Can you feather-sex silkies? Anyone tried?

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by Jilara, Oct 7, 2009.

  1. Jilara

    Jilara Songster

    Aug 4, 2008
    Bay Area, CA
    I've got three silkie chicks that I'm trying to feather-sex. I checked them at two and three days, and I swear I have two boys and a girl. At least the wing primaries look longer on one than on the other two. Has anyone even thought of trying feather-sexing? If you have, did they turn out the way you expected?

    I'll report back when I have a more definitive idea, like when they're old enough to crow. [​IMG] But it's an interesting experiment, and I was wondering if silkies follow the pattern seen in some of the other chickens.
  2. silkiechick05

    silkiechick05 Songster

    Sep 27, 2009
    North Texas
    I have three silkie chicks also

    and i would love to know the sex


    at what age do they start crowing?
  3. Smartie_Pants

    Smartie_Pants Songster

    Oct 5, 2008
    Madisonville, KY
    I think, if I am remembering correctly, that for wing feather sexing to work, the lines have to be bred for feather sexing. So if the silkies weren't crossed a certain way to promote it, I don't think it will work.
  4. RWeb

    RWeb Hatching

    Oct 7, 2009
    Silkies are hard to feather sex, I use to go by the development of the comb and wattles. Look for a more developed comb and larger wattles on the males. Its easier to feather sex them at about week two. For next time take note of which chicks start growing a tail first, these are normally the females, works for most breeds of poultry. The silkie boys will also have larger and brighter blue lobes than the girls. You could always post some pictures of your birds on this forum.… I find it always helps to get a few opinions from others who specialize in the breed.
  5. mlm1965

    mlm1965 In the Brooder

    Aug 14, 2009
    Maryville, TN
    Mine started crowing at 17 weeks, It was funny at first. Now I cannot get him to hush. He crows when he is happy, and he crows when he is mad! [​IMG]
  6. walkswithdog

    walkswithdog Crowing

    Jul 17, 2008
    DC Region
    No you can't feather sex silkies.

    Like they said, sometimes the comb will help, and wattles and earlobes. But... lol not always.

    Silkies are one breed - it either lays an egg or crows and then you're sure. I have five mystery chicks now at three months - for sure (lol probably) two girls, two boys and one .... REALLY unsure.

    Did get a SPLENDID black male though - yay. One of the Blues is also better than the other three. Can't wait for them to finish growing out.

    They're my next improvers for my Sizzle line, so I would have preferred fewer males but that's the breaks.
  7. Jilara

    Jilara Songster

    Aug 4, 2008
    Bay Area, CA
    They're still less than a week old, so it's wait and see time. They were hatched from eggs, and it's an adventure. Even playing "guess the color" is an adventure. I got four showgirls and three silkies, and a couple look like they're going to be gorgeous.
    I think maybe a couple of the showgirls will be maybe lavenders. A couple of the silkies have a faint brownish cast. It's going to be interesting to see what we get!
    Butterflygirl50 likes this.
  8. RoyalPayne

    RoyalPayne In the Brooder

    Jul 27, 2012
    I know you Ostend your question about feather sexing your silkies in 2008, and it's now 2016. I was wondering is your experiment panned out. We're the early tailed chicks female? Or did or matter? If you can, I'd appreciate any thing you can remember.
  9. Butterflygirl50

    Butterflygirl50 Chirping

    Jun 10, 2017
    Abington, MA 02351
    I love my Silkies.

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by: