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At what age can you feel/see spurs?

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 

I have 3 EEs that I hatched out on 2/14 (I guess that makes them about 3wks).  I was sure that two were pullets as they started showing tails and wing feathers more quickly than the third. However, it looks like those two are developing what looks like hackle feathers (please don't be more roos!).  I decided to feel their legs, and on all 3 I can feel a teeny-tiny bump (size of a grain of sand or so) where spurs would be. I don't know how scientific this is on my part, and I know some pics would be more helpful (and I'll get some up here) but can spur development be detected @ 3wks?

 

Thanks,

 

Wade

post #2 of 8

The answer is no.  Spurs are the last thing to develop in most roos (in fact they'll start mounting hens before you see spur growth). 

 

All chickens have the spur nub, and in fact, some hens even develop spurs too.  It's very unreliable.

 

With EE's it's more reliable to look at coloration (your pics will help when they're up).  Red patchiness on the shoulders is a sign of a roo.

"It's easy. You draw a red line on the ground, right? Then you wait for a chicken to come along. When he arrives, he puts his beak right on the line and he's hypnotized!"
Joey Santiago
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"It's easy. You draw a red line on the ground, right? Then you wait for a chicken to come along. When he arrives, he puts his beak right on the line and he's hypnotized!"
Joey Santiago
Reply
post #3 of 8

i have an old english game bantam thats almost a year old and his spurs have yet to really start to develop. also all chicks will have spur bumps which makes it highly unreliable in sexing, and since some hens can develop spurs as well i would say the development of spurs can in no way determin the sex of a chicken.

 

hackle and saddle development wont happen till at least 3-4 months of age when they start to get their adult feathers in and lose their first baby feathers.

 

do you have any pics of them that you can post and some of us can guess but as far as gender goes its best to wait till they are 6+ weeks old for accurate guesses and even then chicks can fool us.

owner of Itty Bitty Dowden Family Farm: https://www.facebook.com/#!/IttyBittyDowdenFamilyFarm

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owner of Itty Bitty Dowden Family Farm: https://www.facebook.com/#!/IttyBittyDowdenFamilyFarm

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post #4 of 8
Thread Starter 

Here they are.  The first one is the runt, and was the last to start developing tail and wing feathers. The 2nd and 3rd are my "fluffy-faces".  I REALLY hope they're pullets. The one in the 3rd pic is a little unsure about being placed in the grass by itself, hence the strange stance.  Weather has been a bit too cool here to get them out yet.

 

 

 

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post #5 of 8
Thread Starter 

Glad to hear that feeling for spur bumps isn't accurate!

 

 

So these guys are 3wks (and 2 days)...... Possible to tell if they're guys or gals yet?  

 

 

Thanks,

 

Wade

post #6 of 8

So far it looks like two females (the brown ones) and one male (white one).  However, watch the top brown one, those legs are awefully thick, and that is a really red chest.

"It's easy. You draw a red line on the ground, right? Then you wait for a chicken to come along. When he arrives, he puts his beak right on the line and he's hypnotized!"
Joey Santiago
Reply
"It's easy. You draw a red line on the ground, right? Then you wait for a chicken to come along. When he arrives, he puts his beak right on the line and he's hypnotized!"
Joey Santiago
Reply
post #7 of 8
Thread Starter 

Thanks pele. As much luck as I seem to have with roos, I really need to learn (and get up the nerve) to butcher my own!  ;-)

 

Funny you mention hens with spurs - My mom has a hen (looks like a NH Red) that has some impressive spurs.  I had never noticed it until a year or so ago. She's probably 6-8yrs old.

 

 

Wade

post #8 of 8
Great info I felt the legs on my four chicks today and all had little bumps. They are about a month old now. I dont need 4 more roos
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