male to female ratio: is it always 50/50?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by onthespot, Oct 24, 2008.

  1. onthespot

    onthespot Deluxe Dozens

    Mar 29, 2008
    Riverside/Norco, CA
    I was wondering if, since the hen controls gender, if biology would force every other egg to alternate, male, female, male, female and so on, or is each egg its own gamble, gender wise. The reason I'm asking is this. My copper black marans pullet, Tipsy, the first three chicks that hatched, looks like two pullets and a cockerel, then the next seven that hatched, looks like two cockerels and five pullets. Not that I am complaining! Not all the eggs hatched from either clutch. I'm wondering if I just totally lucked out, or if she is a bird that just tends to have more female offspring. I know in horses and dogs there are males that have high "filly percentage" at birth, not just counting registered babies, which can be a very misleading number. Most people I have spoken to have attributed that to having weaker male sperm that didn't make the trip as well to fertilize the egg, but in a hen, there is no trip, no work to be done, no stress on the genetic material. I don't see how, if half of all eggs ovulated are male, I could get such a high pullet ratio. Anyone know more about this subject, or have links? It is okay if it is dry and boring with no pictures, LOL. I just really want to know. Any of you have similar stories? Do you have a hen that produces a lot of roos or a lot of pullets?
  2. needmorechickens!

    needmorechickens! Songster

    Jul 2, 2008
    West TN
    Oh gosh, I don't know...someone please egg-u-cate us!
  3. KellyHM

    KellyHM Crowing

    Sep 10, 2008
    Lakeland, FL
    Each egg is it's own gamble, just like each sperm in people is it's own gamble. However, I would assume that conditions in the hen's body could sway things, just like conditions in a woman's body can slow/kill one sex of sperm and not the other at times.
  4. arlee453

    arlee453 Songster

    Aug 13, 2007
    near Charlotte NC
    I wish it was as predictable as saying always 50/50. My last hatch - of 15 Ameraucanas, I ended up with 1...yes 1 hen and 14 roosters. On the other hand, I've had a hatch of 12 where 9 ended up being hens.

    Statistically, if you hatch ENOUGH eggs you'd end up with an even split. But, in smaller quantities it's a toss up.
  5. Brighton chick

    Brighton chick Hatching

    Feb 2, 2014
    I spoke to a breeder who said that early in the year it's a higher female to male ratio, and towards Autumn it's more roosters. Don't know if that is true? That's why I looked up this thread!
  6. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Free Ranging 9 Years

    Feb 2, 2009
    Southeast Louisiana
    Most of my hatches are closer to 60% to 70% one or the other. That can be either sex. I do occasionally get 50-50 or real close hatches, but really not often. I have not noticed the time of year making a difference. I did add up all my hatches over a two year time span and got as close to 50-50 as you can with an odd number.

    Supposedly if your incubator is running a little warm, you are going to get more males because more females die in the shell instead of hatching. I don’t know how true that is and don’t really believe it, mainly because when I first got my incubator it was running a little warm. It took me a few hatches to get that worked out. Some of my first hatches had several more females than males.

    Some hens seem to have more of one than the other, but is that just odds? How many of her eggs are being hatched? I once got 7 pullets on a straight run order of 7 chicks.

    You’ll get different opinions from different people. To me, based on what I’ve seen not what I’ve read, each egg is 50-50 with some hatches really tilted one way or the other. But in the long term it balances out.
  7. Brighton chick

    Brighton chick Hatching

    Feb 2, 2014
    Well then it remains a mystery... As your quote from Judge Learning hand says, don't be so sure you know dogmatically what's going on, It makes sense, 50:50. Just wishful thinking then that my first set - in today!!!! will be mostly girlies.Thanks for sharing!

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by: