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kait18 07-23-2012 06:24 PM

ROOSTERS 101 ? give me the advice :)
well seems i was right again :/ kinda wish i wasn't though

out of the 12 new chicks we bought this year 2 are roosters. 6 are red sex links and the other 6 are plymouth rocks. the roosters are both plymouths.

1. should i be caging them?
2. will they hurt the hens?
3. i will now keep the children away from the chickens!!!
4. do they get feed differently then the hens
5. how do i make sure that i am eating a regualr egg and not a chick filled egg? because now i am actually starting to get sickened of thinking of that whole ordeal.. dont ask why cause i dont know.
6. give me all the advice you can on how to manage roosters!! because i do not want an "EARL" :)

thanks in advance

Celeste 07-23-2012 07:48 PM

I have two roosters in with my hens. They are also plymouth rocks. They have not given me any trouble so far. They are one year old. I keep them all in the pen together with the hens. Just so the eggs are collected daily, it does not make any difference whether they are fertilized or not. The embryos are single celled and you can't see them at all if they are not incubated. They eat layer pellets with the hens. My plymouth rock hens are actually more aggressive than the roosters so far. They will peck your shoes if you don't feed them treats fast enough and if you try to get their eggs before they are through being entertained by the laying process, they will pinch the devil out of your finger. The plymouth rocks are very pretty roosters.

Chevaux 07-23-2012 08:10 PM

Celeste has covered the basics quite nicely.

Dead Rabbit 07-23-2012 08:39 PM

with 12 pullets be prepared for 10 plus eggs per day. 7 days a wk. thats alot of eggs.
you dont need a rooster at all. your hens will lay well with out him. you'd be better off w/o one. if your not breeding, then they are just an extra mouth to feed, and they are noisy. two roosters willl be problems. possible fighting, and if nothing else there is a pecking order, the dominiant one will generally make life miserable for the lower one. esp. if penned up. large breed roosters do have a tendency to become aggressive to people, esp. children. and if you dont keep the spurs cut, they can hurt you.

with all that said. if you keep one rooster, you will probably be ok. but i think someone should know worst case scenario.

NorthernMama 07-23-2012 09:34 PM

Agree with above posts. Why keep two roosters? I always kept one around because a big rooster will protect the hens from predators as best as he can. But two is not a good idea.

As for the kids, teach them how to protect themselves from the roosters. Don't wear red (honestly, for true, I have personal experience). Unless the kids are so young that they are not able to run and walk well, remember that the rooster is only 5 to 20 lbs (and that's a BIG one). If the kid has twice the weight they can kick the rooster to kingdom come. But they have to learn the signs and declare their space before the rooster tries to declare his! If the kids collect the eggs, the first thing they should do on entering the pen is chase the rooster. Anywhere, just chase it. Not running around like idiots, just making him move. He'll get the idea that his roost is only his when the people aren't around.

Celeste 07-23-2012 09:34 PM

I bought roosters intentionally because they are pretty. Silly I guess, but I did.
I give away tons of eggs. Right after we bought the eggs, my husband and I found out that we had cholesterol problems. Lol. We still eat them, but not every day. We get 5 - 6 eggs a day. The roosters don't fight, but they do have a pecking order. Anyway, my point is that I like the roosters because they crow and are pretty and the entire project is just one more hobby to me.

Dead Rabbit 07-23-2012 09:50 PM

i have a welsummer rooster with my hens. ive had chickens all my life. and they are just one of those things i will always have. i love um. ive bred different types through the yrs. and ive had hundreds of american game fowl roosters at one time.
for layer flocks such as mentioned above, i think one rooster is fine just for the excuse of having one. as for protection, they are really only good for alerting the yard if their is an aerial attack such as hawks. which is a good thing, any mammelian type predators the rooster doesnt stand a chance. but unless you just want them to look at they really arent worth their feed costs.
i have sexlink type hens. they will outlay most anything. ive hard the barred rocks before. beautiful hens. but smaller eggs and less of them than the sexlink. plus the BR hens consume more feed than the sexlinks. its hard to beat something at their own game.
chickens is one of my hobbies too. i do sell eggs. it helps with the feed costs. even though you generally never break even. esp. if you consider in coop, fence, yard costs.

Dead Rabbit 07-23-2012 09:57 PM

a rooster can definetly hurt you. their spurs can and will penetrate heavy leather work boots. i have scars from rooster attacks. i generally wouldnt keep a mean rooster except for a few that were worth hundreds of dollars. a layer type isnt worth more than a few bucks so when they turn mean the best route is to cull them. teaching them to fear you isnt a good idea. at worse they will sneak you from behind. chasing a rooster isnt good either, it causes stress in the yard. hens will be wilder, and not lay as well. best route is calm slow moving, scaring hens will cause a rooster attack. raising roosters calmly and not spoiling them with treats is best route. regardless what the current fad is, roosters arent pets.............they will expect them and attack when you dont treat them.
most common breeds for roosters to turn aggressive is rhode island reds and new hampshire reds.

Celeste 07-23-2012 10:01 PM

If mine turn mean, then they will have to go. I am not totally dedicated to this chicken keeping thing. If I get tired of them, I will either give them away or take them to the small livestock sell the next town over.

kait18 07-23-2012 10:05 PM

trust me getting two roosters was not something we wanted we didnt even want one!!!

we are also not breeding. the chickens we have now were bought from a store our local country store where farmers dropped off the babies in heaps and mounds to sell...

as for the eggs, we have a big family :P
the 12 i mentioned before are only about 4 months old then we have 2 older hens about 2 years old that are light sussex that are absolutely the two sweetest chickens. they come running to you to be held. love those ladies. as of now only get 2 eggs a day and in a few months hopefully about 10 a day.

i am just nervous with rooster behavior after reading someones post about there rooster becoming an earl=soon to be dead rooster. so i would like to avoid as much risks as possible. :P

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