
     
  10. Pork Pie Ken

    Pork Pie Ken Monkey Business Premium Member

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    He could just be a slow developer, as suggested. As I mention, by cockerel took an eternity (to me, at least) exhibit the right behaviours that my flock of 18 months old hens appreciated.
     

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