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3 week old chicks, studying back feather growth in BO and EE

post #1 of 5
Thread Starter 

Yikes, been wondering for a week or so on my 4 chicks.

Now it's becoming more obvious that 2 are different.  I have 2 BO and 2 EE.  One of each type has nice developed lower back strip of feathers (2 on right) and the other 2 do not (2 on left).  Also different in upper middle back feathers, shoulders, and front lapel.  maybe one looks more rumpled than the others as the feather growth patterns differ (BO on the blue towel).  What does this make them- male or female?

 

all had long feathers that covered their body length by d3-5 and tail feathers.  (they do seem to hold their tail feathers differently- more folded and less folded).  Legs similar,  EE definitely have tear drop shape, BO a little harder to tell.  One of each is def bigger than the other with slightly different comb development (week 1 for a BO).  head shape- maybe size difference or more fluff.

 

I think I will go with sex linked next time, this first timer is so nervous about getting a roo.

post #2 of 5
Feather sexing is completely innacurate unless you can absolutely certain the chick is offspring from a cross of fast feathering cock over slow feathering hen. I've seen a group of ten pullets exhibit ten different patterns of feather growth; it's almost never relevant to gender. At this age there's really no way to tell.
Edited by QueenMisha - 4/29/16 at 8:02pm

200 something birds. 8 species. ♥ Norman ♥ Norma ♥ Misha ♥ and ♥ Taylor ♥ are my babies.
Visit Norman the Rooster's Thread Here!
Breeding Sex Linked Silkies, Gamefowl, and EEs/OEs. Amateur genetics buff. Caponization practitioner/advocate.
Working at The Poultry Palace in Placerville, CA. Come see us for started pullets, chicks, Bar Ale feed, & more!

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200 something birds. 8 species. ♥ Norman ♥ Norma ♥ Misha ♥ and ♥ Taylor ♥ are my babies.
Visit Norman the Rooster's Thread Here!
Breeding Sex Linked Silkies, Gamefowl, and EEs/OEs. Amateur genetics buff. Caponization practitioner/advocate.
Working at The Poultry Palace in Placerville, CA. Come see us for started pullets, chicks, Bar Ale feed, & more!

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post #3 of 5

x2

 

Comb size and color is a much better indicator.

 

I must say, that your EE's both are exhibiting early signs of the "female" pattern....gold hackles with brown partridge back...so that looks promising.

 

Buff Orps can be more problematic...some pullets get spiky looking hackles, and the males often don't show secondary male feathers until later. The comb size should help.

 

Right now, it is too early, but nobody is screaming roo at this point.

 

And yes, sexlinks are the only way to know for certain that you've only got pullets.

 

LofMc

Keeper of 15+ layers, common to specialty types for colorful egg baskets. Brooding Queens: The Queen Mum Silkie and 2 Bantam Cochin handmaids. Preparing to breed my own Olive Eggers! Barnevelder roo with Splash Marans and CL for egg color and color coding :D Former 4H leader, GDB Puppy Raiser, Homeschooler. Current ESL tutor. Proud new grandma. Loving wife to a very tolerant husband.
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Keeper of 15+ layers, common to specialty types for colorful egg baskets. Brooding Queens: The Queen Mum Silkie and 2 Bantam Cochin handmaids. Preparing to breed my own Olive Eggers! Barnevelder roo with Splash Marans and CL for egg color and color coding :D Former 4H leader, GDB Puppy Raiser, Homeschooler. Current ESL tutor. Proud new grandma. Loving wife to a very tolerant husband.
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post #4 of 5

or you could buy laying hens or  point of lay pullets  - they cost more  but,  will be the sex you want

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post #5 of 5
Thread Starter 
Thanks. Backyard chickens.com is really a lot of fun to read and so many thoughts and ideas. Hours of fun, learning, then wondering if it's all going to go as planned. I'm 3 weeks in and many more hours and $$$.
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