Introducing Rollers into the Breeding Cage - Cockbird or Hen, which one first?
Our Rollers are brought into breeding condition before the commencement of each breeding season. The question often arises next as to which one to cage first into the breeding box - the cock or the hen.
Provided both are well prepared I believe there is little or no difference. Even so there are many large breeders that cage the cock first and I have to admit that I am one of these. Why is this?
In the first place we know that on average it will take the male ten days more than the female to come into breeding condition. Thus we can advance the conditions (lighting, temperature, seed selection) that will advance the male specifically. Once in the breeding cage for five days you can place some hens in contest cages in front of him. This will encourage the male even further as you can readily hear.
Another benefit is that after a number of days the male has begun to regard the breeding cage as his territory and will if necessary defend it. This means that when a hen is placed with him after the ten days, the male will be usually dominant over the hen and the latter will submit and subsequent pairing will take place. On the other hand if the hen is the first to be introduced to the breeding cage the opposite is likely to happen and the hen will be dominant over the cock resulting in a greater likelihood of unsuccessful fertilization.
This is the reason why most breeders prefer placing the cock first into the breeding cage.
Success in your breeding - Wout van Gils