Just Have to Know... The Speculations are Driving Us Bananas...Male or Female??

Discussion in 'What Breed Or Gender is This?' started by kdtcameron, Feb 24, 2012.

  1. kdtcameron

    kdtcameron Out Of The Brooder

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    Feb 24, 2012
    Hi everyone! I am new to chickens as well as BYC (my whole family loves this site now).

    I was given seven, 1 week old chicks at Christmas time as a present from my good friend that knew I had been talking about getting chickens for years and finally helped me take the plunge.

    The girls are a mixture of different breeds according to what my friend told me. I am dying to know which one(s) are roosters and which are hens. I had hoped for one rooster, but am afraid after the recent "crowing"/squaking that's started, I may have more than one. I am now actually thinking that 4 of the seven might be roosters,[​IMG] (which breaks my heart since we would only keep one. I've been told having 2 or more roosters can lead to fights, not to mention cuts down on the potential number of eggs). While my friend has told me that there's no way to tell until one lays eggs after 5 - 6 months, I am still hoping someone with some experience can give us a clue. Apparently hens will sometimes crow like roosters when they are "trying out their voices." Is that correct?

    Anyway, here are a few pictures. Since none of them are of the same breed, comparing them with one another doesn't help. We do have 2 sets that look like twins, but the other 3 seem different. If anyone can let us know what we've got, that would be fantastic!!! We haven't had any eggs yet, but am hoping soon. They are 11 weeks, 2 days shy of turning 3 months.

    Thanks everybody... sorry for such a long initial post...looking forward to hearing your thoughts.

    [​IMG]
    This is Chicken #1 - there are two chickens like this that look almost identical. They are both pretty large, this one is the largest of the brood.

    [​IMG]

    This is Chicken #2... Grumpy Gus. We suspect her to be a hen.

    [​IMG]

    Chicken #3, not a great picture of her/him... too much wiggling going on.


    [​IMG]
    Chicken #4 (also pictured with Chicken #1), is by far the smartest of the whole crew. We jokingly call him/her Einstein. Curious, bold... and quite sweet. This one puts up little fuss to be picked up and tends to nap in your lap - but within the past 2 days has pecked me and my son.


    [​IMG]
    Chicken #5 - This one is the twin to #2. My guess is hen. ???

    [​IMG]
    Chicken #6 - My very sweet but slightly flighty pretty girl/boy.

    [​IMG]
    Chicken #7 - the twin of #1. As a matter of fact, it's almost impossible to tell them apart. #1 is just slightly larger than this one, but they are both on the larger side out of them all. #4 and #6 are pretty big too... and all four have made that weird crowing "cocka - dood-da - crackle/croke" sound, sometimes just more of a squak than a doodle.
     
    Last edited: Feb 24, 2012
  2. leadwolf1

    leadwolf1 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I'm sorry, but at 11 weeks old, that looks like a rooster to me!!!
     
  3. kdtcameron

    kdtcameron Out Of The Brooder

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    Which one? Just #1? I'm assuming that's the one you were referring to since I was still adding pictures.

    (Yes, we really need to name them... just as soon as we know what gender they are) lol!
     
    Last edited: Feb 24, 2012
  4. AccentOnHakes

    AccentOnHakes Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 2, 2009
    I say 4, 6, and 7 for sure.

    I just took a quick glance, didn't look to carefully; may be other roos.
     
  5. Americana

    Americana Chillin' With My Peeps

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    IMO ;
    #1 Cockerel
    #2 Pullet
    #3 Cockerel
    #4 Cockerel
    #5 Pullet
    #6 Cockerel
    #7 Cockerel

    Looks to me like you have 2 girls and 5 boys... ooops [​IMG]
    It happens. As far as hens crowing, that is very rare, you just got a bunch of boys!
    take a good look at their saddle and hackle feathers. and if they are pointed and not rounded you have a boy.
    That's the general rule except for a small number of hen feathered breeds such as the bantam sebright or a standard Campine,
     
    Last edited: Feb 24, 2012
  6. Americana

    Americana Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Having more than a couple of roosters will not affect the number of eggs laid unless the hen or pullet is constantly harassed by the roosters or under stress. As far as housing the roosters, I have lots of show roos that have grown up together living in the same coop! There is a top dog there, and though it will be challenged, and occasionally switched around, they usually won't hurt each other, or even mark one another [​IMG]
    Just a pecking order thing. I have found it's better to have 3 roos in the same pen as opposed to two, for some reason, if someone starts a fight the dominate roo will break up the fight by a sound, look or wingdance. At last resort, he will kick butt.
    Some breeds you can't put the roos together at all though, such as games, Yokahamas, etc. Looks like yours are all mixes and should be OK if you want to keep some of them. They are pretty birds [​IMG]
     
  7. featherz

    featherz Veggie Chick

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    2 and 5 are girls. They are only less than three months old right? It's early and I may have missed that. but if three months old I only see two girls. =(
     
  8. Fred's Hens

    Fred's Hens Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

    I agree. It seems the cockerels are outnumbering the pullets 5 to 2.

    That is a really unbalanced flock. Too many potential roosters and too few hens and too few eggs. [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Feb 25, 2012
  9. kdtcameron

    kdtcameron Out Of The Brooder

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    Thank you all for confirming this for us. I suppose for some reason I was hoping since their breeds were a mixed variety, that my eyes could be deceiving me. However there was NO way that I would have ever guessed I would end up with 5 out of 7 as males! Go figure the odds of that! [​IMG]I am encouraged to think that we could keep more than one rooster, but it would be great to have a few more egg layers mixed in there. As a mother of 3 sons, on a hobby farm filled with males of every variety... I could use some more ladies around the place to help balance things out. [​IMG]

    How am I possibly supposed to choose which ones stay and which ones go?? Is there a rule of thumb for picking out the "best" roo... color, size, personality?? Or is it all just luck of the draw? Ugh, they kinda feel like my babies in a way. (In my best whiny cry baby voice... Hmmph.. this wasn't supposed to be depressing or complicated).
     
  10. Fred's Hens

    Fred's Hens Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

    We hatch out about 4 dozen cockerels each year.

    We raise them in a bachelor pen until they are easier to judge. We keep two finalists. No sense choosing them too soon. We wait until they are approaching sexual maturity, ie 17-18 weeks. We want to see the weight they gain, as all our cockerels are used for meat birds. We want to see which feathers out the best, has the best personality and which is best around the pullets. We pen up our two finalists and the rest go into the freezer or directly to the dinner table. Tasty.

    Then, we allow the cockerels to mature into roosters and they are given harems. We are still evaluating. Disqualifications include being mean. If the rooster turns ugly toward humans or hens? He's a gonner, post haste. When you do get a good rooster? You keep him for a few years. They usually perform well into their 5th season.
     
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