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How Do U Sex Delaware Chicks?

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by Barry Natchitoches, May 12, 2010.

  1. Barry Natchitoches

    Barry Natchitoches Songster

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    Sep 4, 2008
    Tennessee
    I have three and a half week old Delaware chicks playing in a pen in my computer room right now.


    Problem is, they didn't come with pink or blue leg bands. I can't tell which are male and which are female.


    I have been told that females have more feathering than males, and males have a bigger and redder crown that begins to form about this time. Males tend to run a bit larger and heavier than females.


    The problem is -- my kids aren't obeying those rules.


    The two with the most feathering are the two heaviest birds. Both were 9 ounces on their 21st (or 22nd) day birthday. They are mostly white, and they do tend to have slightly bigger combs than one of my other birds.


    A third bird is smaller (by an ounce) than the two I just mentioned, and she has almost no comb forming at all. She does not have quite as much feathering, I don't think, but I'm really not a good judge on stuff like that, and neither is my wife. This bird has more black color on its whitish body than the first two birds I mentioned. She was only 8 ounces on her 21st day.


    The fourth bird was a runt from the day I got it. It is now the same weight as the third bird, though. As late as age 17 or 18 days old, it was almost an ounce smaller than any of the other birds - including bird #3. But on its 21st day weigh-in, it had caught up to bird #3. This bird has the least amount of feathering of any of the four birds, and it has about the same amount of black on it as bird #3. However, it's comb is about the same size as birds #1 and 2, described above.


    I don't have the ability to post pictures.


    But is there somebody who can help me sort out who might be who in this group?


    Or does somebody have pictures of Delaware babies that they could post, so I might have some kind of idea what a little gentleman or a little lady should look like at three to four weeks old?


    Thanks in advance for your help.
     
    Last edited: May 12, 2010

  2. Fergie

    Fergie In the Brooder

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    Jun 1, 2007
    NW, Washington
    When I had Delaware chicks a few years ago, we could tell the sex by the wing feathering. The pullets wing feathers grew in right away, and the cockerels were later.
     
  3. Barry Natchitoches

    Barry Natchitoches Songster

    649
    28
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    Sep 4, 2008
    Tennessee
    Yeah, that is what I keep reading on the net.


    But with my little rascals, I'm finding that the ones that are slightly more feathered are also a bit heavier than the others (by an ounce, when these birds are only eight and nine ounces).


    And three of the four have slightly larger combs at three and a half weeks, but one of those birds is a runt who has the least feathering of all.


    Furthermore, two of the birds have some black all over their bodies while the other two are white with just a bit of black on their tails.


    Very confusing for me and my wife, especially since we are city folk who do not have alot of experience raising chickens.
     
    Last edited: May 12, 2010
  4. I had delawares last year, and I dyed the tops of their heads either pink or blue, depending on what we thought they were. every week, we reassessed... sad to say, eventually only 3 of the 10 stayed the same color throughout... the others all ended up somewhat purple...
     

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