three week old chicks - 3 have feathers and tails started, 1 doesn't

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by peacebird, Sep 17, 2007.

  1. peacebird

    peacebird Songster

    Apr 12, 2007
    Does this in any way "sex" them? Could this mean three of one sex, ond one of the other?

    Their moms are Red Sex Link, and their dad is a RIR/Buff Orp mix.... Three chicks were golden/rust colored and one was almost white. The white one is the one who is very slow to feather - tho "he" is every bit as big as his siblings.... [​IMG]
  2. silkiechicken

    silkiechicken Staff PhD

    Sometimes you can tell but often it isn't very reliable. Roo's seem to be slower at feathering, but since your birds are mixes, you can't really tell since some breeds are fast feathering and some are slow feathering.
  3. chickenmama22

    chickenmama22 Songster

    Aug 29, 2007
    Hi, I was wondering the same thing. I have some mongrel 4 week old chicks that I hatched. Some have slightly longer tail feathers than the others. I "think" those are the females as I've read they tend to feather out faster than roosters. I don't know if it's really true or not, but here's what I am thinking about doing. I want to put leg bands / twisty or cable? ties on the legs of the short-tailed ones and see if they do become roosters. Sounds like a cool experiment.

    A few months ago I was dividing up some straight run hatchery chicks and tried to pick just pullets for our friends who can't have a rooster. We went by tail feathers and weight. The chicks that weighed less and the ones with longer tail feathers went home with them. (We were comparing same breeds -- RIRs and Moyer's Chicks.) Out of the 6 guesses we made, 5 were correct. I just took "Buttercup" [​IMG] back and he is now surrounded by even more hens.

    Well, I don't know if this really helps you or not. If you decide to mark the roosters or hens and actually guess right, I'd love to know about it.

  4. barg

    barg Songster

    Apr 27, 2007
    Hmm, I think sex links carry a color gene on their Y Chromasome .. don't they?
    Maybe not , but now this will be in "My Posts" and I can see if there is a link there somewhere [​IMG]

    Wait, are sex linked traits ressecive... I think they must be.
  5. peacebird

    peacebird Songster

    Apr 12, 2007
    I was told that the color for sex links was only a reliable trait for sexing if they were bred as sexlinks, and mine have a mongrel RIR/Buff Orp dad....

    I hope you are right about the ones with tail feathers being girls Nancy! Then I would only have ONE peep to re-home....!
    (I don't think Mario would tolerate another rooster in his coop)

    Is "Buttercup" going to get a new name...? Not that there's anything wrong with Buttercup, but... but... it might give the poor boy a complex....[​IMG]
    Last edited: Sep 18, 2007

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