Replacing My Rooster
Earlier this year my rooster, Del the Delaware, fell ill. It was obvious he would not survive much longer, so I put him down. Since then there has been no one to serenade us in the morning and I’ve really missed hearing the cock-a-doodle-doo of a rooster. I decided to put an ad on Craigslist offering a new home for an extra rooster or two. Quite often people order pullets and end up with a young cockerel in the mix. So, why not give an unwanted chicken a new home?
Two New Roosters!
A really nice lady contacted me about her 2 extra roosters. She had too many and wanted to find a new home for these guys. We made arrangements to meet. I brought my cat carriers (they get used for chickens more often than cats) and headed to Farm and Fleet, halfway between my place and her farm. It was really nice to meet her and her husband…my kinda folks. He wore a cowboy hat adorned with bear claws and she is a very down to earth lady. We chatted about chickens and raising your own food, hunting and butchering, gardening and whatnot. I sent them home with a bag of Egyptian Walking onions for their garden.
One Rooster Too Many?
I brought the new boys home to meet their harem of 43 ladies. Everything seemed fine for several hours. All was well each time I checked in on the flock. I figured they would get along since these roosters were raised together. They seemed content to dance for the girls and investigate their new digs.
Then… all heck broke loose!
As I walked out the kitchen door toward the coop, I heard a terrible ruckus. Squawking and blood curdling screeches emanated from the pen. I found the two roosters locked in mortal combat. Feathers were flying, blood was spattered on their necks, and they seemed intent on doing each other in. I separated them and checked for serious injuries. There weren’t any gaping wounds, just some bloody spots on their combs…mostly on the small brown rooster.
Maybe This Isn’t Going to Work…
The flock settled back into their normal routine. The roosters each retreated to opposite ends of the coop. I turned the light off and closed the door to the pasture, gave them their evening meal and clean water, then headed to the house.
This morning the little brown roo had one eye closed and was huddled behind a nesting box and one of the hens. The arrangement obviously isn’t working out, so I moved some things out of my garden shed and set it up with a dish of food and water. I hastily erected a pen and moved the brown rooster to his new home. I assume that, although they were raised together and got along well in the past, having a flock of hens made them too territorial.
Naming The Roosters
It’s not working out quite the way I planned, but things seldom do. I’ll need to figure out a better long term solution for housing two roosters separately. In the meantime, I named these two Popeye and Brutus…which seems fitting now that they are enemies.
Update: This all happened several years ago. Since then, Popeye and a couple of my hens went to live on another homestead. Brutus chased off a fox and lost his tail feathers in the process. He has since passed away. RIP Brutus.