Clues for telling chicks gender?

MillietheHen

Chirping
Nov 10, 2020
94
110
96
My wonderful broody hatched 9 chicks this past week. :celebrate I’m planning to keep three chicks and give away the rest. I really need the three I choose to keep to be hens. As they grow what are some clues that their a pullet or a cockerel? I’m going to keep them for awhile so I’ll have a good idea of what I have. I also prefer to know what I’m giving people because I’d feel bad giving someone a bunch of cockerels without them knowing.Any advice?
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Lady of McCamley

Free Ranging
10 Years
Mar 19, 2011
7,507
5,586
522
NW Oregon
We need a whole lot more information to even begin to guess. What breed(s) were the mothers? father(s)? If chosen carefully, you can get down colorings reflecting gender (sex linking or autosexing), but only if breeds for parents are chosen carefully.

If I assume mixed flock birds, then there are no early signs in down coloring. You will have to wait and watch combs, which will take some time. Boys develop combs faster, redder, earlier than girls. Usually I have a pretty good idea by 4 weeks, certain by 6 weeks.

Honesty is always the best policy. To be certain to retain girls, you will have to wait until you are fairly certain who the boys are, which means you will need to be transparent to your prospective takers. It is harder to get rid of cockerels. However, if you are not picky as to their use, some are willing to grow them for meat. I only ask my takers that they are humane in disposal. Don't expect money for cockerels (I only was able to sell one cockerel in my 10 years, and that was a coveted breed from a coveted line).

Gaining cockerels to cull or re-home is one of the responsibilities of hatching your own. It's not fun, but necessary.

If you know what the parents were, I might have some better gender guesses, but only in certain circumstances.

Cute brood. Congratulations on your broody hatch.

LofMc
 

JadeFarms

Just because I’m nice doesn’t mean I like you 💙
Premium Feather Member
May 3, 2019
7,834
92,636
1,257
Florida
I’m guessing the mother is EE by the muffs on the chicks. That means not sex link. Wait till 6 weeks old and you can tell by comb size.
 

MillietheHen

Chirping
Nov 10, 2020
94
110
96
We need a whole lot more information to even begin to guess. What breed(s) were the mothers? father(s)? If chosen carefully, you can get down colorings reflecting gender (sex linking or autosexing), but only if breeds for parents are chosen carefully.

If I assume mixed flock birds, then there are no early signs in down coloring. You will have to wait and watch combs, which will take some time. Boys develop combs faster, redder, earlier than girls. Usually I have a pretty good idea by 4 weeks, certain by 6 weeks.

Honesty is always the best policy. To be certain to retain girls, you will have to wait until you are fairly certain who the boys are, which means you will need to be transparent to your prospective takers. It is harder to get rid of cockerels. However, if you are not picky as to their use, some are willing to grow them for meat. I only ask my takers that they are humane in disposal. Don't expect money for cockerels (I only was able to sell one cockerel in my 10 years, and that was a coveted breed from a coveted line).

Gaining cockerels to cull or re-home is one of the responsibilities of hatching your own. It's not fun, but necessary.

If you know what the parents were, I might have some better gender guesses, but only in certain circumstances.

Cute brood. Congratulations on your broody hatch.

LofMc
Ok. Thank you! Both parents are ameraucana mixes ( at least that’s what I was told and they both look like it) I don’t think I’ll have any idea what gender the chicks are for a couple weeks. My plan for any cockerels was to give them away to any takers to be used for food or flock members. As long as their treated humanely I’m not too picky. I’m hoping for a good amount of pullets though :fl
 

Lady of McCamley

Free Ranging
10 Years
Mar 19, 2011
7,507
5,586
522
NW Oregon
Mixes of mixes, so typically no sexing in the down unless you stumbled onto some color sexing (not likely).

Sometimes (emphasize sometimes) in wild types the chipmunk down can give indication (if you stumbled onto color crossing) with full darker chipmunk stripe likely girl while the broken stripes or paler stripes tend to be boys. Whether that factors out to more than 50/50 likelihood can be debated.

You will need to watch and wait.
LofMc
 

gothicpicasso

Songster
Nov 19, 2020
131
262
116
LA (Lower Alabama)
I don’t think you’re gonna know for a bit. Not until the combs come in at best. I just had a hatch myself and I plan to raise them until first crow. Once that happens I’ll find homes for the boys. I’d keep them if I could, but I can’t have roosters in the city.
 

MillietheHen

Chirping
Nov 10, 2020
94
110
96
Mixes of mixes, so typically no sexing in the down unless you stumbled onto some color sexing (not likely).

Sometimes (emphasize sometimes) in wild types the chipmunk down can give indication (if you stumbled onto color crossing) with full darker chipmunk stripe likely girl while the broken stripes or paler stripes tend to be boys. Whether that factors out to more than 50/50 likelihood can be debated.

You will need to watch and wait.
LofMc
Ok. I’ll keep that in mind. 4 out of my 9 do have full dark chipmunk stripes but I’ll wait and see. Thank you!
 

mcdze

Songster
Sep 9, 2020
323
442
118
as mentioned, its very hard to tell unless the breed is pure and you know the breed very well, like on mine i can tell from day one of hatching which are roos, but afarm mix of ebay chicks, not a clue .. usually by the second week the most telling sign to me is roosters will get longer more stout looking legs but facial features again, very hard to tell on mixed chicks, ive had hens that developed larger red combs and wattles very early i was certain would be a rooster, but nope ...
 

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