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Author Topic: Can you tell at 6 weeks if a chicken is a hen or not?  (Read 7833 times)
twb
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« on: November 28, 2008, 07:50:16 PM »

Our chicks are just 6 weeks old and I'd like to know which are hens and which are not so we can know how much freezer space we need Wink.  Is it too soon to see the differences?  What signs show up first?
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« Reply #1 on: November 28, 2008, 08:39:47 PM »

At the hatchery they sex the bitties at birth.  But I don't know if a 6 week old chicken is going to take to well to your checking out its gender!!! Smiley Smiley Smiley
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reinbeau
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« Reply #2 on: November 28, 2008, 09:17:07 PM »

Problem is the hatcheries only guarantee an 85-90% success rate with sexing chicks upon hatching.  Trust me, they can be wrong, my 15 'female' chicks included one rooster.

Twb, post a picture so we can take a peek at them.  First you'll notice comb - but that can be very misleading, some of the girls will grow them, too.  I will say it was pretty obvious at five weeks that my rooster was a rooster, but some breeds (mine was a Buff Orpington) aren't as obvious.
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« Reply #3 on: November 29, 2008, 01:41:07 AM »

I worked on my families Perdue Chicken Farm - they had 1600 acres, 2 acres to Perdue stuff, 20 acres for family estate and the rest share cropped for mostly soybeans.

This was in the late 70s in North Carolina, I have no idea how it is done today. We got them already sexed and only 2 days old, I think the numbers was 16,000 all male pure white little chicks.

The coop was about the size of a airplane hangar, only 15ft tall, tops. We'd open up sections every few days, starting them with 1/8th the total space, and as the grew, we'd open up another section until week 4 when all eight gates are open. At 6 weeks, they are taken away to the processing.

They back up 18 wheelers at night, turn on flood lights inside the trailer and thousands of birds would run inside the trailer until they couldn't get any more in there. I think 12 to 14 trucks transported the birds, all in one evening and the following morning 16,000 new males arrive.

Purdue would set you up with the business, all equipment, ready to go - you literally work 7 to 8 years BEFORE you own the equipment, but have to buy their feed and medicines if needed.

It was interesting for a kid of 10-15 to do that kind of thing.

Good luck with sexing them, I know from watching DIRTY JOBS, you squeen new born chicks, at the stomach - one good squease and the poop, then you can see a small bump (like a Ken doll literally) that can be seen, if no bump it is a female, bump is a male.

That's everything I know about chickens except a lot of good recipes Smiley

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« Reply #4 on: November 29, 2008, 10:33:50 AM »

Good luck with sexing them, I know from watching DIRTY JOBS, you squeeze new born chicks, at the stomach - one good squeeze and the poop, then you can see a small bump (like a Ken doll literally) that can be seen, if no bump it is a female, bump is a male.


Very interesting story John, that was quite the experience that you had when growing up about the chicken raising, I loved to hear about it.  I watched the same show on dirty jobs.  It seems to me that I need to clarify something here.  The chicks that had to have their stomachs squeezed to get the poop out was so that the vent (that's their bum) could be opened to see if there was that bump in there on the inside top that indicated a rooster.    Only specific breeds of chickens need this poop squeezing thing done because the wing feathers are such a difficult way to sex the birds with.  Follows a little more explanation of the wing identification of gender:

With most chicken breeds, (this is what I remember I think it was Brian telling us) (and I also saw another show on this), the gender of the chick can be told by the way the feathers are on the wings.  I think they can be sexed this way up until 72 hours old or something, and then it becomes more difficult to do this, until they get to another stage in their growth.

When we raised some chicks a few months ago, when they became a certain age, there was a definite difference in how they looked, so I was pretty sure about the gender.  It seemed to me that the bleeperals started to grow their waddles and you could definitely see this, and the poulets did not have this red waddle showing.  As Ann said, this may be not be 100% true.  But I tagged those bleeperals and poulets and it seems to me that I am pretty much right on with the gender, as they grew.

I did take some pictures to show the difference, I will look them up and post them here.  I will also tell you the age at what these pictures were taken.  Enjoy.  Good luck.  Have a most wonderful, bright and great day, health.  Cindi

Look closely at these three pictures, hope you can see.  You will notice in these pictures the ones with the red combs and waddles, they are the boys.  Now if you look still closely, you will see many that don't have the comb, nor the red waddle below their chin.  Those were the girls.  There is a DEFINITE difference at this age, if you look really closely.  There was 20 girls and 13 boys in this batch.  They were incubated birds.  They were taken on September 18, last and they were born on August 7, last, they were 6 weeks old, to the day when these pictures were taken. 






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« Reply #5 on: November 29, 2008, 10:42:36 AM »

I can't see any pic's just a box with a red x.
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« Reply #6 on: November 29, 2008, 10:44:09 AM »

Sorry, the pictures are not being loaded into the post.  There were three of them, they came up in the post as the url's, but I see they did not come through, oh well, I'll try again another time. Wonder why, strange things done in the midnight sun, by the men that moil for gold..........Cindi
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There are strange things done in the midnight sun by the men who moil for gold.  The Arctic trails have their secret tales that would make your blood run cold.  The Northern Lights have seen queer sights, but the queerest they ever did see, what the night on the marge of Lake Lebarge, I cremated Sam McGee.  Robert Service
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« Reply #7 on: November 29, 2008, 06:38:10 PM »

Sorry, the pictures are not being loaded into the post.  There were three of them, they came up in the post as the url's, but I see they did not come through, oh well, I'll try again another time. Wonder why, strange things done in the midnight sun, by the men that moil for gold..........Cindi

The problem with your photos, Cindi, is you used the word c*ckerels in the name, and the forum software is changing it - which I think is kind of overkill.  Hopefully they can add the word to the white list so it isn't changed - it was funny when it was just changing the word, but now it's messing with URL's - or you'll have to not use that word in your image names.
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twb
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« Reply #8 on: November 29, 2008, 10:46:26 PM »



Here is a pic to help you decide if they are "girls" or "boys".  I wanted to post a couple more pics but with dial-up it is to slow.  Maybe I'll try again another time.
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« Reply #9 on: November 30, 2008, 08:45:40 AM »

Are these from a hatchery order? If so,tell me what breed's you ordered and I can help you out.It's difficult to tell from the picture.
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Cindi
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« Reply #10 on: November 30, 2008, 09:47:01 AM »

Sorry, the pictures are not being loaded into the post.  There were three of them, they came up in the post as the url's, but I see they did not come through, oh well, I'll try again another time. Wonder why, strange things done in the midnight sun, by the men that moil for gold..........Cindi


The problem with your photos, Cindi, is you used the word c*ckerels in the name, and the forum software is changing it - which I think is kind of overkill.  Hopefully they can add the word to the white list so it isn't changed - it was funny when it was just changing the word, but now it's messing with URL's - or you'll have to not use that word in your image names.


Ann, ha, ha, ha,!!!  thank you for noticing that and telling me, hee, hee.  Now I am laughing and I my bottom dollar you are right on with that.  I didn't even know that the post was changed to read "bleeperals", that is kind of funny.  I don't mind, that is what keeps our forum that wonderful, family-safe place to be, things are looking over us and I appreciate that, it is cool.  So anyways, I'll add the pictures to this post I am replying in now.

I have renamed the pictures in my folder to "young roosters and poulets", I am sure that they will not not be considered a swearing word, hee, hee.  Oh do so love life, have a wonderful and awesome day, great health.  Cindi

Let's go!!!







Ba bing, ba bing, ba boo!!!  Yep, the changing of the name in my images to young roosters worked.  I have never thought that c*** was a bad word, it is the word for that male rooster.  Oh well, guess it is the name of another apparatus too, smiling.

These little chickens were ones that were incubated from eggs from my brown chickens.  The fathers of these chickens were one of two:  My Rhode Island Red, Antonio and my Columbian Rock, Roquefort.  Antonio no longer is with us,  Sad

These hens were the daughters of Roquefort and the brown sex-sal-links that we originally got.  They are much, much bigger than the original sex-sal-links.  There is also a couple of white hens that we have, no clue what breed, that had a few babies in this clutch too.  They turned out to be roosters, so their heads were offed and we ate them, yum, yum.....have a wonderful and most awesome day, health.  Cindi
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« Reply #11 on: November 30, 2008, 10:22:53 AM »

And bit** is a female dog

And A** is a donkey
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« Reply #12 on: November 30, 2008, 02:15:42 PM »

"MOST" of the time the males will show a (larger) comb early on. I see several males in the pics.
The large light colored one in the first pic. is a male
Take a close look at the two in the center fore front of the third pic. Females.
The two just behind those two and a little to the right are males.
Let these 5 grow to full maturity and see if I'm correct.
Do not put your money on one that crows early to be a rooster. You could loose.
This bird could end up laying an egg.
A nice bunch of birds.
doak
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doak
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« Reply #13 on: November 30, 2008, 02:22:04 PM »

cockerel
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« Reply #14 on: November 30, 2008, 02:25:29 PM »

When it comes to where we can't speak proper language to identify something like a bird, dog, or what ever,,,,,, see ya.
doak
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« Reply #15 on: November 30, 2008, 02:41:31 PM »

Are these from a hatchery order?

Nope, our own Isa Brown went broody and all our friends with chickens had gotten rid of their roosters so we did a "cold call" on someone nearby with chickens.  I offered to pay back eggs for eggs or honey for eggs.  They opted for the honey and have since purchased several times saying it is "the best honey I've ever had".  I laughed, thanked them, and said we think so too Smiley.

Cindy's pics give us hope that we do have a couple of hens at least.  We do not see the wattles coming in like they are on her pictures.
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« Reply #16 on: November 30, 2008, 03:14:49 PM »

I really can't see your pictures well enough, but the males get pointy saddle feathers just in front of where their tail begins.
The females get that are filled with puffy feathers while the males have pointy feathers that droop over like a saddle.
Some breeds you can tell alot sooner than others, my black copper marans had huge combs at 2 weeks, leghorns were the same thing.
Others took a little longer.
I would check around on their lower backs to see if they have any saddle feathers coming in.
Males lower feathers are pointy at the tip rather than rounded off like a females.
There have been quite a few times where I was unsure of the sex of a chicken when the pointy saddle feathers proved it for me.
Good luck.
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« Reply #17 on: November 30, 2008, 07:50:35 PM »

Natalie that is a good pointer in figuring out the sex.  Looking at the waddles and (or is it wattles???) comb seemed to do an almost 100% job for me.  I put a yellow ring on all the poulets legs and left the young roosters (hee, hee, no bleeping this time, hee, hee) without any rings.  I separated them about 10 days ago and put all the roosters into their own home.  These bad boys were beginning to get honky with the Banty gals.  That was not allowed and I took them all out of the main chicken pen that same day.  It bugged the crap out of me that they were not picking on someone their own size, hee, hee....They are now on death row getting some nice weight put on them.  There are 13 roosters and 20 hens, all have seemed to have proven true to their sex.  BUT.....a mystery still does remain....there is actually one poulet that I am not sure may be a rooster, it looks kind of weird.  I am keeping my eye on this cross-dresser and time will tell that tale.  These birds were 6 weeks old when I tagged them.  Beautiful, most wonderful day, lovin' our lives.  Cindi
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« Reply #18 on: November 30, 2008, 09:52:47 PM »

When it comes to where we can't speak proper language to identify something like a bird, dog, or what ever,,,,,, see ya.
doak

Sorry if the word filter isn't perfect guys - no one is sitting here looking for curse words, we just have a list built into the software which words are added - Jerry I know has an issue with it, but in the 5+ years of the forum, we have had lots of spammers get through EARLY ON who weren't talking about female dogs or the comb on a roosters head.

I might go in an remove a few words, but it occurs to me (and this I aim at Doak) if you are "too sensitive" to having a PC Program catch some words that MIGHT be offensive to people if those words slip through. Having a FARMING FORUM is indeed a good reason to allow that word. But rather than suggest that to mos or members, you say "SEE YA". God forbid after all this time you'd rather crap out a ZINGER like "seeya" then jusr SUGGEST in the FORUM we ALLOW THAT or other words - we are NOT robots DOAK, we are people all working every day, and word filters aren't pefect either.

We filter language here ALWAYS have, so few incidences occur that you are unlikely to see the BLEEPS that appear instead of the word, but I worked hard replacing common slang bodypart words with the more technical words, to let a word filter bother you sounds to me like a much deeper problem, I'm sorry about striking a nurve but in the same respect, until word censors come with grammer checksers built in, we'll have occasion errors - but when is the last time this has happened?

I will remind you a HACKER broke through our security in the VERY BEGINNING using this software, a REAL MAN sent PMs of a naked man doing nasty things - I'd rather make a mistake like in Cindi's case than let something like THAT to happen again. One of those members receive that photo was a 14 year old member. Doak, it ain't easy being us sometimes. Think about EVERY AT ONCE is not an easy thing to do.
The only appology here is to Cindi, who was not bothered by it, actually found humor in it.

So I don't get it Doak?  Haven't you been around long enough to understand our positions and goals here. You have seen people come and go and may not agree with our choices - The links Cindi sent (if sent by a new member) could have easily been to a site with male genitalia was pointing  Kiss all over the place as far as the word filter knew, it did what it was told to do.

Because we have a farming forum, I'll remove the word in question, but if it gets misused, and becomes a threat because of some future unknow hack - then it will return to the filterit will return. Shame on you though for not even mentioning to anyone that maybe that word or others can be removed, but instead YOU say "SEEY YA" again shame on you. You have been around through a lot and I believe we have made a special place by enacting tough rules for some people to swallow.

You just hurt me personally with your responce, rather than you suggesting that we have a FARMING FORUM and that word should come off the word filter - you say SEE YA. What has any Admin Staff member EVER not done that a member asks of them?! Our entire site has been CARVED by the MEMBERSHIP - over a DOZEN forums here are MEMBER SUGGESTED, so don't talk smack. We do what we say, and say what we do here. And it is through that strength that our members enjoy the SAFETY NET for them and their families.

Don't be making RASH JUDEMENT ON ME OR OUR STAFF it is NOT a wise thing to do, rarely does our Governing Body (think of me as a Mayor of a little city) our great mos staff all mull over issues with me of course, and if the majority is for an issue it passes, same as a minoprity count will fail - but MOST IMPORTANTLY, in the case of a TIE, I am EXECUTIVE POWER (more of a Biden then a Palin - I know Biden never had executive powers, just a sample) but I break the ties. Yes, Beemaster often don't get his way here, we are a governing body, all of who speaks their minds. We are NOT freaking ROBOTS Doak - if you see something you'd like change, speak up okay?

All the above is DEDICATED for the WONDERFUL LADIES of the FORUM who make this the MOST INSIGHTFUL PLACE ON EARTH! I enjoy reading you all, you are so brilliant in you own special ways.

So Doak, talk to us like humans, Beemaster Forums is a MEMBER BUILT PLACE - we owe Goooogle Ads NOTHING because we will NEVER sell SPACE to them or ANY ELSE plastered around our pages nothing. I rarelt discuss this, but thanks to the kindness of those donating to the forums we ALWAYS have money for something we build up as technology allows. To all of you, we are doing GREAT - thank you so very much.

Where was I??? Oh yeah, Cindi NICE CHICKENS, Perdue would butcher them am bag them up at the supermarket THIS week! So if you want a fryer, your close - I'm more a BROILER CHICKEN GUY or rotiserrie cook when it come to whole birds and I'll take a hefty 1 to 2 year olds Smiley

 

It's NOT expensive to run our site due to the kindness of many. You can use any language you choose on some forums, not ours - but I agree THAT word can be TESTED, it is ALWAYS THE MEW MEMBERS THAT WORRY ME, NOT THE SENIORED MEMBERS HERE.

I said before, we are security guards at Walmart, looking for shop-lifters, regular shoppersare SELF POLICING, they (as you must by now - shame on you if you don't) but it's the new people in the store that we are ALWAYS watching, for the SAFETY of our other customers.

If THAT don't make sense, then I can not convey what it is we do here and how member input has been instrumental in creating our site - and I know you know that, or you just don't pay attention or worse, don't care and I do NOT think the latter is the case.

I think you forgot that there are REAL HUMANS who work very hard every single day, with less money than a dirt farmer carried. Your every word can be impactful - in this case you PRSONALLY hurt my feelings. I'm ALWAYS UP FRONT, some people call it BOLD others call it BLUNT, either way, you hurt my feelings - when have we ever ignored any request from you? Like I said, keep it real.

Lordy, Help us all. You try to create a Magical Wonderland and you get kicked right in the gut.

PS Cindi: love the chicks, we had Rhode Island Reds and Mascovies for years and years - I really loved having them both.

John
« Last Edit: November 30, 2008, 11:23:40 PM by beemaster » Logged

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« Reply #19 on: November 30, 2008, 10:06:27 PM »

John, no, I am not so sure that Doak was really, really annoyed by this, just merely a little.  I am sure it is all OK.

I think personally that the PC program that catches ANY words that could in any way be construed as "wrong" is a wonderful thing.  So what!!!  If we see the word "bleep" now and then, so what?  Seriously, the program that catches any really bad slang is the tool that helps to keep (along with our great members) this a most beautiful place to spend time.  There is no ugliness to our forum, in the form of bad words, bad people sneaking in, and so on -- and I could go on.  John, leave those words in that you may be thinking of allowing in the PC program, unless the words are just so OK that they can get removed.  Having this forum a safe place to spend time, without any threat of any type of "badness" certainly makes me happy and makes me feel 100% comfortable to spend time here.  Yes, and I really don't mind the BLEEPs, they are rather funny.  My two cents.  Have that wonderful, safe and happy day, Cindi
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There are strange things done in the midnight sun by the men who moil for gold.  The Arctic trails have their secret tales that would make your blood run cold.  The Northern Lights have seen queer sights, but the queerest they ever did see, what the night on the marge of Lake Lebarge, I cremated Sam McGee.  Robert Service
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