Manfighting Roosters!

Manfighters can be a real challenge. If you get a rooster that turns mean on you, and wants to attack you every time he sees you, you have a couple of options. You can try to fix the problem, you can live with it, or you can cull the bird, and have a nice chicken dinner! If you decide to fix the problem, I have listed below some methods to try to straighten him out.

The first thing you need to do, is make sure that you don’t kick the bird away from you, or act aggressive towards him in any way. A good breeder never takes aggressive action against a manfighting rooster, as this will only hurt the situation.

For mild cases, you can sometimes just take a bucket into the pen with you, sit down, and spend time with your birds. You can take treats with you, and work on getting them to eat out of your hand. Then eventually, handling the birds too. When feeding time comes, sit down on your bucket, and spread a little food on the ground next to your feet, and get the birds to come right up next to you to feed. Once they get used to this, start trying to get them to feed out of your hand buy putting small amounts of feed in your cupped hand, and holding it out for them. You can use the treats for this too, like holding an apple for them to peck on. If your rooster comes up to you acting aggressive, talk soothing to him, and gently push him back if he looks like he is going to hit you. As the birds become more used to you, start touching them as you feed them too. The more they are comfortable with your touch, the friendlier they will become. If you get to the point you can pick up the rooster without chasing him, do so, and pet him on his chest, and talk soothing to him. Some people like to wear the thin cotton gloves so they are softer on the bird, and can help them feel more comfortable being held. If this works, all you have to do is keep doing it to keep your fowl friendly.

In extreme cases, you will need to separate the rooster from all other birds, and keep him from seeing them also. Someplace inside where you can keep it dark will help. Place him in this dark room, and leave him there for a couple days or so, without feed, and water, so he is very hungry and thirsty when you see him next time. After this, feed him a small amount of food, and water him. Work with some of the same methods above to get him to eat out of your hand, so you can touch him. You might be surprised how happy he will be to see you after being alone in the dark, and hungry! After a couple of weeks of this, and he responds well, move him to a pen in the light again, and while his is up and alert, put a hen in the pen with him and leave her there. This is like praising him, and he knows you are his friend, and gave him a girlfriend. If you can get this to work, just keep handling him, and working with him, and he might come around. If none if this works, cull him. Good luck!


3 Responses to “Manfighting Roosters!”

  1. 1 kelly1234
    November 16, 2008 at 2:17 am

    I say good luck with that. I do know if a rooster is handled from hatching to adult they usually will be fine. I also know that a generally tame rooster is fine unless his flock is around. He doesn’t share his flock with anyone or anything. Natural isn’t it?

    Anyway, I find they do quite well if you approach them. Not quite as well if you approach his ladies. I have been raising chickens and roosters for over 30 years and I agree with your advice. I do believe it is hard to impossible to tame them once they develop a mean streak.

    The real problem is that I don’t feel any rooster can ever be trusted. Too often they turn with absolutely no notice whatsoever.

  2. 2 doc
    November 17, 2008 at 7:01 pm

    Unless there is a reason for the manfighting; my opinion is you cull all manfighters. Who wants these genes in the pool? It is only by culling that cockers in the past have nearly eliminated manfighting from pit fowl. This is the reason that most manfighters are dunghills. It is not a trait breeders of egg-laying and meat breeds have selected against.

  3. November 24, 2008 at 4:17 am

    I agree with most of this,,,, but if you walk into a pen with a manfghting rooster to sit on a bucket your gonna be beat half to death before you get sit down….
    I think putting a manfighter on the tie cord so that you can easily pick him up every day is the best way to gentle a rooster… If he is crazy then there is nothing you can do for him. But if he is mean from lack of handling then there is hope…..

    I agree,,,,,, Never breed a manfighter….

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