How do you know the age of a chook?

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by CarolynPerth, Dec 1, 2009.

  1. CarolynPerth

    CarolynPerth Out Of The Brooder

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    I was given 2 brown crossbreed hens, age unknown but definitely mature. They are probably 2 or 3 years old but how do you tell the age of a chook?
     
  2. bywaterdog

    bywaterdog Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Count the candles on their birthday cakes.[​IMG]
     
  3. Princess Amri

    Princess Amri Is Mostly Harmless

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    [​IMG] This is why ALL POULTRY SHOULD BE PEDIGREED!!! No idea other than pedigree papers.
     
  4. rhoda_bruce

    rhoda_bruce Chillin' With My Peeps

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    do a history on them if possible. Otherwise judge by the combs. When they are at their peek it should be bright red. If they are very young they will be only pink and when they get old again and stop producing they will return to pink, but still be good for an occasional egg and brooding.....and of course, a soup.
     
  5. Sunny Side Up

    Sunny Side Up Count your many blessings...

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    Quote:I disagree, it would make unnecessary work & expense for many, if not most, poultry keepers.

    But I've been asking this same question, I remember reading somewhere how you could tell by how much color has been bleached out of their shanks, beaks & vents, but don't remember the details. I would like to know for certain because I plan to sell POL pullets at my county fair and want to show buyers how they can be sure I'm selling nice young stock.
     
  6. rhoda_bruce

    rhoda_bruce Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I keep the hatch date written on a calendar in my kitchen, which can be thrown away, but it is also written on the roosting room wall in my coop in pencil. Then if I reproduce others of the same breed, all I have to do is put some zip-ties on the feet to differ. I like to keep records of everything. But I don't have papers on each of my chickens. If I did have papers, I think I would get a blank one and copy it several times over . It sounds like a difficult job. It sounds like something that would raise the price of eggs and meat too. But good record keeping is good. I can see the point. I just can't see that it would work out in any way other than the honor system.
     
  7. CarolynPerth

    CarolynPerth Out Of The Brooder

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    Obviously can't look at their teeth for a clue [​IMG] Just curious about how long their retirement will last, I'm happy to have them as gardeners and get the occasional egg but at least one seems to be laying most days.
     
  8. Steve_of_sandspoultry

    Steve_of_sandspoultry Overrun With Chickens

    Quote:Look at the legs, an older hen will have larger scales than a younger bird. [​IMG] Other than that it's experience, look and a pullet and a yearling and a 2 year old bird.

    Steve in NC
     
  9. al6517

    al6517 Real Men can Cook

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    But I've been asking this same question, I remember reading somewhere how you could tell by how much color has been bleached out of their shanks, beaks & vents, but don't remember the details.


    This indeed is best way to judge by far, I have been using it for yrs and is working well for me. I attend many auctions and it is handy to be able to tell.

    AL
     
  10. Sunny Side Up

    Sunny Side Up Count your many blessings...

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    Quote:Since you know how, please share the details!
     

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