Hen or roo?

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by newchickgal, Jan 15, 2011.

  1. newchickgal

    newchickgal Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Nov 17, 2009
    Republic of Panama
    Where can I find info on how to sex chicks. How soon can I tell if they'll be hens or roos?
     
  2. medtec113

    medtec113 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Feb 14, 2010
    Alabama
    Most chicks can only be sexed for a short window of opportunity right after hatched. Once that window is closed, you have to wait until they lay an egg or crow. Not much more you can do.
     
  3. Baralak

    Baralak Chillin' With My Peeps

    What breed of birds are they? If they are full combed birds, you will notice the combs will start filling out on weeks 3-4 and growing consistantally on roos. Roos generally also don't grow feathers out as fast as pullets. Pullets will grow out tail feathers faster than roos. By about 6-7 weeks old you should have a good idea on your chicks. Unless they are silkies, or peacombs.
     
  4. newchickgal

    newchickgal Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Nov 17, 2009
    Republic of Panama
    ok, thanks for the info. I guess I'll just have to wait a while. They aren't even a week old yet. [​IMG]
     
  5. hoping4better

    hoping4better Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Nov 22, 2010
    Middle Tennessee
    I saw a video a while back on youtube that said by three days you can check the wing feathers and distinguish that way. Maybe you can find that video- search for sexing chicks. But if you're past three days it may be to late.
     
  6. Delta3013

    Delta3013 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 16, 2010
    Harker Heights, TX
    Quote:Right, you can wing sex...In pullets the secondary wing feathers are much shorter than the primaries.
    But it all depends on the breed, and when you do it, it works best by day 3.
     
  7. gritsar

    gritsar Cows, Chooks & Impys - OH MY!

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    Wing sexing only works on breeds bred to be wing sexed. Vent sexing is an art and even the experts don't get it right 100% of the time.

    The rest of us wait until the chicks are 4 to 6 weeks old and start to get their secondary sex characteristics.
     
  8. chkinut

    chkinut Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 25, 2010
    Leesburg, Ohio
    I have 5 BCM that are about 9 days old. i feel like i can kinda tell already which are roos and pullets. 2 of them are feathering out pretty fast compared to the other 3. they're already getting their tail feathers and their wings look a lot more advanced in feathering compared to the other 3. hopefully i'm right about it since i only wanted 2 pullets. time will tell i guess.
     
  9. Livinwright Farm

    Livinwright Farm Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jan 7, 2011
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    Quote:Apparently this means every breed that Murray McMurray hatchery sells??!??

    There are two different ways to feather sex chicks.
    The first(more common) is to look at the length of the primary feathers on the chicks wing between "elbow" and tip. if the feathers are short and stubby it is a cockerel, if they are a good 1/2-1 centimeter longer it is a pullet.
    The second(less commonly practiced) is to look at these same primary feathers only for pullet you are looking for two layers of primary feathers, cockerels only have one layer(they don't need the extra layer, as they don't set on eggs) [​IMG] We feather sex for all our chicks, and every time it has been accurate.

    Another way is to observe their behaviors. When you move a paper towel tube over the cage, at a moderate speed, the pullets will cower as the cockerels will raise their heads high to keep an eye on this potential danger to his "harem". also, males will be the first to come to your hand entering the brooder. [​IMG]
     
  10. gritsar

    gritsar Cows, Chooks & Impys - OH MY!

    28,907
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    Nov 9, 2007
    SW Arkansas
    Quote:Apparently this means every breed that Murray McMurray hatchery sells??!??

    There are two different ways to feather sex chicks.
    The first(more common) is to look at the length of the primary feathers on the chicks wing between "elbow" and tip. if the feathers are short and stubby it is a cockerel, if they are a good 1/2-1 centimeter longer it is a pullet.
    The second(less commonly practiced) is to look at these same primary feathers only for pullet you are looking for two layers of primary feathers, cockerels only have one layer(they don't need the extra layer, as they don't set on eggs) [​IMG] We feather sex for all our chicks, and every time it has been accurate.

    Another way is to observe their behaviors. When you move a paper towel tube over the cage, at a moderate speed, the pullets will cower as the cockerels will raise their heads high to keep an eye on this potential danger to his "harem". also, males will be the first to come to your hand entering the brooder. [​IMG]

    No, some are vent sexed by the hatcheries, some are wing (feather) sexed, some are sex links and judged by color. Three different ways the hatcheries sex em, but for the average joe (that didn't order breeds that can be wing sexed or are sex links) waiting until they are four to six weeks old is what usually happens.
     
    Last edited: Jan 16, 2011

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