A random mash of questions

Advertisement Purina Flock Layer


10 Years
Jul 31, 2009
Los Angeles, CA
Hey all, the small flock is doing very well, which is great news, but I have some questions...

I understand silkies are difficult to sex, but do thety follow the same feathering patterns as most other breeds? We ahve four, and the two largest are feathering the quickest. Are they just developing faster or is this a sex thing? What is the difference between body types of males or females? Also, the tiniest is only feathering on the wings, but has the most feet feathers, does this mean anything?

Also, is there such a thing as too much attention? I assume there is, but what would that be? I guess I'm just addicted!

I try to keep at 5-15 minutes per chicken at a time...but it can take a little bit before that calming them down! Does it make much of a difference if they...say fall asleep in a lap vs. a palm?

Our RIR roo is between 10 and 11 weeks old. He was our first chick, and by far the warmest to us as a baby. We now think we have to attribute this to him being cold and hungry when we first had him (wrong food, small light) so he was ATTATCHED to us. Since about 8 weeks, he's been more and more distant getting to the point of frightened of us. He (with a 7week old BO pullet) is in a temp coop and the 2 of them get to hang out in our backyard (we are in the burbs) for about 6 hours a day. It is a PAIN to catch him! He seems so scared now, is this a hormonal thing? Also, will this rub off on our Sweet B (the BO), because she is the sweetest and we don't want her to be like this. But, am I right to understand she might increase her skittishness for a few weeks, coming up in a few weeks?

SORRY for the wall of text, but I felt it was best to cover it all here instead of a million topics because they all seemed fairly general.

I agree, never chase them if you can avoid it; bribe them to come to you instead.

I know nothing about sexing silkies, except that it is pretty hard to do before they crow or lay.

RIR roos can be anything from lap pets to mean as snakes. Yours sounds like he is working his way to wanting to dominate you. Many here feel making pets of any roo when young encourages them to feel they can be dominant over you when the roo hormones kick in. I don't know of any reason to withhold attention from the ladies, though. And I don't think it makes any difference where on you they fall asleep!

Chickens really don't require or desire our attention the way cats and dogs do, at least, not if left to their own devices. Some you can train to enjoy it, and some not, again, at least among the ladies.

BO's are typically easy to handle and non-dominant. They tend to allow themselves to be bullied by others readily.

When hormones kick in, it only makes sense this can affect their attitude toward you, but I think this shows up a lot more with roos than pullets.
Cool, thanks for the replies about the roo. I usually just am walking behind him and he "whines" a lot while jogging away. Every now and again he sprints off. He'll come for yummy worms but will scamper quickly afterward. I'll lay off the chasing and hopefully the dude will chill out some, though it stinks to think he may think he's gonna be dominating me cuz I loved him

My main quesations about the silkies basically are about the feet thing (all 3 of the others have started body feathering and evern some head feathering at 3 weeks now, the other one not at all, bu has the bushiest feet) and the differences between body shape (if any) of males vs. females.

Thanks again!
I had a RIR roo who was a pet for the first several weeks and then turned too mean to keep, so I hear you.

I'm not a silkie person; no help there from me!
usually at 3 weeks of age the females r the bigger faster growing the males r slower to feather and smaller but soon the males will shoot up and u won't tell who is who for awile. i'd band the bigger 2 as girls and wait awhile till bigger and see if the guess is right for us it usually is. there is always exceptions to the rule good quality silkie roos r the hardest to sex i think sometimes even as adults they r so puffy u cant tell they r males less u can see the streamers and saddle feathers on them.

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