Help! Rooster is Picking on 1 Hen!

by Noelene
(Stanthorpe, Qld, Australia)

I have 1 rooster and 5 hens. The rooster has singled out 1 hen and every time she comes out of the chicken coup he attacks her and chases her back in. He is fine with the other hens, it just seems that he has decided that hes doesn't like this one. What can I do to fix this problem?

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May 18, 2017
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Sadly, the same thing
by: Anonymous

Hey,

I had 13 hens and one nice rooster who never gave me a day's trouble. All of a sudden about 3 weeks ago he began picking on one hen. Because he was "nice", I would just get between them and tell him to get the hell away. Then this morning I noticed the poor hen had her head pecked and blood was dripping down her face. I stayed in the coop area for awhile to make sure the rooster stayed away from her. When I went to the coop to let the chickens out to eat a little grass tonight, I noticed the hen now had a pecked out eye and was missing feathers around her face. Sorry folks, had my husband kill the rooster. We are waiting to see if the hen will be okay. Wow. What a bummer.

Apr 27, 2017
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My rooster
by: Anonymous

I have a rooster that is picking on one hen all of a sudden. They are the same breed & raised together. They are both 2 yrs old & things have been fine until about a week ago. If she gets within 25' of him he takes after her. She forages all day by herself away from the other 9. I feel so sorry for her. I hate to get rid of him because he is so protective of the hens. If a hawk flies over he gives a little sound & they all hurry to get under a bush & stays there until he comes back out. I have another rooster that I hatched last year & they jump each other if one jumps a hen & she sqwacks but I have noticed recently the 2 roosters almost fight. Any suggestions on what to do about this sweet hen?

Feb 16, 2011
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Much better
by: Anonymous

Thanks for the comments. I agree. I did release the hen back to the flock and put rooster behind bars (dog kennel). All of the hens seem somewhat relieved, including previously injured bird. All were basking together in the dust bath, they seemed happy to have rooster away. He, on the other hand, paced the fence all afternoon. Would love to find him a home, but I am going to give him a while to mature and hopefully mellow. Not sure that will happen in seclusion though. Will see. Thanks!

Feb 15, 2011
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Rooster picking on 1 of 5 hens
by: Wyndy

I have the same thing happening, and it is driving me crazy! Have her separated as she was bloodied pretty badly. One other hen bowed up to her too. She is almost healed, but the roo still pesters her through the separation fence. I am nervous to release her, but I do want to try. I am hoping to let her out and fence up the young rooster. Will he mellow? He is only almost 6 months old. Thanks for any input.

Feb 08, 2011
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separating hen from rooster...
by: pilgrimscottage

I would just keep them separated even if it meant putting up a separate fence for the hen. Those things do happen.

Feb 03, 2011
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The rooster may know best
by: Steven

Hi Noelene, there is not really very much you can do except keep them separated. Not sure why this happens but I have seen it occasionally (but not very often). I suspect that there is something about her that he doesn't like; maybe a genetic difference (perhaps a weakness) or an illness that we can't see observe or sense. He will most likely eventually kill her if you don't keep them permanently separated. It seems cruel to us but is probably just natural selection taking its course.

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