When you are building a productive flock of chickens, you want to make sure you have all the bases covered. Roosters may not seem necessary, but they do have essential roles within the flock. Yet, how do you know which breed of rooster to choose? There are many types of roosters out there, but today we are going to introduce you to the 12 best, as well as to some tips on how to select a breed for your backyard or farm.
Let’s get started.
12 Types of Roosters
The following list contains breeds of roosters that will add something to almost every flock. Each of these roosters has low levels of aggression, so they will protect your ladies without causing any mayhem.
1. Brahma Rooster
Large and glorious, the Brahma breed is often called the King of Chickens. Until the creation of the Jersey Giant, the Brahma was the largest breed around. Although Brahma roosters can be somewhat intimidating, they are not aggressive. In fact, they are very docile. Their size, however, will prevent small, curious predators from skulking around the chicken run. Furthermore, Brahma roosters are very protective of their hens.
Do keep in mind that, regardless of their size, Brahma chickens do get picked on by those with more dominant attitudes. If you plan on keeping a Brahma rooster, you are going to need a flock of quieter hens to curtail any squabbling.
2. Welsummer Rooster
Here is another good looking backyard rooster. Welsummer chickens are stunning, be they male or female. Their long tail feathers, bright red combs and wattles, and vibrant coloring make them the focal point of the yard. Fascinatingly, the Welsummer breed has only been around for about a century. They were developed during the post-WWI era in the Netherlands, and they have been popular ever since.
Happy to forage and protect the flock with earnestness, the Welsummer rooster is no pushover. Yet, despite holding their own within the pecking order, a Welsummer rooster will be docile and amicable. Expect them to giddily eat from your hand.
The only downside is that Welsummer chickens — hens and roosters — are very noisy.
3. Faverolles Rooster
Do you want a colorful rooster who struts his stuff around the yard? Look no further than the Faverolles. The Faverolles is often considered one of the greatest French breeds in existence, and it is a mixture of Houdan, French Rennes, Malines, Dorking, Flemish Cuckoo, and Brahma bloodlines. In short, this is a high quality rooster with a unique look.
Faverolles roosters have compact bodies, beards, five toes, and a single red comb. Their fluffy appearance may make them cute, but they are also very curious, adaptable, and full of energy. Faverolles roosters are incredible guardians, too. You can trust in them to keep the ladies safe during their daily roam around the yard.
4. Plymouth Rock Rooster
The Plymouth Rock breed has been a long-standing favorite among chicken owners. These roosters are hard working and vigilant. They know how to play the escort for the hens, and they stay calm even when things get a bit chaotic. It helps that Plymouth Rock roosters can weigh around 9-9.5 pounds. Their long, broad bodies and black and white barring gives them an intimidating look, but they are truly sweethearts. Especially around their caretakers.
One thing you have to keep in mind when raising Plymouth Rock roosters is the size of their combs and wattles. They are larger, so they need to be protected during the bitterly cold months.
Otherwise, the Plymouth Rock rooster is a solid choice for your flock.
5. Rhode Island Red Rooster
When you have a flock full of surly hens with loads of personality, you do not want a docile rooster. Enter the Rhode Island Red. Yes, they do have a bit of a reputation for being pushy. They will escalate situations rather than walk away. In other words, if something messes with the flock, you can expect a Rhode Island Red rooster to lay it all on the line to protect the ladies.
During mating season, Rhode Island Red roosters will not tolerate much around the hens. Children should maintain a safe distance from them.
However, if you get your rooster as a chick, handle and socialize them, they tend to be more agreeable later on in life.
6. Polish Rooster
Known for their wild crests, the Polish rooster is a common sight in many backyards throughout North American, Europe, and the UK. The roosters have a punkish appearance that makes them all the more dominant in the backyard. The issue with all those spiky feathers on their head is that they get in the way of eyesight. Your Polish roosters will not be as alert as other breeds, so choose this breed if you have a large run and keep your flock contained within.
Polish roosters are also best suited for flocks full of smaller, mild-mannered hens. Pairing them up with more aggressive breeds, like the Rhode Island Red, is not recommended.
7. Silkie Rooster
Do you want a fluffy rooster walking around? Then you are going to love Silkies. There is not a single aggressive bone in a Silkie’s body; these are incredibly calm and docile birds who will even sit on your lap. However, that does not make Silkie roosters pushovers. They are very attentive, guiding the flock around the run or the yard. Should they sense danger, Silkie roosters will raise an adequate alarm. Of course, being that Silkies are on the smaller side, you should not expect them to fight off predators.
8. Langshan Rooster
A gentle giant of the chicken world, the Langshan is an old breed hailing from China. Their name comes from the Langshan District along the Yangtze River. Unfortunately, they are not a very common breed these days. If you get a rooster for your flock, you will be supporting the conservancy effort.
There are four different kinds of Langshans — short-leg variety, modern Langshans, German Langshans, and Croad Langshans. Each one looks unique, but their temperament is more or less the same.
Langshan roosters do not have any flying ability, but that does not mean they are weak. Since they are so large, they scare away small predators, including birds of prey. Langshan chickens also run incredibly fast and can jump quite high. They are not a rooster you want to mess with.
9. Sebright Rooster
Known for being a small guy with a huge personality, the Sebright rooster is bound to be a welcome addition to your flock. This is one type of rooster that will be up early and go to bed late in order to keep an eye on the hens. One warning: Because they are so protective of their offspring and hens, you need to actively train Sebright roosters not to attack.
This may sound like a huge disadvantage, but only if you do not devote time to them. So long as you socialize your Sebright, they will be a problem for predators, not you. On the flip side, their possessiveness is useful when you have your flock roaming the yard freely.
In this video, you can also see how small and cute these roosters look:
10. Orpington Rooster
The Orpington breed is known for two things: their fluffiness and their gentleness. You can expect the same from the Orpington roosters. Despite that, the rooster is a wonderful escort for hens. They tend to be laid back, almost carefree in how they go about their day, but they are also watchful of the flock. They are friendly enough to eat from your hand, yet they will not bother until the hens have gotten their fair share.
Overall, they are a pleasant addition to the yard. Orpingtons sound the alarm when necessary, and they are brave enough to face down dangerous predators. As such, they are a favorite for small backyards.
11. Barbu D’Uccle Rooster
The Barbu D’Uccle breed may be considered pint-sized, but what they lack in stature, they make up for it with attitude. Barbu D’Uccle roosters have been known to stand up to much larger roosters when defending their flock; and many of them win. Handsome to look at and very attentive, these are the lads you want looking over your flock as the hens free range.
Furthermore, they will lead the hens around the yard, finding them things to peck before raising the alarm if something threatening gets too close.
The only time a Barbu D’Uccle rooster may be troublesome is when breeding season comes around. These roosters will become rather territorial, and there is not much you can do about it. However, this season is short, and they settle right back into their normal ways once they have sown their oats.
12. Cochin Rooster
There are some breeds of chicken who will hop into your lap and plop down as if they were a cat or dog. Well, one of those types of roosters is the Cochin. They are among the friendliest chickens out there. You could even go as far as to call them “house roosters.”
Of course, their gregariousness does not detract from their ability to keep watch over the flock. No, when these boys have a job to do, they do it with vigor. They are perfectly suited to the job of watchdog, but they also appreciate a pat from their humans here and there. It keeps them motivated.
The downside to their almost dog-like nature is that it sometimes prevents them from being intimidating or even assertive. Cochin roosters are guardians — but only when the yard is not open to attack. Choose this breed of rooster if you want a companion who will keep watch from the safety of the chicken run.
How to Pick the Right Breed For Your Flock
Now that you have seen some of the different types of rooster out there, you may be wondering, “How do I choose the best one?”
It depends on your goals. If you want to sire a new generation of chickens for your yard, you are going to want a rooster with specific traits. For example, if you want dual purpose chickens, then you need a rooster with plenty of meat and a good temperament. Do you plan on using your rooster for meat once he reaches advanced age? Then you probably want to avoid smaller roosters, like the Sebright.
The one thing you do not want to do is select a mean breed. Aggressive roosters — sometimes called game roosters — will be problematic. They may attack you, other roosters, and even the hens. Therefore, select a breed that is known to be friendly but watchful. Attentive breeds will prevent predators from plucking the chicks or hens out from under your nose.
Lastly, if you have neighbors close by, avoid the noisy breeds. Some roosters are known for being louder and more active with their crowing.
Final Thoughts on the Best Breeds of Rooster
If you are looking at the different types of roosters because you want one for your flock, any of the 12 on this list will do well. Not all roosters are cut out to be protectors, so make sure you are choosing non-aggressive yet protective breeds, like the Rhode Island Red or Orpington. If you want a family pet with some pluck, the Barbu D’Uccle is an excellent choice. So which one are you going to pick?
Valerie has been content writing since 2016 for websites and companies all around the world. A traveler, dancer, martial artist, Valerie loves gathering experiences and wisdom. Her travels have taken her to over 20 countries, and she hopes to see more of the world soon.