Monday, August 8, 2016

Too Many Roos

3 of our noise makers. Two Plymouth Barred Rocks and a Copper Maran

When we got our chicks earlier this Spring we had 28 initially all a week or less old.  At that point they're all cute and fuzzy and we had a mixed lot of young chickens from a small hobby farm that raised several types of specialty chickens as well as some mixed lots they referred to as "Olive Eggers".  With this mixture and straight run you take your chances on the sex of the group.

The little fuzz balls in the tub in the garage when we first got them

So cute

We lost one little one in the second week of having them, and managed to raise the rest to maturity. Of the remaining 27 we wound up with 10 roosters!!!  After finding separate pens for them where they wouldn't fight we had to deal with the noise contest they seemed to have going on.  There were these 3 noise makers in the pen that had served as our temporary chick pen next to our room.  They kept starting earlier and earlier until it made it clear we needed to deal with them.  The two Plymouth Barred Rock Roosters were the first to be culled.

These two were LOUD and competed with each other to constantly let everyone know they were around.

Then we had another 4 in our chicken tractor.  The Alpha Rooster who had truly ruled the roost for the longest time until he became too aggressive for our liking, moved in with 3 others in the chicken tractor the girls and I had to quickly put together.  The 4 bachelors got along as we moved them around the yard, but the two larger ones were really noisy.  So they along with the Copper Maran were next in the exit line.  I had looked at selling, but their fates would have been the same and I'd get very little for them.  I wanted to be sure that when they went it was as humanely as possible and the only way to assure that was to research it ourselves and then follow through. So one of the negatives of homesteading was to happen sooner than we originally thought, and so after processing these 5 we have them in the freezer for future meals.

The two larger roos in the tractor are the main culprits here.

Alpha Rooster

Copper Maran in foreground

Finally, we had two Polish roosters we had to separate and though the one in with the Polish hens was beautiful, he was very loud and enjoyed making his presence known continually, so I listed him on Farm and Homestead lists and sold him to a woman who has several specialty types of chickens and loves him for his beauty and sweet personality despite his vocal habits.

Our beautiful, but noisy Polish Rooster

He's a happy addition to his new home

So for now we have a remaining BLR Rooster who's sweet and quiet, and another Polish Rooster who's thrilled to be back with the hens and needs to regrow a few feathers he lost in altercations with the larger hens in the former pen he was in.

BLR Rooster with a couple of his girls

He's got pretty coloring and a sweet personality.  Doesn't seem interested in making a lot of noise

The other Polish Rooster who is now with the hens will look a whole lot better when his tail feathers come back in.

We have two remaining bachelor roosters in the chicken tractor who are content to busy themselves with clearing weeds and bugs as I move them around the yard.  We've added an adult Brahma Hen and two chicks, one Cochin and another Brahma.  So our current flock is at 24 total.  We've had our first few eggs in the last week and a half and are in the process of building another hoop coop so we can separate the Polish and Cochin in the hope of eventually breeding these and keeping their lines pure.

Brahma hen
The chicken tractor under the tree line as we have a lot of rain expected today

The Brahma and Cochin chicks

Our eggs supplied by our girls.
So that's it for now.  I'll do my next post on the new hoop coop and the harvest we've had so far this season.  We're keeping busy and enjoying a more peaceful homestead now that the number of roosters has been reduced.

This was the cloud set that showed up the day after our roosters departed.  I call it my "Rooster Rising Sunrise Scene".  Thought it was pretty and rather appropriate.

Rooster Rising Sunrise -  just have to use a bit of imagination.

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