A No Crow Collar Reduces Rooster Crowing Volume
You Can't Change Rooster Behavior, But These 8 Tips Will Help You Reduce the Annoyance of Crowing
Some people love to hear a rooster crowing. Others complain so vociferously you’d think they were talking about a barking dog. The former are usually backyard chicken keepers, the latter invariably are the neighbors. So what can you do to keep your crowing rooster from bothering neighbors? Here are eight possible strategies, including a no crow collar.
1. Insulate your chicken coop and surround it with lush trees. That won’t stop the rooster from crowing, but it will help muffle the sound.
2. Shutter the coop’s windows at night. A porch light, or headlights from passing vehicles, shining through the coop window can trigger a round of crowing. Shutters will block the outside light. An alternative is to orient coop windows away from outside light sources.
3. Leave the coop light on all night. Keeping the light on will minimize disturbances from outside lights, but is not the best plan. Like us humans, chickens need lights-out for nighttime rest, so reserve this one as a temporary measure.
4. Turn on a radio. Sudden sounds, such as a dog barking or someone rattling a garbage can lid, can trigger crowing. A softly playing radio provides a constant flow of overnight sounds, minimizing a rooster’s reaction to outside noises.
5. Keep your chickens in until late morning. Early morning crowing inside the coop is less likely to bother neighbors than crows coming from the yard. Later, when neighbors are out and about, they’re less likely to notice crowing than they would while lying in bed.
6. Put the rooster in a box overnight. Since a cock stretches his neck to crow, a box small enough to prevent a good stretch will discourage crowing. Make sure the box is well ventilated. A low cage works just as well, especially if it’s covered to keep out light.
7. Bring the rooster indoors overnight. Tucking a boxed or caged rooster into your laundry room, spare bathroom or basement will keep the sound of any overnight crowing from reaching the neighbors. Of course, it might disturb your sleep, but hey! — it’s your rooster that’s crowing.
8. Try a No Crow Collar. A Velcro-fastened No Crow Collar limits the amount of air a rooster can expel while crowing. It doesn’t eliminate crowing altogether, but it does reduce the volume. You’ll need to make sure the collar is not so tight it strangles the bird, and that your coop is free of protrusions to snag the collar.
No single method will keep a rooster from crowing at night 100 percent of the time and he will crow periodically throughout the day. And some cranky neighbors may complain no matter how hard you try to minimize the disturbance. In that case, you have two options. The sad one is to get rid of the rooster.
The happy one is to move to a rooster-friendly neighborhood — which is what I did. I don’t complain about the neighbors’ braying donkey and bellowing cows, and they don’t complain about my crowing cocks. Everyone is happy, including the roosters.
What strategies do you use to reduce the annoyance of a rooster crowing?
Originally published in 2015 and regularly vetted for accuracy.