We have a group of thirteen 5-day old chicks of the following breeds: 3 buff orpingtons and 2 blue cochins, white crested black polish, black australorps, silver grey dorkings, and black langshans.
After doing some reading and watching youtube videos on how to sex baby chicks, we decided to try some of the methods and document whether or not they were accurate. We couldnt do the "examine the genitalia" method because they were 4 days old when we got them, but we are testing the following methods:
1. The "wing test": if the feathers at the wing tip are all the same length, it's a roo; if they alternate long-short-long-short, it's a pullet.
2. In one youtube video, it says that if you flip a baby chick on its back and it pulls it's legs into its body, it's a pullet, but if it sticks one or both legs out, it's a roo (for what it's worth, all but one hugged its legs into its body the day we got them, when they were 3 to 4 days old, but the next day (yesterday, day 5), most of them stuck their legs out if they were alert, and pulled them in if they were falling asleep... so we highly doubt whether there is any merit to this test!
3. Wing and tail development: contrary to what one might expect, pullets are supposed to have better developed wing and tail feathers than roos
4. Specific markings: this was specific to some breeds and is described in each case.
We plan to take pictures every week until it is clear whether they are pullets or roos to determine how accurate the measures are.
We would also welcome any input from people with experience sexing chicks!
I will post the 5-day old pictures of each breed in separate posts below. Feel free to weigh in on what you think they are!
And FWIW, if the tests above are correct, we reallllly lucked out, because they are saying we have 11 pullets for sure, and possibly 12, with only 1 roo - a blue cochin, and from what I've read, they are awesome roosters.
Happy admirer of the best rooster ever - Maestro, an Euskal Oiloa - and three commercial laying hens, Sophia (white leghorn), Chicken Nugget and Henny Penny (golden comets)... and most recently, 13 new baby chicks (3 buff orpingtons, 2 blue cochins, 2 white crested black polish, 2 black australorps, 2 silver grey dorkings, and 2 black langshans).