Day old sexing? How to??


8 Years
Aug 26, 2011
Newark, DE
I have 8 eggs in the bator due around 1-31-2012 and I want to make an attempt to try sexing them after hatching. what is the process? I have about 2 solid weeks to learn what I am doing not only with hatching chicks, but with raising chicks, so i figured I might as well and try learning alot at the same time lol
There's two basic ways to sex chicks (assuming they're not an autosexing or sexlinked bird). One is vent sexing, and the other is feather sexing. Vent sexing is probably only done by a trained professional, as if it's done incorrectly, it could injure or even kill the chick.

Feather sexing is slightly easier, but the caveat there is that it only works on some breeds. I don't know which breeds that is though. Anyway, what you do to feather sex a chick, is when they're a day or so old, you very carefully spread their wing, and look at the feathers coming in. If you see one row of feathers, it's probably a cockerel. If you see two rows, it's probably a pullet.

here's a link to some great pictures, and even a practice quiz!
The general consensus is that its pretty much impossible unless you have sex linked chicks. Even trained professionals who know vent sexing get it wrong sometimes.
Hello from WV! I saw a video on YouTube a while back of someone working at a hatchery holding chicks up to a light then separating them, I have no clue what method this is but I hope you find some solid helpful info...
I have tried vent sexing, it was my first time, and I didn't really know what too look for. I didn't kill any chicks, but I know that the vent sexing process has to be done QUICKLY, if not, the chick could possibly die. I guess if you squeezed my guts out for exposure for a long period of time, I would probably croak.
Inquiring minds want to know:
If you can't sex them immediately, how long must you wait? I had someone show me how to look at the combs (here with helpful pictures as well), but now that I think of it I don't know how old the chicks were that they were showing me.
I have 3 chickens that are around 2 months old, and I noticed that the hen's comb still isn't red, (but orange/yellow), but the 2 boys have bright red combs.
I hatched out 12 chicks on New Years Eve, so that makes them 16 days old today. It's already been obvious which are boys and which are girls for close to a week now.

The boys just have faster comb development in size and color. I suppose if you had one chick, it might be hard to tell, but if you have chicks for comparision it's not too hard.

I just got chicks that were hatched out at the first of the year also. Of the 12, I am certain 4 are cockerals. YEAH! Future dinner. Ok, maybe not. LOL. But they have nice combs coming in, and seem to be bigger than all the others already.

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