Young tom can't figure out how to do his thing

Discussion in 'Turkeys' started by WalnutHill, Mar 23, 2015.

  1. WalnutHill

    WalnutHill Overrun With Chickens Premium Member

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    My Narragansett tom is the best of the best of the best of three generations I've raised. He is a beautiful bird, docile with humans, about 22 pounds at 11 months He's been strutting for months and was the alpha jake of last year's brood. I sold off his parents as a breeding pair late in the season after they produced dozens of fertile eggs.

    One of the Narragansett hens is finally squatting for him, after months of him chasing her around and watching her flap up to the high roosts to get away. But now that he has the opportunity, he doesn't seem to have the inherent knowledge of what to do next. He will strut up to her, grab her head, and pinch and shake until she cries. If she can, she will get away and go roost.

    He isn't mounting or treading.

    This is the first time I've had a tom that doesn't seem to know what he is supposed to do. Is this relatively common among young toms and is there a way to encourage better behavior by separating him from his hens? I thought about making a falconer's hood, or covering her heat with Blu-Kote or something else nasty, but figured I'd check here.

    My other pair hasn't started yet either, both are shy of one year and she's not yet looking for attention.
     
    Last edited: Mar 23, 2015
  2. ivan3

    ivan3 spurredon Premium Member

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    You might have to "direct" the fellow to the right end of the hen. Give this some time, it is early in the season. If the hen is being injured then, by all means, separate out and only put them together when you are there to supervise/assist. Having had a jake attempt to mount the head of a hen :rolleyes: I can identify with these difficulties (he finally figured it out after ten, or so, attempts).
     
  3. WalnutHill

    WalnutHill Overrun With Chickens Premium Member

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    Since the hens are young too, and were getting traumatized, I swapped pens. I put the "beta" young tom in with them and he knew exactly what to do and did it nicely, not a single head peck. The girls were happy to get away afterward, but I think it will be a while before they settle down. Meanwhile "Dorian" has a BBB hen to show off to, and she can beat the snot out of him if she's so inclined as she's a few inches taller and a lot heavier than him.
     

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