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I am looking for some advice about cockerels. We have hatched three cream legbar chicks and at least one, maybe two are cockerels. The plan was to humanely kill any cockerels and keep the pullets. Now they are here and my children have fallen in love with them we are having second thoughts. Has anyone successfully kept cockerels in an urban area? Our house is detached but we have several near neighbours. It’s possible we could keep a bachelor group in the front garden. I thought if I kept them shut in their coop until a reasonable hour they might be ok. Or do people generally complain whatever time they crow?

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It totally depends on your neighbours.

I live in a medium sized town - I live in a detached property with a fair sized garden but we do have near neighbours.

We kept a bantam cockerel for about 6 months after hatching. By the end he was crowing inside the closed Eglu Cube at around 5 in the morning even though it was winter and still pitch black then. We never intended to keep him because the crowing woke us up and drove my partner mad, but because I knew he’d be with us a while I went around to all the neighbours and explained it would only be for a few weeks. They all said they either hadn’t heard him or didn’t mind. I don’t know whether that would have been the case if he had stayed long term.

He certainly didn’t crow constantly, but would always crow before daybreak, and then a few times at random during the day.

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Setting aside the noise issues, having two cockerels will probably result in a fight when they reach maturity. We took a cockerel in under just those circumstances. He was the loser and was in a bit of a state, despite the owner having cleaned him up and kept him separate for two weeks. He's fine now though.

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The lady I got my chicks from had a lot of cockerels, and when we went to pick the chicks up, as soon as we got out of the car, all you heard was cock-a-doodle-doo.

It was pretty noisy and she lived in a built up area.

I'm not sure her neighbours had much choice but to put up with the noise.

One had complained but when the council came the cockerels happened to be quiet and the neighbouring dogs were noisy at that point, so the council told her not to worry.

She said another neighbour was getting triple glazing.

That said, I have been to National Trust places before and have never heard a peep out of the Pekin cockerels they seem to have.


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We got our first Cockerel accidentally when Phillipa became Phillip.  For years I tried to keep him quiet taking him in at night etc.  Then he died.  The neighbours complained!  They loved to hear him.  So I’ve had rescue cockerels ever since.  I wouldn’t recommend two though as they compete to be the noisiest.  And need a ratio of 1:8 minimum and their own space usually. I have used a Cockerel rehoming site successfully when one lost all his ladies to old age.  That was HPG Cockerel Rehome.  But generally rehoming is difficult.  Better to let them live a happy life for 5 months or so, then dispatch them for Sunday dinner or a bbq.  That’s the solution of several people I know.  It’s the cycle of life.  

Edited by Patricia W
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