According to this answer,

Dumbledore knew that a Basilisk was the source of the petrifactions in the school.

My simple question

If we take every fact mentioned in the series to be true, then the mere crowing of a rooster is fatal to the Basilisk.

.. And the Basilisk flees only from the crowing of the rooster, which is fatal to it.
The Chamber of Secrets

This was in a library book.

So why didn't he station hundreds of roosters in the school and see to their protection?

If a couple of roosters near Hagrid were a threat, surely hundreds in the school would get the job done? Even Riddle would find it hard to eliminate so many of them quicky enough to save the Basilisk.

Hope my question is the first to raise the issue, and not a duplicate!

EDIT: I've taken the quoted quote to mean that the crowing of the rooster has the potential to kill the Basilisk if it doesn't get away quickly enough. Feel free to correct me if my interpretation is wrong!

  • 6
    I think the premise that Dumbledore knew exactly what he had to deal with is ..very shaky at best. Thus, highly speculative and opinion-based question.
    – Annatar
    Aug 7, 2017 at 13:50
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    @Annatar Have you checked the link in my question? It makes a case for the fact that Dumbledore knew that the culprit was the Basilisk. The general consensus, too, seemed to be that. Plus, my previous question on whether Dumbledore didn't know what the monster was got closed. Aug 7, 2017 at 14:03
  • @HarryWeasley I did check, and no, there was no real consensus. The comments with the highest votes (except the one from the OP) do disagree with the "Dumbledore-knew" theory.
    – Annatar
    Aug 7, 2017 at 14:10
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    @HarryWeasley Unfortunately, many people tend to blindly vote for accepted answers.. (and the comment ironically rather points to Dumbledore not suspecting the basilisk) (and that was all that people had to work with, so I don't even blame them for upvoting - the answer is not BAD at all, just one of two concurring theories, and noone posted an answer containing the other one, giving the false impression that there shouldn't be any doubt about this one)
    – Annatar
    Aug 7, 2017 at 14:28
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    the linked answer is ...questionable...in my opinion. I don't believe Dumbledore knew what was behind the attacks, but that somehow Vold was involved. He certainly didn't believe Hagrid and Aragog were the culprits, so if he had any idea that there was a basilisk around, I doubt he would have let it ride, as a teacher at the time, and certainly not as headmaster
    – NKCampbell
    Aug 8, 2017 at 21:48

3 Answers 3


He didn't have any Roosters, though Hagrid tried to keep some around

Hagrid had a chicken coop and a number of roosters by his hut. However, over the course of that school year, Ginevra Weasley, under the influence of the Diary Horcrux, snuck into the coop and killed the roosters, one by one, thereby preventing them from being used as a weapon against the Basilisk.

Of course, that's not to say they didn't try to keep the Roosters from being killed.

“Second one killed this term,” he explained.
“It’s either foxes or a Blood-Suckin’ Bugbear, an’ I need the headmaster’s permission ter put a charm around the hen coop.”

Harry Potter & The Chamber Of Secrets - Chapter 11: The Dueling Club

But clearly, if any charms were put in place, they were easily circumvented by the Voldemort-controlled Ginny, as roosters continued to be killed later on.

Before Dumbledore could speak another word, however, the door of the office flew open with an almighty bang and Hagrid burst in, a wild look in his eyes, his balaclava perched on top of his shaggy black head and the dead rooster still swinging from his hand.

Harry Potter & The Chamber Of Secrets - Chapter 12: The Polyjuice Potion

The fact that the roosters were killed because of the Basilisk was even alluded to when Harry reads from the excerpt Hermione had in her hand.

“. . . The crowing of the rooster . . . is fatal to it!” he read aloud. “Hagrid’s roosters were killed!

Harry Potter & The Chamber Of Secrets - Chapter 16: The Chamber Of Secrets

So the answer is, he was possibly planning to, but the roosters were killed.

  • -1. D was a teacher of transfiguration. Or i am missing sthg? Mybe you capitalising 'the roosters' means there was a family called 'the Roosters' with abilities to fight Basilisks and Ginny as TR slaughtered all of them?
    – user68762
    Aug 7, 2017 at 14:49
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    sorry for not being clear. What i meant is that Dumbledore was a teacher of transfiguration in the past, therefore transfiguring a few roosters from his beloved lemon drops probably wouldn't have been a big challenge for him.
    – user68762
    Aug 7, 2017 at 15:12
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    Whether or not that would even work is discussed here. Aug 7, 2017 at 15:14
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    let's say a 'fake' one wouldn't work (tho i still maintain Draco Malfoy would have made an excellent rooster) but you think it'd have stopped someone like D? If D had wanted roosters, he'd get some, by ordering from Hogsmeade or from any farmhouse
    – user68762
    Aug 7, 2017 at 15:18
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    Does it especially matter why they were there to begin with? Point is, Dumbledore had access to roosters until they were killed. Aug 9, 2017 at 8:43

maybe Dumbledore never figured out the identity of the Slytherin's monster

In the books there is no mention of Dumbledore figuring out that the monster was in fact a Basilisk. It is therefore possible that Dumbledore never realised that he should put a hundred roosters in the castle.


One explanation is that Dumbledore simply didn't think of it. I certainly didn't, and wizards are used to getting what they want with spells. They don't have the scientific method, they don't think like muggles, etc. See Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality (fan-fiction).

Another possibility is that Dumbledore wanted Harry to figure it out so he could get closer to defeating Voldemort. This is probably not what he had in mind, but it is possible.

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