I am utterly ignorant about chickens and could really do with some pointers. Really hope I don't drop a clanger like I did in the doghouse 4 years ago and have never really recovered
We live in a rural area, in a small row of local authority housing. Neighbours have chickens (fresh eggs - lovely) and a cockerel that announces his presence from dawn til dusk. It's keeping us all up (2 DCs under 3).
As it's a rural area do I just need to suck it up? We have cows, horses and sheep in neighbouring fields and lots of tractors trundling up and down the road, so lots of noise every day, but it's the incessant repetitiveness that is driving me round the bend.
We have hens but no cockerel , you don't need a cockerel to have eggs only to have chicks IYSWIM. I wouldn't have one precisely because it is unfair on the neighbours . Have you spoken to the neighbours , it must annoy them too. If you are in housing association housing I would approach them , I would point out that you have no problem with the hens just the cockerel.
ex environmental health officer here. sweet is right. noise from a cockerel can be a statutory nuisance in the same way that noise from a dog, a disco or whatever can be. have dealt with noisy cockerels in the past. the only way to stop them crowing is to restrict them being able to stretch their necks. at night they have to be put into either a crate, cage or animal carrier to stop them doing this. Something that doesnt restrict their head height ie just touching or just above the comb. Have served notices and made owners do this but it is a real faff and all of them did it for a couple of months before moving the cockerel on. no you dont have to suck it up but speak to your env health dept and see how sympathetic they are. speak to your neighbour. why do they have a cockerel? are they intending to breed? can they move him further away from your house. would they put him in a carrying case at night? all worth a try but you will have to sit down with them and talk about it.
Just shutting them up in a house would help because if they're in an enclosed house the noise won't be able to get out as easily (speaking from having had a cockerel as a pet with some hens in the past)
I had this problem with an ex-neighbour. Made worse by us working shifts (though even a normal 9-5 household would probably grudge being woken at 4am - and being kept awake). The lack of sleep made us both ill.
I had no luck with EH and gave up after my initial complaint. However, another neighbour (I assume) complained and ex-neighbour eventually moved them all on. The place was a huge mess with him, stunk to high heaven, rats visiting nightly (and in the day sometimes - and I believe it's rare to actually see a rat in the day). The birds probably had less room than caged hens and the ducks had no where to have a splash. He made a fortune selling his "free range" eggs around the village. If only people had seen the conditions his birds were kept in!
I hope you get some peace. I love hens but if I had my way would ban cockerels from residential areas, rural or not.