Getting started, but worried about roosters


6 Years
Apr 13, 2014
As the title suggests, I am really considering starting up having a few chickens at home. I have a daughter who I think would love them to death, and I have always had an interest in chickens. My question comes to getting them though. Most breeders do not sell sexed chics, but I understand chics are the best way to go so they grow up understanding the family and used to everything. I live in a neighborhood and having a rooster simply won't work. I am in the military, and might end up other places I cannot have a rooster. So, unless I order online, I run the risk of getting one or more rooster when I really just want 3 hens. What do I do in this case? Do I simply risk it and hope I get three females? (1 in 8 chance of that happening), or do I get stuck ordering from a mass producer? I am really looking into the ameraucana breed, but I don't think I want Easter Eggers (maybe I will, but at the moment I don't), which means most of the big producers won't work for me anyways unless I switch breeds. I can always cook any rooster I get, but don't they take a few weeks to get big enough, and by then I fear they will make their presence well known. Giving away is an option, but it seems that everyone has roosters to give away and thus makes it very unlikely I will get him to a home. I refuse to do anything cruel such as abandon him/give him to a shelter (they have enough to worry about), so I want to ensure I am not in that situation.

Any thoughts of this would be really appreciated, and thank all of you for so much help since I joined up.
A lot of online hatcheries sell sexed chicks. I know My Pet Chicken does, and it has a minimum of 3 chicks, depending on where you live. Your feed store may carry some sexed ones too--no mimnimums there either. Sex-links are the way to go if you want to avoid a sexing error.
Here's the link to My pet Chicken
If you can find a breeder near you, just get birds that are a few months old. They'll make fine pets, you'll skip the whole brooding thing, and you'll get eggs way sooner. Plus, birds will be easily sexed by sight.

If you're looking for a specific breed like an Ameraucana, but don't want Easter eggers, you'll need to educate yourself on the difference. An Ameraucana breeder will be able to tell you what standard colors their birds are. Beware anyone who says "we just let them all breed together" or "well, my rooser's black and red, and my hens are brownish, but one's yellow".....those folks aren't breeding Ameraucanas.
Also Craigslist may be an option to buy partially grown birds. That is a popular breed so it makes chances better.
I started with 4 month old pullets and.they were young enough that they know me and are totally tame.
Sex Links are a good way to go. You know right from hatch wether they're a hen or a roo. I have a Black Star who is absolutely beautiful. I finally learned after having to rehome 3 roos. The Polish broke my heart. He was such a sweetie. My last purchase were 2 month old Sultans. I could tell what they were, and I don't have to go through the messy brooder stage. They're not supposed to be good layers. I just got them because they look cool, lol.
I love the idea of knowing what I am getting, but if I do want a pure blood ameraucana than I am quite limited in the ability to get it. I suppose, since its my first set of birds, Easter Eggers might end up being a better route since I can be sure to get 3 hens instead of needing 6 chicks for a decent chance at 3 hens. The pullets wouldn't be bad, but my local sellers don't sell pullets, so that limits it back to ordering chicks online or getting a bunch of extras and either cooking or giving away roosters when they get old enough.

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