How tell difference between hen and rooster chicks?

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by Muscovyduck96, Oct 22, 2016.

  1. Muscovyduck96

    Muscovyduck96 Just Hatched

    25
    0
    14
    Jun 23, 2016
    Vestfold, Norway
    Hello! [​IMG]

    I have 5 silkie chicks and are wondering on how I can find out if they are roosters or hens? They differ from being 3 weeks to 5 weeks old...
    I hope the pictures are good enough too see?[​IMG][/IMG]
     
  2. Muscovyduck96

    Muscovyduck96 Just Hatched

    25
    0
    14
    Jun 23, 2016
    Vestfold, Norway
    Here's another picture

    [​IMG]
     
  3. Pork Pie Ken

    Pork Pie Ken Monkey Business Premium Member

    28,668
    14,771
    616
    Jan 30, 2015
    Africa - near the equator
    From what I understand, it's far from easy to sex silkies - even when they are a few months old.
     
  4. Muscovyduck96

    Muscovyduck96 Just Hatched

    25
    0
    14
    Jun 23, 2016
    Vestfold, Norway
    That's what I have also been told...
     
  5. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Chicken Obsessed

    20,136
    3,343
    496
    Feb 2, 2009
    Northwest Arkansas
    I don’t have Silkies but I’ve heard the same thing. It can be hard to sex regular chicks at that age, let alone Silkies. There are some other breeds that can be challenging too.

    There are many things that are clues that the chick might be male or female, sometimes even at hatch. I’ve had chicks at hatch that I was sure by posture and body conformation were male. I can’t say I’ve ever been able to tell that one was a female at hatch, but on rare occasions I can tell a male. But that is rare.

    Often at about five weeks it gets easier. Comb and wattle development, posture, body composition (heavy legs normally mean male, delicate legs female, but just general body shape too), and sometimes just general looks. When they get even older you can get sharp saddle and hackle feathers on males, rounded on females. How tail feathers grow in can tell you a lot sometimes. But this is older chicks and not Silkies.

    Different males and different females develop at different rates. Last year I had one that I was mistaken about at three months. I thought it was a pullet but nope, it was a cockerel, a very slow to develop cockerel. These were not Silkies but supposedly easier chickens.

    Silkie feathers are weird, their skulls are different. They can just be hard. I’ll give a link that talks about the different signs that a chick might be male or female but they are often just general clues and you can often get conflicting clues. I wish you luck!

    https://www.backyardchickens.com/forum/viewtopic.php?id=48329
     
    1 person likes this.

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by