Lifespan of a rooster

flowersnhens(Maine 4)September 6, 2008

Hi there everyone....I have a rooster who is about 6 years old. He is a white silkie mix. He has been acting strange,,not crowing,,and just sort of standing around real still..and kind of hiding in my raspberry beds at times so nobody can see him. Could he be dying of old age??? How long do they live??? He is my only rooster,,and he is a really good boy !!. I hope I am not losing him. Any advice would be appreciated. Thanks, Flowersnhens

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chickens can usually live 10-15 years. i know someone that has a 16 year old bantam boy that still crows and struts his stuff all day.

if your rooster is getting sick, its probably not from old age, but you never know. just keep an eye on him for the next few days!

    Bookmark   September 6, 2008 at 2:47PM
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velvet_sparrow(Zone 5b, Gardnerville, NV)

He should be a healthy fella pretty much in his prime, still. Does he have any competition from other roos, or even aggressive hens? Silkies are such laid-back little guys...

I'd check him for signs of illness--weight loss, weird poops (or worms), discharge from his eyes & nares (nostrils), mites, etc. Being prey animals, chickens tend to not show signs of illness until they are pretty far gone, so don't wait. If it has been super hot where you are, he could be suffering from heat distress. I've got a chicken info site that might help, here is the page on illness with diagnostic hints:

As for the not crowing thing--be sure to look in his mouth & throat for signs of growths, fungus, injuries, etc., and hold him up next to your ear & listen for sounds of gurgling in his lungs when he breathes.

If you determine that he is healthy (but it does sound like SOMETHING is ailing him), grab a chair and sit out there for a bit at different times of the day & observe--is he being bullied? Is his crest so thick that maybe he cannot see well? What happens when you first let everyone out in the morning--does he head straight for his hiding place?

Any info you can gather about this will help you find out what's wrong.

Velvet ~:>

    Bookmark   September 6, 2008 at 6:21PM
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flowersnhens(Maine 4)

HI there,,,Velvet and Goatgirl, he is my only rooster. I keep only one for the sake of avoiding rooster problems. Do you remember the pictures I posted of him??? It is my white silkie that you saw a picture of about 2 months ago. (I know velvet saw him, cuz she thought he was handsome)..=) When I open the coop in the morning he comes right out with the hens and eats and drinks. He almost seems to be standing funny too. ALso, I have a golden polish that use to be his mate for the past 6 years until I got 10 pullets and now he has 11 girls. Anyways, she has been sleeping OUTSIDE of the coop at night,,and not to be seen during the day after she eats. I think she is nesting somewhere...unusual for a polish hen I believe, isn't it??? Anyways, I am wondering if maybe he is mourning because he thinks she is gone. I see her in the early mornings eating and drinking water and then I dont see her again until the next morning. I have been trying to get up in time to see where she is wandering off to after she eats. I keep water and food out for her. Tomorrow morning I will be able to watch where she goes. I have been working late until midnight 5 nights a week, so it is difficult for me to be up before 7am. She was out there yesterday when they were outside and I am sure he saw her,,but maybe he is sad because she is never around anymore. What do you think? I will check him tomorrow for the things you talked about in your post. Thanks for your help. I appreciate it. Oh, and another thing..When I go outside to throw them treats during the day,,he runs over with the rest of the I am figuring if he is sick, he wouldnt really be eating, right???.

    Bookmark   September 6, 2008 at 7:26PM
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