Like their Chilean relatives, they are beautiful birds that lay stunning blue eggs, the Araucanas. Ameraucanas developed into an accepted pure breed after breeders successfully removed the lethal gene carried by the Araucanas. When you plan to include new chickens into your backyard flock, it’s wise to consider their sociability. Can Ameraucanas get along well with other chickens?
Backyard chicken keepers agree that Ameraucanas have sweet and docile natures and get along well with other chickens. Some lines like the Wheaten and Blue Wheaten are notoriously friendly to people and sometimes submissive to other birds. Individual temperaments can vary depending on circumstances.
These chickens are a sought-after breed because of their beautiful blue eggs, pretty patterns, and docile nature. In the 1970s, many breeders tried to get their versions of the blue-egg-laying Araucana standardized by the APA while attempting to rid them of the lethal gene. The APA finally acknowledged the Ameraucana as an authentic breed in 1984.
Can Ameraucanas Get Along Well With Other Chickens?
Backyard chicken keepers mostly concur that Ameraucanas are a good-natured bunch of fowls. There will always be mean and nasty individuals in the general population, but all breeds are true. So let’s get to know the Ameraucanas a little.
The Temperament Of An Ameraucana Chicken
The Ameraucana has bay red eyes, making it look rather fierce, but this is a bit deceiving because they are generally calm birds. In addition, most chicken keepers report their Ameraucanas to have reasonable social skills, which allows them to fit in with a mixed flock.
As far as people go, Ameraucanas seem to be friendly but don’t always enjoy too much cuddling, but they are also not too flighty. The ladies can occasionally get a little broody, but not excessively so. The hen will usually be a good, protective mother when it does happen.
Are Ameraucana Roosters Aggressive?
Aside from individual variation in temperament, most Ameraucana chicken keepers state that roosters are generally not very aggressive.
But the rooster exists to protect his flock and to preserve his genes. So when he perceives a threat to his ability to perform his functions, a rooster could become aggressive.
Hormones, heredity, breed, and individual personality help determine which males will become aggressive roosters.
- If the ancestors were bred for fighting, genetics could still be present and make the bird aggressive.
- Chickens are prey to many predators, making them naturally suspicious of anything that could be a potential threat to their existence. Survival of the flock is crucial.
- A rooster’s personality doesn’t always pair up with the description of the breed’s personality. A rooster from any species can become aggressive.
- Excess testosterone can change that sweet little chick into an aggressive and angry bird when a cockerel reaches puberty.
Unfortunately, if a rooster develops aggressive tendencies, there is not much you can do to fix this. No amount of handling, giving treats, or affection will be able to overcome the hormones, genetics, personality, and instincts that cause the aggressive behavior.
You can also not raise a cockerel not to be an aggressive adult.
With a lot of hard work, the chicken keeper may convince the aggressive chicken that they are not a threat, but the rooster will not apply that to anyone or anything besides the keeper. Other people and chickens could still be at risk. Being angry or violent towards the offending rooster is never appropriate or acceptable.
Where The Ameraucana Is In The Pecking Order
The Ameraucana breed finds itself more or less in the middle of the pecking order. This term is more than a cliché. It is a complex system whereby chickens arrange their social status within the flock. The highest-ranked chickens will get the best of everything, including roosts, food, and water. The lower-ranked ones will get the remainders.
There are three social hierarchies within any flock:
- Roosters to roosters.
- Hens to hens.
- Roosters to hens.
The pecking order is a fluid thing. A lower-ranked rooster could go up against the lead male; if he wins, he would be the next chicken-in-command. Weak and sickly chickens also get moved down the ladder, encouraging the survival of the fittest.
Although Ameraucana chickens are in the middle of the pecking order, reviews confirm that they still get along with other birds in the flock.
How To Integrate Ameraucanas Into Your Flock
Combining different breeds to create a mixed flock of chickens for your backyard coop is possible. But you may also want to research the typical natures of the species you mean to combine.
Some are docile and sweet-natured, while others may be domineering. A mixed flock will be easier to manage if your chickens aren’t polar opposites.
So, you’ve decided to add some Ameraucanas to your existing flock. This should not be too stressful because of their pleasant dispositions. You can easily integrate them into your pre-existing group using the “playpen method.”
What Is The Playpen Method?
The existing flock, especially those high up in the pecking order, need to get used to the newbies. An easy way to do this is to create a confinement area for the new birds within the coop or wherever the flock is free-ranging.
The chickens can see and hear each other but can’t have physical contact. The newbies must have plenty of food and water inside their playpen.
You can keep your newbies in the playpen for about a week, allowing the other birds to mill around and get used to seeing and hearing them. Then make an opening so the Ameraucanas can come out when they are ready.
Initially, they will probably stay close to the enclosure, but they will soon settle and start mingling. If any other birds become hostile, you should return the newbie to the playpen for approximately another week. They should then integrate well with the flock.
Ameraucanas are a docile and friendly breed of chickens, reportedly getting along well with a mixed flock on most occasions. Generally, people have not found the rooster or the hens to be very aggressive.
But there will always be those grumpy, anti-social “so-and-sos” amongst any breed, and there’s not much you can do about it. Be encouraged, though, because it doesn’t happen often.
When adding new birds to your flock, Ameraucanas, with their easy-going dispositions, should integrate well into the existing group.
Keeping them confined while in view and earshot of the other birds will help all concerned adjust to each other. Ameraucanas will be a great addition to your flock, and you will love collecting those glorious blue eggs every morning.