Many people love the idea of having a rooster as part of their chicken flock. The early morning crowing is so iconic of farm life that when allowed, chicken owners often want to experience it.
But, roosters can be aggressive. This becomes problematic if you have children around and in some cases, it can be dangerous for kids and adults alike.
In addition to the steps you can take to mellow out aggressive roosters, it also helps to know which chicken breeds tend to cultivate more aggressive roosters and which ones tend to have more mellow roosters.
This will help you to make a good decision when you decide to add a rooster to your flock.
Aggressive Chicken Breeds With Aggressive Roosters
Wild and game chicken breeds are more aggressive chicken breeds. Wilder chicken breeds are usually those breeds that are only recently domesticated and come from the jungles and forests of Asia.
Chickens are still used to defending themselves and have not been domesticated for enough generations to breed a more mellow disposition.
Game breeds are chicken breeds that have been specifically bred for hundreds of years for cockfighting. As a result, the more aggressive roosters have been bred to create aggressive breeds.
1 .Malay Roosters
Malay chickens were originally brought to England from India and Asia. They were bred to be cockfighting birds and so are generally very aggressive. They are perhaps the most aggressive breed of chickens, although the English Game can compete with them.
Malay roosters are one of the biggest roosters in the world. In addition to being practically all muscle, they are also large. They easily stand 3 feet tall. They have a strong, stout beak and thick legs. This makes them tough in a fight.
Malay roosters are bold and fearless. They can kill or harm chicks as they are not very friendly toward smaller chickens. They need plenty of space and can be aggressive toward other chickens, animals, and people.
It’s not uncommon for a Malay rooster to attack a cat or take on a dog. They literally have no fear of predators.
Malay roosters that are kept together will fight to the death. They will not tolerate other Malay roosters in their territory.
2. Old English Game Roosters
Old English Game Roosters are another breed that was bred specifically for cockfights. The Old English Game is a beautiful and colorful rooster with gorgeous feathers.
But, don’t let this beautiful bird fool you. Roosters and hens are very aggressive and will not play nicely with other breeds of chickens. They should be kept separate from other chickens. Roosters won’t tolerate other roosters in the area and will fight until the other rooster leaves or dies.
In addition to being aggressive toward other chickens and animals, Old English Game roosters will also be aggressive toward people. This includes adults and children alike.
If you raise Old English Game chickens, make sure to allow them plenty of space. They don’t coop up very well. The mothers are great and protective moms and will hatch their own eggs.
Roosters grow to only about 4 pounds and aren’t afraid of anything. They are a great rooster to protect the flock and aren’t afraid of a fight. They were born to fight!
3. Cornish Chickens – Indian Game
Cornish chickens are the most used breed for meat chickens and are the most popular heritage meat chicken. The Cornish Cross comes from a cross between the Cornish Chicken and a Plymouth White Rock.
Cornish chickens are aggressive. They were previously called the Indian Game chicken. They were first imported to England hundreds of years B.C. As the breed was developed in more recent years, breeders called them Cornish chickens to promote them as meat chickens while also calling them Indian Game when the cocks were used in cockfighting.
They are very muscular birds with a big attitude. They are aggressive, although the hens aren’t as aggressive as the roosters. They need plenty of space and should be combined in flocks with other roosters.
Chicks tend to be more aggressive than chicks from other breeds. You may notice feather pulling at only a couple of days old. They are also more likely to start cannibalism at a young age.
4. Asil or Aseel Chickens
Asil chickens also spelled Aseel or Asli, are aggressive, fighting chickens. They have been called the most fighting chicken in the world.
Roosters are very territorial. This breed should not be combined in flocks with other breeds.
Chicks often start fighting before they reach a week old. Cocks should be separated by 3 months of age to prevent to-the-death fights.
The Asil is stubborn, majestic, and has high stamina. The roosters will outlast most any threat that presents itself- that includes you!
Asil chickens originated in India and were brought to Europe for the purpose of cockfighting. Centuries before they were introduced in Europe, they were bred in India for cockfighting so their aggressive nature is thousands of years old.
Hens are aggressive toward each other and can be very aggressive toward their human caretakers, but it isn’t always the case. Some Asil owners also claim that Asil chickens are very friendly to humans and are only aggressive toward other chickens and animals.
Hens can become aggressive toward specific chicks so if you are raising Asil chicks, make sure to watch for aggression and to separate the chicks most at danger. Roosters will fight to the death.
Asil chickens should not be cooped up or kept in small places. They also do poorly in colder weather. There are several varieties of Asil chickens.
5. Modern Game Chickens
Modern Game chickens descended from Old English Game and produce a brightly colored, but fierce rooster.
Both roosters and hens can be aggressive and they aren’t a great breed for new chicken owners, although they can be trained to be more mellow with experience.
Modern Game roosters will fight other roosters to the death and shouldn’t be allowed or kept with other roosters. This usually happens even when cocks are raised from hatchlings together. Once the hormones kick in- it’s fighting time.
They are very active roosters and require adequate space. They don’t do well in confinement but prefer to free-range.
Modern Game chickens originate from a combination of Old English Game and Malay heritage. They are great show birds because of how colorful and bright their appearance is. They weren’t bred as a game bird, but still have much of the aggression of their ancestors inherent in the roosters and hens. They aren’t as aggressive as either Malay or Old English Game but are still considered a more aggressive breed.
Modern Game roosters grow to about 6 pounds.
6. American Game Chickens – Roundheads
American game chickens were bred for cockfighting. They are a territorial, aggressive bird. Both roosters and hens can be aggressive and should be kept from other varieties of chickens. This breed is a noisy chicken breed.
Roosters will not tolerate other roosters in the flock and must be kept separate from other roosters to prevent death fighting.
American Game is a more wild bird. They fly easier than other breeds like to roost in trees, and love free-ranging, although it can be hard to find the eggs.
American Game hens will bully new hens and don’t like newbies in the flock.
Although American Game is more aggressive, the roosters tend to be good fathers and aren’t as aggressive toward their own young.
American Game chickens have a rich history and were the breed that George Washington, Thomas Jefferson and Abraham Lincoln raised.
American Game chickens are raised mainly as ornamental birds and come in nearly any color combination. They have long beautifully colored feathers and do well at chicken shows.
American Game has many varieties including the nicknames Roundheads, Sweaters, Marsh Butchers, Bumblefoot Grey, and Whitehackles. All of these nicknames refer to a specific strain or coloring of American Game chickens.
7. Oriental Game Chickens – Oriental Fowls – Jungle Fowl
Oriental game chickens and Oriental long-feathered chickens were also a fighting chicken bred for cockfights. They are also referred to as Oriental Fowls. Oriental game chickens can come in Vietnamese, Burmese, Thai, or other Asian varieties. You may also see them referred to as jungle fowl.
They are possibly the most ancient of all breeds and the breed closest to the original wild chicken that was first domesticated thousands of years ago.
As a result, Oriental Game chickens still have the fight to live instinct and are very wild. They fly well, roost in trees, and aren’t afraid to fight to the death.
However, many of these breeds of chickens are rare and fighting extinction.
Oriental Fowls are fierce and chicks will often fight immediately upon hatching. Even hens are aggressive, although they often mellow with age. The hens are great mothers and do well hatching and raising their young.
Cocks should be kept separate as they will continually fight to the death. These athletic birds are very adept at taking care of themselves. They are muscular with thick, widespread legs. They are a cousin to the Asil Chicken.
Other varieties of Oriental Fowl include:
- Thai Game Fowl: Still used for cockfighting in Thailand. It’s known for its intellect and quick reactions.
- Shamo: The second tallest chicken breed. A very aggressive bird that is also a protected species in Japan.
- Saipan Jungle Fowl: An upright chicken from the island of Saipan. It has been used for fighting and bred into larger breeds for competition. It’s not an accepted breed in the USA.
- Red Jungle Fowl: A chicken raised for its independence and as a food source. This chicken hasn’t been coddled by owners and has retained its original wilderness even though it’s been domesticated for a thousand years.
- Sumatra: This is the best flying chicken of all chickens, flying as far as 5 miles on the wind. They can jump up to 6 feet. Roosters are aggressive toward other roosters. This breed is fighting extinction.
Frequently Asked Questions About Specific Breeds:
Are Silkie Roosters Aggressive? Most silkie roosters are friendly and non-aggressive toward humans. But, individual Silkie roosters may be more aggressive than their cuddly- teddy bear appearance would suggest. Silkie roosters can have a wide range of individual temperaments. As a general rule, Silkie chickens tend to be near the bottom of the pecking order and less aggressive with other chickens than most other breeds.
Are Polish Roosters Aggressive? Polish chickens have an adorable tuft that makes it harder for them to see and respond to danger. As a result, the chickens tend to be less aggressive toward other chickens and are often the bullied chickens in a mixed flock. At the same time, the lack of peripheral vision can make roosters jumpy and nervous. This can occasionally translate into more skittish behavior, but rarely aggressive behavior.
Are Bantam Roosters Aggressive? As a rule most breeds of bantam chickens are not aggressive. Because of their smaller size, roosters are generally sweet and friendly. This can change a little during the mating seasons, but won’t generally result in high aggression.
Are Brahma Roosters Aggressive? Brahma chickens are considered one of the calmest chicken breeds around. Even though they are very large chickens, the roosters are usually mellow and friendly.
Are Ameraucana Roosters Aggressive? Ameraucana roosters are not generally thought to be aggressive, but the breed can produce some aggressive individuals. Although Ameraucana roosters aren’t considered an aggressive rooster, they are generally a little more aggressive than some of the calmer breeds.
Are Easter Egger Roosters Aggressive? Easter Egger chickens aren’t an actual breed and so the roosters can have a wide variety of temperaments depending on their genetics and heritage. Some Easter Egger chickens will be more aggressive while others will be super mellow and calm. It completely depends on the variety of Easter Eggers you raise. Easter Eggers aren’t considered an actual breed so there isn’t a set standard or set of genetics that you can depend on.
Are Leghorn Roosters Aggressive? Among egg-laying roosters, Leghorns are one of the most aggressive roosters. Leghorn hens tend to develop larger wattles and the roosters have large wattles and leg spurs that make an attack more painful.
Even so, they aren’t considered a super aggressive breed as there are very aggressive breeds usually not raised by chicken owners.
Are Welsummer Roosters Aggressive? Welsummer roosters are not usually aggressive. Of course, rough handling can create a defensive roo, but generally speaking Welsummer roosters are mellow enough for most people and even kids.
Are Australorp Roosters Aggressive? Australorp chickens are one of the most mellow chicken breeds around. Even the roosters tend to be friendly and non-aggressive. If mixed with other breeds, Australorp hens will generally be at the bottom of the pecking order and the roosters generally submit to other rooster breeds.
Are Serama Roosters Aggressive? Serama chickens are the smallest chicken breed in the world. They are usually calm and mellow chickens. In some cases, the rooster can become aggressive with other roosters, although they seldom become aggressive with people.
Keep roosters separated unless they are raised together and even so, watch for signs of fighting and aggression once the roos reach puberty at 4 or 5 months of age.
You may also find these related rooster articles helpful.