How to deal with an aggressive rooster

by Denise
(Manningtree England)

Hi Cath,

I have a beautiful year old bantam rooster called Percy.

I love him to bits, but over the last couple of weeks he has started attacking me when I go out to the garden to do chores in the coop and run.

He also had a go at my little grandaughter, and marked her legs with his pecking.

How can I stop this behaviour, as I really don't want to get rid of him - he's fantastic with the hens.

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Percy is finding his feet!
by: Cath

- or rather, his spurs!

Hi there Denise,

He's exactly the age when a rooster's (UK cockerel's) hormones will start to kick in. As far as Percy is concerned, he's doing what a good rooster should - protecting his ladies from this two-legged person (and mini-two-legged person!) who comes into his domain every day and steals his potential children - what we see as our lovely eggy breakfast!

So he's doing what he should do. Unfortunately, though, that's having a bad effect on you and on your grand-daughter. That's particularly difficult since, as his spurs get bigger, they will be really quite dangerous weapons. One of my lovely roos gouged a large hole in my leg one day at exactly this age, having been the loveliest, friendliest rooster up until then.

There are a number of ways you can deal with this. A lot of people will say put him in the pot, or give him away.

My view is different. As I say, Percy is doing what he should do, so he really can't be blamed.

The best way I've found of dealing with an aggressive roo is so simple I don't know why it took me so long to think of it.

A hosepipe.

Have a read and see whether that helps.

I really do encourage anyone to use the "hosepipe method"! It just involves leaving the hose near the entrance to the run with the tap turned on. any time the roo makes a run at you, squirt some water in his direction.

Chickens aren't keen on water, and the roo will back off. If he runs again, he gets squirted again. He will soon learn. Mine learned so well that he would run a mile if he saw me so much as pick the hosepipe up...

It's simple, it doesn't hurt the bird and they understand very quickly what the "big spitting green snake" does if he gets upset!

I have an article all about why roosters are good to have, here. It includes my hosepipe story.

Hope that helps.

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