Early Signs of Having a Rooster

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by ChickenMan77, Mar 8, 2012.

  1. ChickenMan77

    ChickenMan77 Out Of The Brooder

    Mar 7, 2012
    My wife had this great idea to get some chickens last year, It has become my favorite hobbie. Last year one of our chicks (Buff Orpington) was much smaller than the rest and didn't get feathers on it's back till long after the rest of them did. That is the one that ended up being the rooster and it was smaller than all the other chickens till about 6 weeks. We got 5 more chicks about 3 weeks ago and I am noticing the same slower feather development in two of the five. One is a Road Island Red and the other is a Silver Laced Wyandotte. Is this slower feather development on their backs around 3 weeks a sign of having a rooster?
  2. skunknchatter

    skunknchatter Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 19, 2007
    Northern Utah
    I got 2 BO chicks a few years ago. One grew a lot faster than the other. In my case the faster growing one that feathered out first turned out to be my rooster.
  3. BlazeJester

    BlazeJester Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 2, 2011
    Midway, GA
    It can be, but it can also occur in a female with the slow feathering gene, which if I understand correctly is dominant. I have two bantam araucana roosters - one grew normally and the other had slow feather growth.

    If the gene is not explicitly being bred for in that particular line of chickens, this is not a good determining factor. Often true, but you'll end up throwing out some hens and keeping some roos if this is your strategy.
  4. ChickenMan77

    ChickenMan77 Out Of The Brooder

    Mar 7, 2012
    Thanks for the insight. I was planning to keep all of them till I knew for sure regardless but I was hoping for some early indicator. Thanks for the responses.

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