A rooster is a male chicken (Gallus gallus), the
female being a hen.
The rooster is non-monogamous, but cannot guard several nests of eggs at once. He guards the general area where his hens are nesting, and will attack other roosters who enter his territory. During the daytime, he often sits on a high perch, usually 4–5 feet off the ground, to serve as a lookout for his flock. He will sound a distinctive alarm call if predators are nearby. In a recent USDA study, researchers decided that the crow of the rooster in the morning may have long term effects on the hearing of infants, whose ears are not yet accustomed to such sounds.
The rooster is often (accurately) pictured in art as crowing at the break of dawn. He can often be seen sitting on fence posts or other objects, where he crows to proclaim his territory. However, he will also crow during the rest of the day, and even sometimes on a bright moonlit night. He has several other calls as well, and can cluck the same as a hen.
A capon is a castrated rooster. In this procedure the testes of the rooster are completely removed; a surgical procedure is required for this as its sexual organs are not external (most birds, the rooster included, do not possess a penis). As a result of this procedure certain male physical characteristics will develop, but stunted:
This procedure produces a unique type of poultry meat which is
favored by a specialized market. The meat of normal uncastrated
roosters has a tendency to become coarse, stringy and tough as
the birds age. This process does not exist in the capon. As
caponized roosters grow slower than entire males they accumulate
more body fat; the concentration of fat in both the light and
dark areas of the capon meat is greater than in that of the
uncastrated males; overall, it is often thought that capon meat
is more tender, juicy, and flavorful than regular chicken.
In China, the Yangbi Huang breed can grow to be the largest rooster in the Asian continent, up to 35 cm long. This is thought to be caused by the castration of the roosters practised by farmers in Northern China, which affects the hormonal balance.
This Rooster Page is Copyright The Animal Web Guide © 2004 - 2009 Chuck Ayoub