My Rhode Island Red chickens (13 hens and 8 roosters) are now 17 weeks old, just one week away from ‘sexual maturity.’ Some of the Roos have already been ‘chasing after the ladies’ and at least one of the hens has started laying (by my best guess, anyway. I never see who lays except Abby).
One Roo in particular has become a bit of a scoundrel, and not in the good way. I spent a good half hour this morning ‘explaining’ to him how he’s NOT really ‘God’s Gift to the hens’ just because he’s there and that the sexlink hen (21 weeks) he just tried to force himself on did not actually want his attentions.
She’d just come into the coop looking for a place to lay her egg and he followed her, chased her into the corner and tried to mount her. She shrieked and ran back outside. He followed and there was more shrieking. The next thing I know, she’s running up the steps and into the BARN, where I saved her by stepping in between them and picking her up. Poor thing was flustered and panting!
I walked around to the coop and put her safely into a laying box. When I turned around, there HE was again. He stayed in the coop the whole time I was cleaning the beds and filling the waterers, like he was waiting for her come out of the beds.
So I lectured him.
I told him that 1) she didn’t want his attentions because 2) she was trying to lay her egg and 3) he was a ‘little shithead’
What I didn’t tell him, although it should be obvious, is that the older hens all ‘belong’ to Double Dots, our sexlink rooster. They all grew up together and they like him.
Not only that, but Dots is a gentleman with his ‘girlfriends.’ He takes them on dates (long walks around the barnyard), finds them grubs and other good stuff to eat, protects them from the unwanted attentions of the younger RiR shitheads. He dances for them and does the Matador/wing drop. He most definitely does NOT force himself upon his girlfriends like this ill-mannered bird did this morning.
Which is probably the biggest reason why my poor hen did not want that boy. She already has a man. Er… rooster.