hens or roos

Discussion in 'What Breed Or Gender is This?' started by chickencutie, Mar 28, 2011.

  1. chickencutie

    chickencutie Songster

    Jul 22, 2010
    I know it's very difficult to tell, but does anyone know how to tell the difference b/w hen and rooster when they are chicks?

  2. FMAFarms

    FMAFarms Songster

    Feb 20, 2011
    Rural Michigan
    Some strains/breeds are sex-linked, meaning that the boy chicks are different in color from the girl chicks. Other than that, there are two ways to tell, the Japanese sexing method and the wait-and-see method.

    Wait and see = around four to five weeks of age, your chicks will have combs and wattles started. The larger the comb and wattle in a particular breed, the more likely that one is a roo. Roos also should be starting practicing their crows by then. This is really the only way to identify Silkies.

    The Japanese method should only be done to new hatches and not at all to chicks older than one week of age. This involves holding the chick in your left hand a specific way (head held between pinkie and ring finger, legs held between index finger and middle finger, chick head down, then rubbing its belly with your right thumb until it poops. Wipe the poop away, then use your right index finger and thumb to apply pressure to the opposite sides of its vent. This will cause the vent to protrude a little. The boy parts -- a small pinhead-sized dark circle -- will be visible on the interior rim of the vent.

    Again, if you have no experience doing this, please just wait. An inexperienced sexer can accidentally strangle a chick when doing this.
  3. Judy

    Judy Crowing Staff Member Premium Member

    Feb 5, 2009
    South Georgia
    This is a "what breed or gender is this" question, and there are several answers, depending on the breed and age. You can learn a lot about this reading through that forum, where I'm going to move this thread. If you cannot have or absolutely don't want a roo, sex links are one way to go to ensure this, although you can tell Barred Rock chicks apart at hatch by their coloring, too, at least pretty well.
  4. sheila3935

    sheila3935 Songster

    Jul 10, 2010
    Stonington, illinois
    sometimes not always though you can tell a little roo by his actions. They will be more bold. Stick you finger in the brooder at face height the boys will lift their heads stand tall and my even peck the girls will cower. Most of the time depending on the comb will grow faster and the wattles will come in sooner. Straight combs I can tell at about 2 weeks sometimes sooner pea combs I have a harder time with. I have 2 silkies right now that are 2 week old. They have walnut combs. Have never had one of those before so am not sure what I have yet. Barred rocks are easy males are lighter in color and have larger irregular headspots. My RIR's seem like the boys comb out really early. My Australorps the boys looked like ostriches. Stand very tall with necks stretched out. I have a few whit rock babies right now and their combs are not doing much but I stll think I have a boy he/she challenges the older ones jumps on backs just acts like a rooster. I have had the year of roosters so I have gotten pretty good at observing mine and figuring them out pretty early. Most times you will know by 4 weeks

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