Purpose of sex-links?

Discussion in 'General breed discussions & FAQ' started by chickortreat, Sep 8, 2009.

  1. chickortreat

    chickortreat Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I've been wondering for some time now, and I hope someone here can help enlighten me...what exactly is the purpose of sex-link chickens? I know that they can be sexed from the time of hatch, and I suppose that's worth SOMETHING, but I also read that the trait will not reproduce in further generations. So...if you purchase sex-links from a hatchery, they have an easier job sexing your new hatchlings...but it's worthless to the end user, as the trait cannot be counted on in future offspring. So why fool with them? It's like buying seedless watermelon seed...oh yeah, it's great to eat the seedless melon, but you have to buy seed again the next year, and I happen to like saving seed. Anyway, I was just hoping someone could shed some light on this for me. I have some RIR's and some BR's, and thouight they run together, when I get ready to hatch off some I intend to separate them for a few weeks prior to collecting my eggs for hatching so that they will be breed specific. I simply don't care for mixed breed chicks.

    Which brings me to another question...how long does fertilization last? If I separated the breeds today, how long would it be before the hen would lay UN-fertilized eggs, and then once the appropriate rooster were re-introduced, how long before the eggs would be fertile? I've heard several different ideas, and I'd love to hear from some of BYCer's experience.
     
  2. georgialee

    georgialee Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 9, 2009
    Knoxville, TN
    They are GREAT layers. Plus most hybrids have more vigor than purebreds (same as any other animal).

    As far as I know a chicken can lay a fertilized egg up to 3 weeks after the roo is taken out.
     
  3. isadream

    isadream Chillin' With My Peeps

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    The main reason is because they can easily be sexed at hatching by anyone and you do not raise them for 2-3 months only to discover you have raised a lot of roos. Hatcheries can sex them without having to have a person trained to vent sex them.
     
  4. chickortreat

    chickortreat Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Okay, that makes sense. Let me ask you this...if I cross my RIR rooster with my BR hens, I will come up with Black Sex-links as I understand it. Now these will be hybrids? Can eggs be hatched off of these, and if so, what will the offspring be? If allowed to continue crossing, would I one day wind up with a bunch of sterile mutt chickens? It was this that inspired my original question. I don't want to "lose" anything through breeding. I can see hatching off a bunch for their laying capability, but do you then plan to cycle them through and hatch off new ones every year or so?
     
  5. nicalandia

    nicalandia Overrun With Chickens

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    now that you have learn their purpose....ask yourself this question: why oh why haven´t they come up with a Sexable white egg layer?.........to this day they still realy on profecional people to determine the sex of production type white leghorns...
     
    Last edited: Sep 8, 2009
  6. Chris09

    Chris09 Circle (M) Ranch

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    chickortreat,

    Yes a RIR rooster over a BR hen will make a sex link.
    They would be a hybrid, the egg can hatched and the offspring would be for the most part black with some red showing through in the hackel feathers..

    As for seedless watermelon most like Sunray and Millenium are a hybrid and need a pollinator to produce a wattermelon. Like most hybrid you might never get a plant like the parent stock.
    If you are going to save seeds go with Open Pollinated types.

    Chris
     
  7. chickortreat

    chickortreat Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:Speaking of White Leghorns, has anyone here had good luck with them? I've heard good and bad about them. I wouldn't mind having a few, because I've heard that they're the best for feed-to-egg conversion, but I also heard that they're terrible as far as meat chickens go. I must admit, having grown up on a broiler farm, I find white chickens a bit boring. Now the Brown Leghorn looks right pretty...
     
  8. chickortreat

    chickortreat Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:But they would continue to lay fertile/hatchable eggs? Just a variable mix?

    I remember when I was younger, my Dad tried to always keep a good quality registered bull. We had up to 85 head of cows at one time. The problem was, most of the cows were mixed between Black Angus, Polled Hereford, Santa Gertrudis and Brahman. No matter how good a bull we had, most of the calves turned out looking like some variable of the parents. Healthy good-looking calves, but NOT good reflections of the sire.

    That's what concerns me I guess. Ten years from now when someone drives up and asks, "What kind of chickens you got there?", I want to be able to answer them without having to create new vocabulary.
     
  9. Chris09

    Chris09 Circle (M) Ranch

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    Quote:But they would continue to lay fertile/hatchable eggs? Just a variable mix?

    Right... The eggs would be fertile and hatchable eggs...

    Chris
     
  10. blackdotte

    blackdotte Chillin' With My Peeps

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    You can get sex linked white egg layers, use a gold male - Brown Leghorn, Campine, Hamburg etc over a silver hen - Silver Duckwing Leghorn,Silver Spangled Hamburg.
    David
     

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