3 week old chicks: Did I accidentally get 2 cockerels?

MorrisseyHens

Hatching
5 Years
Apr 12, 2014
3
0
7
Wisconsin
2 weeks ago we got 6 chicks from Tractor Supply. The sign said Amber pullets (I think that means Amberlink?). We figure the chicks are about 3 weeks old, assuming that the store really does get a new shipment of day old chicks every Monday (we bought the few they had left on a Sunday). The past couple days we have noticed 2 chicks that have much more pronounced combs. They extend further up onto their heads and are taller. No other real differences are noticed except perhaps some more aggressive behaviors (ie: pecking at our hand when we reach in, and jumping onto the other chicks and trying to chest bump them). I've heard that the chances of getting a cockerel from a feed store selling pullets is 1%. Is it possible that we got not only one but two?? Here are some pictures. #1 and #2 are of one of the suspected cockerels whose comb is much more pronounced but not different in color. #3 is one of the chicks with a smaller comb. Thanks for you help!



 

azelgin

Songster
12 Years
Jan 18, 2008
1,277
56
193
S.E. AZ
I believe that "Amberlink" would be a sex linked breed, therefore, the cockerels would be a totally different color, or marked pattern, from the pullets. That's the main reason the breeds are becoming popular. No roosters to deal with. It's more likely that the chicks just came from differing hatchery stock, with different characteristic form each other, not different sex.
The sexing on the other "traditional" breeds, runs about 90% accurate.
 
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WalkingOnSunshine

Crowing
11 Years
Apr 8, 2008
4,210
525
328
Ohio
Your 1% number is off. The chance of getting a cockerel in a hatchery-sexed batch is 10%. That being said, Amberlinks are a sex-linked hybrid and if your babies are white, they're female. Males are reddish.
 
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MorrisseyHens

Hatching
5 Years
Apr 12, 2014
3
0
7
Wisconsin
Thank you! Is there a difference between amberlink and amber white chickens? I assumed they were amberlink based on a google search but my partner thinks they're amber white. The sign when we bought them only said amber pullets. We are new to this and are not quite sure what it is that we got.
 

WalkingOnSunshine

Crowing
11 Years
Apr 8, 2008
4,210
525
328
Ohio
Thank you! Is there a difference between amberlink and amber white chickens? I assumed they were amberlink based on a google search but my partner thinks they're amber white. The sign when we bought them only said amber pullets. We are new to this and are not quite sure what it is that we got.

Amberlinks are a hybrid bird (not a breed, a fancy mutt) bred for large darker brown eggs and marketed to backyard breeders. They are a "reverse" sex link, where the females are white and the males are red at hatch.

Amberwhite is one name for a cross between a Rhode Island Red and Rhode Island White. I've heard this cross called other things, too.

I don't think you can tell by looking which they are. Your best bet would be to call the place where you bought them and ask what hatchery they got their chicks from. Then look at that hatchery's website and see what breed they sell that looks like your birds. You can also call them and ask what they sent to your store.
 

MorrisseyHens

Hatching
5 Years
Apr 12, 2014
3
0
7
Wisconsin
I wanted to post an update because my chicks are roughly 6 weeks old now and we can't help but think that two of them are cockerels. The one on the left with the bigger wattles tends to be louder and tougher than the one on the far right but those two are definitely different than the rest. Is it still too early to tell or is it safe to say that I've got two boys on my hands? (And if so, can they possibly live in harmony?)

Thank you

 

MANNA-PRO

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