Red Sex Links (how to tell the difference between a roo and pullet?)

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by garthmyers, Jun 26, 2011.

  1. garthmyers

    garthmyers Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 2, 2011
    Central Missouri
    I have six sex link chicks 3 red and three black. They are approximately 4 1/2 months old. Within the past week one of the hen has started showing signs of being a rooster. She is crowing and aggressive towards the other chickens and definitely the most dominate of the six. How do you tell if you have a rooster or just a hen taking on the roll of a rooster in the absence of a rooster in sex links?
     
  2. Fred's Hens

    Fred's Hens Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

    True sex links are bred so that, at hatch, the sex is obvious. With Red Sex Links, the female is reddish, while the male is white.

    With the black sex links, the difference is the head spot. So, ideally, if you truly have sex links, they should have been sexed easily at the time of hatch. Yes, a dominate hen can take the roll of a roo, but the "crow" isn't quite up to par.

    Got any pix? At 4.5 months, the difference is VERY obvious. At 18 weeks, while pullets are preparing to lay or are already laying, with their cubby bodies and fluffy butts and matronly look, a rooster has sprouted saddle feathers, struts about with bigger comb and wattles, a sharp eye, alert head, has a prominent tail, and has a long legged, knot kneed kind of walk.
     
    Last edited: Jun 26, 2011
    1 person likes this.
  3. garthmyers

    garthmyers Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 2, 2011
    Central Missouri
    Here is pics of the hen in question. New to all of this anyone who could tell me that she is for sure a hen or a rooster?

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  4. LilyD

    LilyD Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Wow you're right it sure does look like a roo but red sexlink roos are white with brown highlights not red so that is truly a puzzle. Has she laid eggs for you before? If not maybe she's a different breed like a RIR? Just guessing really. I know that my Red sexlink roos look nothing like that.

    [​IMG]

    Here is one of my two red sexlink roos. He's only 8 weeks which is why he's not too developed yet lol.
     
    Last edited: Jun 26, 2011
  5. wingsofglory

    wingsofglory Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Palmer Alaska
    That looks like an all Rhode Island Red rooster. Must have jumped into the wrong bin or got mixed up on the assembly line or fell on the floor and put into a box with other red chicks, or something. He is not a male sex link.

    A red sex link hen usually has some white tips on her tail feathers and/or some white underfluff. His tail is black/dark green like a rooster. He also has beginnings of saddle feathers only roos have. And has that roo swagger - love that photo from the rear.
     
  6. melroseladi

    melroseladi Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 17, 2011
    Melrose, Florida
    It may be a second generation sex link in which case they can not be sexed by color. I have second generation sex links about the same age and yours looks just like my roo and in your 3rd pic the chicken in the background looks just like one of my second generation red sex link hens.
     
  7. mommto3kiddos

    mommto3kiddos Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 9, 2011
    I have a red sexlink girl that is VERY well developed as your above hen. My husband swears shes a he, but she has no spurs & has never rooed.. And the other girls she was hatched with have half the comb & wattle as her.. I noticed she started squating a couple days ago.. Were looking for eggs real soon from her.. You have a beautiful girl [​IMG]
     
  8. dianaross77

    dianaross77 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 10, 2010
    Grand Blanc, MI
    You've got a rooster, my friend. If you do a google search for Rhode Island Red rooster, you'll pull up images that look just like your "hen." There must've been a mix up. RIR chicks look enough like sexlink pullets at hatch to be confused for each other.
     
  9. AnaD

    AnaD Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jan 27, 2011
    N. Ca
    Nice roo!
    Here is my RSL hen...when she was a pullet.
    [​IMG]
    Edited to mention that my girl matured in the comb and wattles much earliers than my other chickens of various sorts.
     
    Last edited: Jun 26, 2011
  10. cavemanFarmer

    cavemanFarmer New Egg

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    May 10, 2013
    How did it turn out with the RedStar Hen who looked like a RIR Roo? I've got one as well. McM sent the chicks. it was supposed to be 24 Red Sexlink hens, 3 Dels, and a NewHampshire Red Roo.... now It looks like I have 2 Red Roos. Am hoping one of them is just a real butch looking hen.
     

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