Let’s take a Meyer Moment to talk about your aggressive rooster. Roosters were born to protect your flock. They are fearless when it comes to predators, but this can be intimidating to us humans. Getting flogged in the back of the legs while tending to your flock, takes the fun out of chicken keeping and can cause serious harm. So how do you handle an aggressive rooster and can they be tamed?
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Hey everyone! Welcome back to The Coop with Meyer Hatchery – where we talk all things poultry in hopes of inspiring crazy chicken keepers and educating future flock owners. Each week we like to take a Meyer Moment to cover relevant happenings.
Let’s take a Meyer Moment to talk about your aggressive rooster.
Roosters were born to protect your flock. They are fearless when it comes to predators, but this can be intimidating to us humans. Getting flogged in the back of the legs while tending to your flock, takes the fun out of chicken keeping and can cause serious harm. So how do you handle an aggressive rooster and can they be tamed?
First, know that correcting an aggressive rooster takes time and repetition. Their behavior will not be cured overnight. It’s suggested that if roosters are to be kept as a pet in your backyard flock, to handle them at a young age. This includes picking them up, holding them close for short periods of time, and providing treats.
Most often, roosters can be calm as chicks but signs of aggression may start forming as they reach maturity. If they are staring at you with their head lowered, chasing you across the lawn, aggressively pecking at your hands and feet, or using their spurs, it’s time to take action.
For roosters with mild signs, be sure you’re not making sudden movements or walking straight towards them. This signals to them that you’re looking for a fight. Move slowly, and if challenged, stare back at him while taking one step directly, into his space. This will help establish your dominance. Continue to look at him until he looks away from you, goes back to foraging, or leaves the area completely.
When working with aggressive roosters, make sure you’re well dressed in long pants, boots, and an object to keep between you and him. It’s important to not show fear, stand your ground, and make him move away first.
If your rooster’s bad behavior continues, try feeding him treats. When he approaches you, gently press your hand down on his back. Hold him down for short periods as you continue to provide treats, and remember to stand up slowly. In theory, this is the same maneuver he uses on hens to show his dominance.
If your rooster is too quick to hold down, try picking him up with his wings tucked under your arm. Carry him close to your body for 10-15 minute stretches. This again establishes your dominance but will take some repetition.
Lastly, if these tips don’t correct your rooster’s behavior, you may need to consider culling the bird or rehoming him. Once the behavior to protect his flock at all costs is established, it can be hard to break.
We hope these tips help you, in taming your aggressive rooster while showing him who’s boss of the backyard. And that’s your weekly moment with Meyer.
Enjoy the rest of your week and as always, thank you for listening to The Coop!
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Kendra + Jeff
From Meyer Hatchery
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