Did i get this right? Sexing RIR chicks at 2 weeks.


10 Years
Mar 31, 2009
SouthEast Texas
I read a thread on here a couple of weeks ago, where some wonderful soul(s) explained the differences in RIR feather development in males and females around 2 weeks of age. Now, i can't find that thread; however, i studied the pictures and studied my birds and took pictures, and then at exactly the two-week mark, i took these pictures. It seems like at exactly 2 weeks, the differences magically became very clear in their tails. Please let me know if i got it right.





Sexing by tail and wing feather growth is not an accurate method for all breeds. When I ordered sexed BOs and SLWs from a hatchery, the females had longer tail and wing feathers like you are going by and the males were shorter. But with RIRs, as well as speckled Sussex and BC Marans that I have, I thought I could sex them that way too, since some grew longer tail feathers and others didn't, but some of the ones with the long tail feathers of all three breeds turned out to be roos, Of the 3 long feathered RIRs I kept, 2 of them turned out to be roos so it dosen't work with RIRs.
sorry, you'll just have to wait and see.

Give us some side and face pics and we may be able to tell a little better.
I wasn't really looking at the length of the feathers, but the shape of their growth.

The one i suppose to be a female has a very definite up-side-down "V" formation, while the ones i labeled as boys are just shapeless puffs of fluff at this point.

I'll look for some full body pictures that i took at about 1 1/2 weeks.
When my RIR's were 3 weeks old, I picked them from a bunch at the feed mill. I went by smallest combs. When I got home I noticed one had no tail, thought for sure it would be a boy. Now at 26 weeks I am happy to say all are girls.
Agree..too many people get misled with the fast feathering way of sexing them. I've seen it all too often and they are definitely not all sexable this way.
Yes I agree with hinkjc. Not all breeds are able to be sexed by wing sexing-fast feathering I don't know the ones that are that's a good place for some of the genitic studiers here on BYC to answer. And I might add sometimes they just amaze me with their facts and information.

Now my little story from experiencing my first go at buying wing sexed chicks.
This spring after easter I decided to buy some new babies to introduce some new blood and some different color in my mix, you know kinda break up the sea of mostly red in my flock. Just had a crazy notion to get them you know what its like walking in the feed store and there they so tempting and making it hard to walk away from them so I gave in and bought some. I don't know why I'd just hatched out around 300 red babies for selling mostly. I got 5 Gold sex-links because I surely didn't need any more roos that's for sure. Thought I was done I had satisfied my addiction, Oh No I wasn't done yet. The next week there I go to the feed store again for guess what more feed only and Lo and Behold there they are again more temptation. This time they were Barred Rocks a cage full, must have been 2 of 3 hundred of them little black and white fur balls. So I decided to get 5 more chickens remember I'm an addict, and I asked did she know the sex of these, were they marked someway or something. She said no but she could sex them by wing sexing I kinda hesitated for a moment(knowing better the whole time in the back of my mind) but i said: "O'yeah, alright, I want 5 pullets and you to show me how to do this anyway." She went though about twenty or so looking and showing me differrences the whole time. She said ther you go 5 little pullets. I left there with a smile I got me another bump(fix) you know. Well....3 wks. later I'm starting to get that confused feeling about my pullets, so I say: "I'm game" I'll give them another wk. or so to tell more about my PULLETS. Well she was darn near on the money at 6 wks I had 4 perfect light barred roos 1 little Dominique pullet. I got my lesson anyway you can't sex Barred Rocks by fast feather sexing, Unless you do it backwards heck I don't know anymore. And bless her poor heart she sure should have made a killing off that cage full of roosters selling them as pullets.

The life and trials of catdaddyfro

Remember to eat your Peanut Butter and Bananna sandwiches. They're good for ya.
Well mine were sexable that way.
I got 2 RIR cockerels and a pullet that I thought was Redstar but maybe Production Red?? Anyway, the cocks didn't get tail feathers for the longest time, and their wing feathers were considerably smaller. I put pictures of them on My BYC page and highlighted the differences.

They ALSO had pretty noticable combs though, so if you can't tell by the feathers then the combs should be a big hint too.

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