Chicken Relationships?


Terri Yaki:
And no, I'm not talking about pecking orders. Here's a story about chickens pairing up and I never heard of this before. Any keepers of chickens see this kind of behavior?

I did not read the link but have noticed that chickens seem to make fiends or bosun buddies based on color and/or on age.  The color one might be age and not color as many times you get a couple of new chicks of the same color when you start them out.  Some chicken are more loners but I have seen some really like to stay close to each other.

Yup.  I have a couple that are always together.  They are also the oldest of the hens.  I have a couple that are happy to escape and be out alone too. 

Almost all of my free range chickens only want to mate with one rooster. Some of the roosters have 3, 4 or five hens. Some only have one hen. One in case was in the turkey house with just one hen for a long time. Now they are both free range and they just stay together. We have 3 roosters that only have one hen. All of the roosters with hens have to stay close to protect their hens. If a hen is out by herself very long, one of the several bachelors or all of them will go after the hen. She screams blood mary and her rooster will come and run them off. The hen will not raise her tail to those roosters but will sit quietly and raise her tail to her own rooster every time. Sometimes we will see a hen squat down next to her rooster to tell him she is ready.
Jim Altmiller

Often with multiple roo's the lower pecking order, younger or old roo's will take what they can get.  Often taking or going after the hens that isolate themselves to get away from all the roo's and higher pecking order hens.   After last years batch of hatching you could watch the order move/change.  There was one main roo in both coops.  The bigger, older of the younger hatch took over the small coop's spot and ran off the old roster.  Later another hatch with more males than hens, who stayed in the bigger coop ran off the big roo then eventually took the share that they could get.  The youngest went away from the coop with the hens that were trying to run away from what was a gang of young roster's.  Eventually staying in their little clicks.  2 hens that stayed away from all the constant raping even stayed away after butchering the extras.
  Those 2 hens are still getting in my garden after closing the gate. grrr


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