Young rough rooster

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Kathyb2, Apr 27, 2016.

  1. Kathyb2

    Kathyb2 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have a 4 month old rooster (Bielefelder) sharing a coop with 5 pullets. 3 of the pullets are 4 months old and 2 are three months old. They are sharing a 30x30 run with a bantam (cochin) rooster and his 4 hens. The Bielefelder is 3x the size of the cochin. Until now, I have only ever had one rooster in each pen. I combined the two groups two weeks ago. There has been a little chasing but mostly they ignore each other. The young rooster is trying to mate with the pullets. He is grabbing the back of their heads but is not mounting them. He is usually standing in front of them when he does this. They scream and try to run. He eventually lets go of their head. I have not kept alot of roosters but I have kept some and I have never seen this before. It has been going on for almost a week. Could this have anything to do with sharing the run with another rooster. So far he is not people aggressive at all so I was hoping to keep him.
     
  2. sourland

    sourland Broody Magician Premium Member

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    He's just a young, dumb teenager not certain about how to do things, and the pullets at this point have no interest in mating. You might want to remove him from the pullets until they start laying.
     
  3. thebulg

    thebulg Chillin' With My Peeps

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    This EXACT thing happened to me this past month! We realized we had a second rooster in a flock with 5 hens. The older roo began attacking our hensexactly as you describe-ripping out their head feathers when they squatted, and not mating them. He eventually started running them off from food as well and overmated 2 hens. I fully believe he was trying to prove to the other roo that he owned the hens and the food and the whole yard.

    After 3 weeks of thinking the flock would shake itself out, instead we had 2 hens who were terrified and wouldn't show their faces in the yard, snuck to the nest box, and were laying all kinds of problem eggs.

    What you CAN do is separate a rooster or both from the flock of hens for a large chunk of the year. A few months at a time. It might put him back in his place, but if nothing else it relieves the hens of trauma. We opted to cull the older roo in favor of the younger one who is completely whipped by the hens. He's protective rather than possessive. I culled him at night, the next day the hens were all back together foraging, and we have heard choruses of happy egg songs.
     
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  4. azjustin

    azjustin Chillin' With My Peeps

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    +1

    Our "young and dumb" roosters would mount the hens, and then peck their heads until the hens were PO'd enough to kick the idiots off. That was several months ago, and now 99% of our eggs are fertile with no aggression towards the hens.

    We didn't have any feather loss or blood drawn, so no separation. But, I would monitor them closely and make sure nobody gets crazy. A proper ratio of hens too roos, along with plenty of SF per bird, will also curb a lot of behavioral issues. Also, not all roosters are good "roosters". Sometimes freezer camp is the best resolution.

    Good luck.
     
  5. azygous

    azygous Chicken Obsessed

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    I've had seven cockerels over the span of nine years, and the worst ones were just this last summer. It may be the breed, they were Cuckoo Marans, but these two were sex maniacs from very early on, driving the girls nuts.

    One was crowing and mounting his brooder mates at six weeks, and the other, at five months, would select his target then launch himself at her like a torpedo, landing square on her back like a WWW wrestler. Needless to say neither I nor the hen were impressed with this technique.

    Until these boys were re-homed, they spent their days outside the run doing perimeter guard duty, thus sparing the girls daily annoyance.
     

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