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Written by Carole

It seems that roosters have a bad reputation. When I received my first set of chickens, including a rooster, I was warned to watch out. Being new to raising chickens, I had no idea what they were talking about.

Move forward a few years and yes, I do know what they were warning me of but I am glad to write that I have not had to deal with any aggressive rooster as yet. So maybe that is why today’s post is about the benefits of having a rooster.

Benefits I Can Think Of…

1. Protection of the flock. The rooster is on constant guard for predators such as hawks, snakes, and any other animal that is likely to cause harm to the flock. Like other bird species, he is brightly colored so he draws attention to himself instead of the female of the flock.

2. Fertilization of eggs. Without the rooster there will be no more addition to the flock unless you purchase eggs or additional chickens from an outside source.

3. Excellent alarm clock if you like to wake up early. I know I am grasping for straws but my rooster does wake me up every morning, I just hope he doesn’t wake the neighbors.

Okay, I have thought of three. I have done some research also but could find no other benefits that only the rooster offers. I am sure there are others that are obvious but it escapes me at the moment. What about you, do you know some benefits to raising roosters that we can share with the readers?

If you have roosters than you may be interested in learning how to trim rooster spurs. Here’s a brief article, Removing Rooster Spurs that focuses on the hot potato method of removing spurs.

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47 Responses to “Benefits of Raising Roosters”

  1. One of my subscribers via email, Ed, responded to this post and I wanted to share his comments:

    ED: My rooster is my favorite chicken. He is the only one that comes right up to me and loves his neck scratched. I am new to chickens so I do not know what to expect as he matures, but I do not think he will be giving me any trouble.

    You can add bug control as a benefit of roosters (chickens in general.)

    I let mine run free on my property all day long and I don’t even buy food for them. I give them our hosuehold scraps, and they forage for food all over my acre during the day. I unfortunately lost one of them yesterday due to a raccoon (at 3:30 pm??) I sure wish my rooster was old enough to have kicked tho poop out of the darn racoon.
    I have found I cannot add any chickens to my mini flock. The chickens (roosters especially) peck the newcomers.

    Do you have any suggestions about adding new chickens to a flock???

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    Maw Reply:

    I, too acquired some chicks from a friend. 4 very small birds. They have grown, considerably in 4 months. We now have 2 hens (we think) and definately have 2 roosters. We went to our local market and bought 5 laying hens hoping they would teach the other hens how to lay, but mayhem insued. Fighting between everybody. They are now seperated with a chicken wire door to see if they will acclimate to each other. it has only been 4 days. The roosters do pace around the laying hens pen, and we had an instance where a laying hen flew out, but they all still fight. Idon’t know whether to walk away and let them figure it out or what. Any suggestions from this blog?

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    Carole Reply:

    Maw, Chickens have pecking orders which is determined by the most dominant chicken/hen and this is what your hens are trying to establish. They will adjust in time but until then you will have fighting going on. When I have the same issue I watch closely for any feather picking, open wounds on chickens, etc.. but other than that I just let them do their ritual. It usually only last about a week and after that they have determined who is the boss.

    Glad you came to visit the blog and thank you for your kind words!

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    karen Reply:

    Hi there I have learned that I could not add to the flock… all they did was peck eachohter and it took all the joy out of being with my chickens..and tried everything…separeted them…..then I got a rooster and they all peck and chased him. i got rid of the 2 newer girls and the remaining 3 settled in well together, but they all still chased and pecked the rooster(him being a baby) well fast forward .9 months later and He has changed into a very aggressive male…chasing and mounting them…they are all miserable and terrified of him (they are all 3 yrs old) so the rooster is going to a new home asap…i really loved him and he is SO beautiful…but my girls are beside them selves…hope this helped.
    Karen

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    sandra Reply:

    to begin with when introducing new chickens to the hen house protect the new one with wire that they can be seen but not punished after a while could be weeks they will adjust to their presence aventually you will be able to remove the wire there will still be a pecking order happen but it will not be so cruel

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  2. I love roosters because they are just downright entertaining!! I can sit for hours and laugh my head off at their antics. (Much better than tv!)
    Sorry the incubator experiment didn’t work, Carole… I know you’ll have better luck next time!

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  3. Living in a town our neighbours really didn’t like that we had a cockerel. Admittedly it was crowing every morning at 5am though. Noone would rehome him for us though so we had to bite the bullet and turn him into pie :(

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  4. Is there anyway a rooster can be made to quiet down?

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  5. Farm Chick Paula, I enjoy the roosters also but sometimes if you have neighbors they can be a little loud and as the next commenter, Bob, wrote, the neighbors cause you to get rid of them. I am persevering on the skillet experience. I am confident I will have success if I keep trying.

    Bob, Sorry to hear about not being able to have roosters but a choice between friendly neighbors and a loud rooster, I would have to do what you did.

    Eileen, I personally do not know of a way unless it would be surgically and I cannot imagine going to the expense of that. My new white young rooster I highlighted in a couple of entries, his crowing almost sounds like a buzz saw and is very low. But he is still young so it may grow in volume as he ages.

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    joeyo Reply:

    i like in cleveland,and i one hen,and a rooster.,my 16 year girl loves them.he does not make any sound at all,my hen does.this is my first time doing this,and i really have no clue what im doing,but im having a good time.so if anyone can help me just email me at joeyo2525@yahoo.com,thank you

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  6. I have a beautiful rooster, Mr. Black, whom is wonderful! Today, my yoorkie decided to visit the chicken coop. Mr. Black being such a rooster, was protecting the hens, so the yoorkie tangled with him. Poor Mr. Black lost by loosing his beautiful tail feathers! My question is, Will the tail feathers grow back, and how long will it take? thank You for your advice. Carol

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  7. Carol, So sorry about the rooster tail feathers. When I had my first Light Brahma rooster the neighbors dog got after it and pulled all of his tail feathers out also. No fear, they do grow back. It took about a month but they grew back just as beautiful.

    Thanks for visiting and commenting. Come back real soon!

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  8. I am wondering why are rooster feathers sooooo expensive? You were saying that rooster tail feathers grow back so do people grow them to harvest their feathers like sheep and wool or do the roosters have to die to make a feather profit?
    I love the feathers hate the thought of them dying though just for that.
    Also does anyone know of a cheap source for feathers? I want to use them for projects with inner city children.
    peaces and joy.

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  9. Viv, Being a raiser of poultry I was not aware of the rooster feathers being expensive or in demand. Not knowing enough about the subject I would hate to comment one way or the other. I also do not know a source for the feathers but if I were searching my first source would be the internet and then a local farmers market. Roosters molt the same as hens so they lose their tail feathers to bring on new ones at least once a year.

    Good luck in your search. Thanks for visiting and I hope you come back soon!

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  10. i have two roosters they got into a fight, and now my red rooster will not stay inside at night. can you have more than one rooster? luella

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  11. Luella, I also have two roosters and if I allowed them the opportunity they would fight all the time. My solution is to keep them separated and rotate the free ranging schedule. I have two coops so have no problem doing this. They still fight through the chicken wire but it is not as easy as if they were loose together.

    For you it may be different so I am afraid you will have to come up with the solution that works best for you.

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  12. i ordered 25 pearl white leghorns from mc murray hatchery. am i in trouble when they get older. if i raise them together will they still fight. thats alot of roosters and i dont want them all killing eachother. thanks!

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  13. I have a fully enclosed yard, so no problem there.

    What I want to know is: how much space does a rooster need, if it’s just going to roam free in my yard?

    It is coming from a small ranch, where it has a few hens and a couple of younger roosters to ‘be’ with …. will it get lonely and/or agressive if it is suddenly alone? Well, not totally alone, I have a dog who will gladly volunteer to chase him in fun.

    Does it NEED a real shelter, or will it find itself a favorite spot somewhere in my yard (quite large, with several large clumps of plants)??

    will it eat plants or bugs in the flower beds?
    Can I broadcast the seed mixture all over the yard, or should I decide on a feeding spot and always throw seed there ?

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  14. Suzanne, I’ll try and answer your questions in the way I would do it but just know you will probably get other responses posted here so you might want to subscribe to the comments for further updates.

    how much space does a rooster need, if it’s just going to roam free in my yard?Lots of people keep their roosters in a coop or chicken run at all times so space determines on how often you like to clean. If you have a large yard and will be free ranging then you should have no problems. On the other hand, a rooster and a dog don’t usually make the best of friends. I’m sure there are cases but I have a rooster who attacks my dog every time it turns around.

    Does it NEED a real shelter, or will it find itself a favorite spot somewhere in my yard (quite large, with several large clumps of plants)??Chickens need a shelter, mainly for protection from the weather and predators. Your yard may be fenced in but I can tell you from experience a hawk is not held back by fencing. Bushes and trees are good protection for them but having a central location for the chicken to roost is always a good idea.

    will it eat plants or bugs in the flower beds?They will eat anything that is in your flower bed and scratch out the plants you may have planted. I feed my chickens in one central location but that does not keep them from roaming around the yard and scratching in my flower beds.

    I’m assuming you will be getting a hen to keep the rooster company. Chickens are social creatures and like being with each other and people also. He will be much happier with a partner to roam the yard.

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    Lynn Reply:

    I asked my neighbor the same question (whether they will eat my plants) and was told to sprinkle red pepper around the areas I want my rooster to leave alone. They go after the bugs (good) but the scratching motion will ruin your plantings.

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    michele Reply:

    carol i won a rooster at a county fair. i fell in love with him, i built him a large house i live in florida just moved here any way a fox got him..ive been crying for 3 days now…i feel so bad, i thought my neighbor new more then me and i listened to him, he said the rooster was safe to leave the door open. HE WAS WRONG , and i was stupid to listen to him…so now I’ve moved the rooster house in my garage { its attached to the house } he would go in the garage every night, until i built the house and put it in the yard.. i was told where you first put them they always come back..every night when it started to get dark he would come in the garage, we would chase him in his house..my question is this.. during the day he would walk all over the yard. I’m afraid to let the new rooster roam around the yard during the day now…also if i decide to get another one will he come in the garage like the first rooster i had?? or should i just not get one again, because if it happens again, i think i would have a break down….im still sick over this…i don’t no what to do…my email is blutogeorge@yahoo.com any help would be so appreciated…. thank you

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  15. Carole: thanks so much for the comments. Regarding my dog. This rooster is presently living at a friend’s acreage (for lack of a better word) My friend has 2 dogs, 1 cat and often babysits my dog for weeks on end … so they are used to each other already.

    My friend is moving to a small place in town, and can’t take her few hens and roosters, and I love this guy AND I love hearing roosters in the morning … so I have this fantasy of just having him roam my yard, thought it is about 1/3 the size of what he is used to.

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  16. Hi
    I have 5 chickens, 3 children and a dog. I have a feeling that my huge black, long tailed chicken is perhaps a rooster. he is really big and has feathers on his legs, he walks with kind of a strut and makes a funny noise when he talks, not the delicate clucking. When you open the coop in the morning – he flies out like a fat rocket.

    So, if he is in fact a he and not a she, presumably I will know when he cock a doodle doos. But is there any chance if that is the case that he will not attack my children or dog? Currently he runs away and is the only non friendly chicken although I had him as a baby. The rest follow me around like little pets.

    I dont really want to get rid of him but if I have to because of the children then I think I would prefer to do it earlier.

    Vivienne

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  17. Vivienne, Only time will tell about your rooster’s personality. I have three roosters right now and two do not run from the dog or pay attention to it and neither seem to be the type of want to attack me or the dog. One is a year old and the other is less than year.

    My older rooster does not attack me or the dog but is scared of the dog. He will run when the dog is around. Each rooster is different.

    From what you have written it sounds like you do have a rooster, mainly from the tail description. Watch him closely, especially with your children, and time will tell whether he is friendly or not.

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  18. I was on vacation in the country in southern Ohio. The property next to our cabin was enclosed in a forest and from the early hours of the morning until about 9:oo p.m. the sound of roosters was almost constant. I snooped around and saw through a small clearing ALOT of roosters tied to barrels. The middle of the barrels were hollowed out with straw in this middle area! I do not know much about roosters, but this did not look normal to me. Any suggestions?

    Nikko

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  19. @ nikko; Sounds like an underground chicken fighting ring to me! Lol
    Call the authorities to investigate maybe..?

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  20. HI I live in a residential area, Although there is more empty lots than homes.(We are not zoned for agriculter) Anyway we have a house nearby, and there have alot of Roosters. More Roosters than chickens. Some in a big cage, some in coups and some run in the yard.It is a standard size yard.. Why would they have them? What is there use cause I never see anyone collecting eggs or anything? For some reason I have a feeling they may be selling the for cock fights. I have no proof but wondered what they are doing with all these roosters! Any info would help Thank you ! Kelly

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    Carole Reply:

    Not knowing the area or the situation it would be hard to say. I have several roosters myself but I am trying to have at least one for each breed of chicken that I carry. But my hens out-number the roosters. There are reasons for keeping a large amount of roosters and cock fighting could be one of them.

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    Maw Reply:

    My neighbors have 8 dogs that bark all night. My roosters sleep through it all to wake me up at 5. :)

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  21. I am hoping someone can help me!!! I bought 6 baby chicks because I thought It would be a fun experience for my kids to have. It seems that we have 5 roosters and 1 hen. We love them dearly, however I am afraid that the roosters are going to start having problems with each other. 1 hen is not enough and I think it is simply way too much for her to have to deal with. I have separated her for now, but I don’t know what to do about the boys. They seem to get along for now but as they get older I don’t know how it is going to be! I can’t eat them or give them to someone who might, it just breaks my heart! Any suggestions?

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  22. i also have 5 boys- mama chicken had 5 boys 5 girls- these were all wild chickens until i built a coop for them.The boys seemed to be getting along just fine tell yesterday,when one of the boys almost killed another boy,my daughter tried to stop them she finally sprayed them with water.i also dont know what to do about my 5 boys,i kicked 2 out of the coop,now they just walk around it crowing all day.I love my boys,but cant handle the fighting. Im wondering if i should remove all but 1 boy from the coop,then theres the question… what do i do with the other 4 roosters???

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    Carole Reply:

    Right now I have four roosters in one pen but they are getting of age to the point of fighting so I am dwindling the number down to two. I take mine to an small animal auction.

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  23. I have four roosters that we recently moved out of a chicken coop to our farm house and they run loose. My problem is they are roosting on my back porch and making quite a nasty mess. We have a huge tree row on the north side of the house but they always end up back on the porch. Do you have any suggestions for a cleaner porch? Thanks

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    Carole Reply:

    Donna, Perhaps you could spray them with a water hose to get them to move to another spot. I would think eventually they would stop trying to roost there. Let me know if you try it and it works.

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  24. This has been one of the most insightful spots on the net. There really isn’t much on rooster raising. But from personal experience, I give my 2 guys plenty of room and I have 3 different feeding “spots” in my yard. I do keep them seperate from the laying hens so I don’t have to worry about ferltized eggs.They have their on coop, on the back of the laying hens coop. They are free range and the layers are kept in a pen and fed grains and laying mash.The boys crow ALOT, and I love it. Nostalgic. I want to turn the layers loose too but I’m afraid they will all start fighting.

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  25. We bought eight chicks in March two are huge and are for eating,but how do I tell if any of the other six may be a rooster,I have no idea what to look for can you help?

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  26. Onw way to find out if your chicks are male is the color of the chick. In some breeds, the males are different colors than females. Their wing feathers are also a giveaway. Females generally have shorter wing tip feathers.

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    Beverly Reply:

    I guess mine are all hens then,and one more question when do they start laying at what age? Thanks for your help,Bev

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  27. If I get a young aracana rooster, how long before he is old enough to mate?

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    Carole Reply:

    I don’t want to claim to be an expert but in my opinion I would think he should start mating around 6 months old.

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  28. How old does a rooster have to be before it starts to make the rooster crow?

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    Carole Reply:

    Beverly, rooster start crowing at various ages normally determined by the breed. In my experiences most start crowing around 4 months of age.

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  29. Thank you Carole, This is all new to me so any help I can get I really appreciate it. I moved from a small town in northern wisc.to Indiana and we bought a small farm it really gets cold up north and not so bad here but do we need to heat the barn in the winter? I know we have to keep their water from freezing in the winter any suggestions?

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  30. My family is thinking about getting chick to grow up to chickens. Do you have any good information for us?

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  31. Hello

    I’ve always wanted a rooster to roam the yard. My wish has come true but the problem is I live in a somewhat high end neighborhood. I’m not so worried about the crowing, just the crowing at 5:00 AM. I’m having a house built with a ramp up to the entrance. When the door shuts, it will be completely dark until opened, certainly after 5:00AM, more like 8:00AM. Do you think the blackout box will prevent the rooster from crowing at 5:00AM?

    Thank you much!

    Tom

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  32. Hi,

    I got two Americana hens about three years ago, and this year got a barred rock hen and rooster. I tend to baby them all, bringing them inside the house and feeding them treats and such, however, I’ve heard some differing veiwpoints on whether this is good for young roos or not, the theory against being that if he ends up aggresive, he won’t be fearful of me. He’s four months old right now and so far is pretty sweet. He doesn’t rush to greet me or anything like that, but he’s fairly docile and loves getting his chin scratched. So, my question is, is it okay for me to cuddle with him and be friends or should I take a more hands off approach?

    P.S. Great info here!! Keep up the good work!

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  33. a rhode island red rooster has adopted me. he hangs out with my outside cats, visits the neighbors and loves to be rocked and cuddled. he comes when i call him and is so glad to see me. he seems very happy, does he really need a hen for company? he is free roaming during the day but sleeps in the garage at night with the cats.

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