Roosters are most often known for their distinctive crowing. Unfortunately, roosters don't just crow at sunrise and stop for the rest of the day. Roosters can be noisy and disruptive, which may lead to problems if you are trying to keep your birds in an area where you have neighbors. You cannot force a rooster to be silent but there are steps you can take to try to keep the chicken coop noise level to a minimum.
Understanding Why Roosters Crow
Your rooster's natural instincts are to protect his flock. His crow is his way of communicating with his hens. He may crow when sounding an alarm if something in the environment changes or if he has identified a potential threat such as a predator. It is important to remember that not all roosters will crow at the same things or even at the same time of day. Some roosters may seem to be noisier than others, which is most likely due to the individual bird's personality.
If you want to cut down on the amount of crowing your rooster does, you should pay attention to when your rooster crows and why he crows. If you can identify the stimuli that is prompting your rooster to crow, you may be able to eliminate it from his environment and therefore cut down on the crowing.
Manage Your Rooster's Environment
Roosters who live inside an enclosed coop are less likely to feel threatened than those who are out in the world. Limiting your rooster's environment can help keep him quiet, especially at night.
- Roosters tend to crow due to changes in light. If your rooster is noisy at night, consider darkening the coop by covering the lights or windows. You also can try leaving the lights inside the coop on all night. Either way, the less changes in light your rooster experiences, the less likely he will be to make a lot of noise about them.
- If your rooster seems to be bothered or alarmed by noises in the area, you can try playing a radio on low in the coop to mask the sound of outside noises that might startle your bird into crowing.
- If other methods don't work, try putting your rooster in a small box or cage that will not allow him to fully extend his neck and therefore discourage him from crowing. Make sure the box or cage is well ventilated. The box may be be more effective if you also keep it in a dark or otherwise light-restricted area.
Keep Your Flock Small
Big flocks of chickens tend to be noisier than small flocks, especially if you have multiple roosters. Roosters regularly establish dominance over one another and crowing is part of the way they communicate with other roosters and hens. If you limit the number of roosters you have in your flock, you will limit the noise level.
Jen Davis has been writing since 2004. She has served as a newspaper reporter and her freelance articles have appeared in magazines such as "Horses Incorporated," "The Paisley Pony" and "Alabama Living." Davis earned her Bachelor of Arts in communication with a concentration in journalism from Berry College in Rome, Ga.