Saddle Feathers Examples of Roos/Hens, Please

Discussion in 'What Breed Or Gender is This?' started by HunterWilson, Jul 19, 2010.

  1. HunterWilson

    HunterWilson Out Of The Brooder

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    I am trying to understand what difference there are in the saddle feathers of a hens from roos. I would greatly appreciate if is someone could post photos of saddle feathers that illustrate the differences between the sexes.

    I am mostly interested in RIR and Araucanas.
    What ages do the differences become noticeable?

    Thanks!
     
  2. Happy Chooks

    Happy Chooks Moderator Staff Member

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    I have pics, but not of Araucana or RIR.

    RIR's should be very obvious by 8 weeks. Araucana's will take longer 10-12 weeks. (sometimes longer)

    ETA: Saddle feathers don't show until about 12 weeks.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 19, 2010
  3. gritsar

    gritsar Cows, Chooks & Impys - OH MY!

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    See the white pointy feathers across Thor's back?:

    [​IMG]

    Those are saddle feathers. When you think about where a (horse) saddle would sit on a horse, that's where you'll find the saddle feathers on a cockerel/rooster.
    I think Thor was about 12 to 16 weeks old before his became noticable.
     
  4. Pequena Bandada

    Pequena Bandada Small Flock

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    I was going to ask this same question! I just looked at the picture of Thor... and now I'm curious. Hens have feathers in that area too, so how do you know those are rooster saddle feathers versus regular hen feathers across their back? (I hope that made sense)
     
  5. gritsar

    gritsar Cows, Chooks & Impys - OH MY!

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    Quote:Sure, that makes sense. The roo's saddles feathers are pointed and they drape down. I'll look here in a sec and see if I can find a better pic of Thor with his saddle feathers draped. You may also notice from looking at that pic that Thor has pointed hackle feathers (the feathers around his neck, what my DH calls his cape). In a hen those would be rounded as well.
     
  6. gritsar

    gritsar Cows, Chooks & Impys - OH MY!

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    Okay, in this pic you can kinda see his saddle feathers draping down his sides:

    [​IMG]

    Vs. a hen that has rounded, smooth and short feathers across her back:

    [​IMG]
     
  7. Pequena Bandada

    Pequena Bandada Small Flock

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    This makes total sense now with the two pictures. Thank you! I have just gone outside and confirmed that yes, indeed, the four pullets I have are all pullets. I wasn't worried, but curious to see if perhaps I had a roo thrown in. Mine are 15 weeks, and no hint of saddle feathers.

    Thanks again for the explanations!
     

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