Big chook becomes a rooster

When we hatched our chicks last July we had no idea if they were hens or cockerels.  I thought we would find out pretty soon on, both developed along the same lines and in spite of looking up how to sex baby chicks on the interenet I could not tell.

Then gradually one chick started to grow larger than the other and I thought maybe this one will become a rooster, but there were no tell tail signs.  When they were large enough we integrated them into the existing flock and both got picked on and chased away from the food.  So we started sprinkling the food in 3 or 4 places around the run so that the new 2 had a chance of some.  Over the weeks this problem resolved itself and now they all eat peacefully together.

Big chook won’t roost like the others at night, he always stays in the nest box.  He certainly grew and grew and is now one and a half times bigger than the other hens.  Then he started to grow lovely feathers and curly tail feathers but didn’t crow and showed no interest in the hens.  I thought perhaps I had a gay cockerel!!

Then after 9 months he started to jump on the hens and 2 weeks ago he did his first “cock a doodle do”. So we know he is very definitely a rooster.

What a handsome chap he is too. He is half Welsummer and half Black Rock.

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Last week him and the girls were dustbathing in the churned up earth in the sunshine.

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Since then we have had rain and yesterday more snow, so no chance of a dustbath today.  We need to move the hens enclosure as soon as possible as they have churned up all the ground and there is no more grass where they are.  Still they are back laying well.  Most days we have 8 to 10 eggs from 13 pullets and one day we had 11, so they can’t be too unhappy, but we will move them soon. We have lovely fresh eggs for our B&B guests.

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5 Comments »

  1. That is a beautiful rooster. I’m sure his harem agree. Are you going to let them breed and give you cute little chicks?

    Isn’t it fun watching chickens bathe? I’m sure they don’t understand your obsession with having something growing in their enclosure – the more area for bathing, the better!

    • If one of our hens becomes broody, we may put some eggs under her and see what hatches. they will be a real mis match of breeds by then,but I don’t think it really matters

      • I agree, it doesn’t matter. I know some people work hard to keep old pure breeds going but I’m a believer in mixing up the gene pools. I feel the same with dogs, mutts are darling creatures and often a lot healthier than anything where breeding is controlled and selective (by humans as opposed to nature).

        I look forward to photos of your mutt chooks as they enter this world!

  2. Damaris said

    What an interesting story – how you gradually identified your cockerel. What sort of time does he crow in the morning?

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