Sexing meat birds

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by ccr, Apr 5, 2007.

  1. ccr

    ccr Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 4, 2007
    I put this under raising chicks and then saw this section!

    I raise Cornish Giant Broilers, but this year I am also doing Cornish Game Hens.

    So, I need to be able to sex these chicks by 4-5 weeks to pick out just hens for the Cornish Game Hens.

    I cant remember from last year if they show wattles and combs by 4-5 weeks?

    Any other way of telling them apart?

    Thanks!
     
  2. justusnak

    justusnak Flock Mistress

    By 4 or 5 weeks, you should be able to see the combs of a roo. I have Cornish X...and can tell the difference at 3, almost 4 weeks. Ohhh, time flys, when life is limited for a cornish X.
     
  3. ccr

    ccr Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 4, 2007
    Thanks Deb.

    I know, there lives are short...especially for the game hens, but I make their lives as good as possible for that short time - lots of fresh air, green grass, dust baths, running and playing...and ofcourse lots of the best food I can get my hands on!

    I actually put leg bands on most of the game hens I got, but wish I hadnt now as they grow so fast I am going to have to take them all off anyway!

    So, if I see combs, I can assume they are roos? Is this 100% reliable? I dont want to be putting a small roo on someones plate instead of a game hen!

    Thanks so much!
     
  4. justusnak

    justusnak Flock Mistress

    ccr...Hmmmm...well...100%??? If you know what you are looking for...yes. However, some hens might get a rather large comb. When I ordered mine, we ordered 8 hens....they sent a free roo. I have NO idea why!! We had ordered 19 BO as well...so had our minimal order. I cant tel the diff. already.Oh well...free for the freezer, I cant complain.
     
  5. ccr

    ccr Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 4, 2007
    Deb,

    Okay chicks are three weeks old now. All have combs, but on some I also see wattles coming in - can I say these are boys? I am also quite amazed by the size difference at this age - hens seem bigger! However, I did read in the Rochester Hatchery book that the boys do put more energy into their frames to start off with, then get meat on them which is why they make the better roasters at 8-12 weeks.

    Anything else I should be watching for to tell the difference at this age?

    Thanks again!

    Melissa
     
  6. silkiechicken

    silkiechicken Staff PhD Premium Member

    The hens should be a bit smaller but you got it right in that the roos will have their wattles in. Good luck.
     

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