Anyone Good At Guessing Araucana's?

Bridebeliever

Songster
Sep 12, 2015
2,005
272
191
Revelation 21:9 Washington
I got this girl last week from our Humane Society. She was dropped off there at night with several Araucana roosters. They didn't know anything about her!
Can anyone tell by these pictures about how old she is? I don't know anything about this breed. Thanks!
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Here she is hanging out with the rest of my girls...
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Lady of McCamley

Free Ranging
10 Years
Mar 19, 2011
7,491
5,540
502
NW Oregon
After a bird reaches maturity, it is very hard to estimate age with any certainty.

Some signs can indicate wear and tear that older birds often have (or very poor living conditions for a younger bird).

If her leg scales are flat and tight, she is likely younger. If her overall look is bright eyed, smooth wattle/comb, full feathered, glossier, plump, she is likely younger. Younger hens will have slightly smaller combs that are rosy pink rather than true red if they have not come into lay (although anemia from worms or poor conditions will also cause pale combs and different breeds have different size combs).

You can gauge her readiness for laying by the width between her two pelvic bones....3 to 4 finger width indicates a laying hen. Two or less, non-laying hen. If she isn't molting, and has only 2 finger width, with smaller, rosy comb, and overall looks healthy, she is likely a younger pullet.

A laying hen's vent has a stretched "smiley" appearance while a non-layer's vent looks small and puckered. Older spent hens (especially in rescue situations) generally look haggard, rough, craggy and spent.

Sexually mature girls will do the egg squat while young pullets will not. Old hags often will no longer squat.

But again, once a hen reaches sexual maturity, it is very hard to tell their age. Many of the non-productive signs above can be poor husbandry and ill health rather than true age. Even an older hen well cared for can be productive, albeit not as prolific as her younger years.

I'll ink a good video article below on determining if a hen is ready to lay or productive.

She is a pretty girl. Good luck with her.

LofMc

 

Lady of McCamley

Free Ranging
10 Years
Mar 19, 2011
7,491
5,540
502
NW Oregon
....also...to add....

In closer inspection of the photos, I am seeing some toe curling in your gal.

That probably happened when she was a chick, and could have been caused by wrong incubating conditions, using wire cages as flooring in brooder, vitamin deficiency as a chick, to poor genetics.

If you haven't done so, I'd put her on some Chick Saver vitamins to make sure she doesn't have a deficiency, although the damage done in toe curl as a chick by now would be irreversible.

I have had toe curling from vitamin deficiency (in young chicks) and from genetics (rare breed, over inbred). Toe curling can indicate a lower resistance and immunity, and sometimes failure to be as productive if it is genetic. (Don't breed from her as you do not know the cause).

If it was from wrong hatching temperatures, and the bird is able to get around okay, it does little harm.

LofMc
 

Bridebeliever

Songster
Sep 12, 2015
2,005
272
191
Revelation 21:9 Washington
Yes, it was one of the first things I noticed. Poor girl. She does get around just fine though. I thought possibly from hatching. And then I thought possibly she was a "dump off" because of the defect. She was left at the humane society (dropped in the same box) as three Araucana roosters. No, I don't plan to breed her, no roosters at our house either! I do have a vitamin/electrolyte mix on hand I could add to the water.
 

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