Cochin Chick Gender- Development Pictures

Cochin Chick Gender- Development Pictures

Summer 2010, we ordered bantam cochins, Pekins as they are called in the U.K, and they aren’t sold sorted by gender at day old because of their tiny size.   We had 13 straight run chicks.    I have read around BYC that most of the time gender in bantam cochins is pretty easy to determine between 4 and 6 weeks and that the males feather in much slower than the females on the back, tails, and wing bows especially.  I am trying to keep track of the differences between Pullet and Cockerel Bantam baby chicks with notes and pictures.  In the U.K., the Pekin breed is one of the most popular for backyard chickens.

Note: I have a more recent post with detailed info on sexing bantam Cochins.

assortment of bantam cochin baby chicks from Ideal Poultry
The day the baby chicks arrived from Ideal Poultry.

The day they arrived, I could see no indicators of gender at 2 days old. It took a few more days to many weeks for the differences between Pullet and Cockerel Bantam baby chicks to emerge. The following is a summary of what I noticed with this group of chicks:

  • The black cochins bantam cockerels started showing male traits between 9 days old to about two weeks old.  The black cochins males were the only variety to demonstrate all the signs I was looking for: slow feathering on wing bows, tails and backs, plus pink combs early. They also acted more friendly and confidently.
  • The partridge chicks looked all exactly the same until sometime around 6 weeks old.  Then, the boys feathering colors started to change and be more dramatic and colorful.  Before that, the patterns were all kind of barred looking.
  • The buffs were the hardest to tell the genders appart early on.  Both sexes feathered in at the same rate.  It wasn’t until the comb developed on the one male at 5 1/2 to 6 weeks old, that I could tell any differences.
  • I have a long way to go before I can confidently sort cochin genders any earlier than 6 weeks.
  • If you have any suggestions for determining cochins’ gender, comments, or tips, please leave it in the comment section below…I would appreciate the help since we love Cochins. Thank you.
How to tell the difference in genders of bantam cochin  baby chicks
Black Bantam Cochin chicks – 4 or 5 days old. We ended up keeping the pullet that is second from the left and the one on the end of the right.
This is a pullet chick at 5 days old
The above photo is a pullet. I am pretty sure this is my hen named Lady Cluck
Baby chick gender photos
Black Bantam Cochin chicks – 2 1/2 to 3 Weeks old (there are two cockerels. they are on either end of this photo. The two black cochin cockerel were really easy to id as early as 7 days old and I marked their heads to make sure I could tell who was who if they blended back in later on.
Bantam Cocihn chick development photos - 2 males at 5 weeks old
Black Cochin cockerels 5 1/2 weeks old. These two moved to the Ag Department at North Hollywood High School along with 1 buff pullet, 1 black pullet, 2 partridge cockerels, and the other unknown gender buff. Differences between Pullet and Cockerel Bantam baby chicks were obvious in the black cochin chicks
pullet chick development pictures
Black cochin chicks – about 5 1/2 weeks old – These 3 all turned out to be pullets. We kept the two on the sides. Penguin is on the bottom left and Lady Cluck on the right. The middle one went to a new home at 6 weeks with 6 other chicks.
baby chick sexing photos
Buff Bantam Cochins – Less than a week old
Buff Bantam Cochin Chick -3 weeks old – none of the others would cooperate for a photo. I think this was the one and only cockerel.
How do you tell male chicks from female chicks
Buff Cochin chicks – 5 1/2 weeks old – pullet on the left and the one with a slightly pink comb on the right is a cockerel. At six weeks, the male went to the Ag Dept. The pullet on the left is our chicken Missy Prissy aka Greasy Chicken. She was the calmest of the whole group of chickens. She turned out to be a really friendly hen and great mama.
Bantam cochin baby chick development photos
Partridge Bantam Cochin Chicks – 5 days old
Partridge cochin bantam photos of genders by age
Partridge Bantam Cochin chicks – 2 1/2 to 3 Weeks old, All feathered in similarly and very quickly. The pullet is on the left, but there is nothing in this photo to indicate it. I know its her because she had the least amount of foot feathering of the 4 chicks. However, I don’t think the trait was an indicator of gender.
How to determine pullet chicks at 6 weeks old in bantam cochins? photos to help
Partridge cochins – 5 1/2 weeks, one has a slightly different pattern than the other three, kind of barred, not yet pencilled. The rate of feathering was the same in all four, but three were slightly darker in general and more burgundy in the hackles area. We had one pullet, Harley, and she was the one with more barring, less gray, and not much foot feathering; the one in front left, but we didn’t know it for sure for another week after this photo was taken. Differences between Pullet and Cockerel Bantam partridge baby chicks were almost non existent in this group until after 6 weeks old.

If you have any tips for sorting the genders of bantam chicks, I would love you to leave a comment below to help others out. Thank you.

Update: Since first posting this, I have raised many dozens of bantam cochin chicks, Buff Brahma Bantams, Frizzle Cochins, and Silkies from Ideal Poulty as well as some chicks from eggs. If you read this far and want more info on baby chick sexing, here is a link to another post on what I look for with a hand drawn diagram. Best wishes with you new chicks

12 thoughts on “Cochin Chick Gender- Development Pictures

  1. I keep looking at the 6 week old chicks and I just can’t seem to tell the difference but I have a few different colors in this hatch, I bought my eggs from a breeder who had a few different Cochin colors so its hard for me to tell :/
    If the comb and waddle is red and larger then the rest can I assume its for sure a roo?

  2. Just hatched six mixed cochins (buff cochin father). All have light down /feathers on legs. 1 black, 2 yellow, 3 red. I got the eggs from my in-laws farm. They moved from the city and bought 50 acres in S. Ga.

  3. I have a standard size partidge cochin chick. She’s at least 2 weeks old. She’s larger, more alert, and less feathered than our black cochin chick who is the same age. Even our week old EE has a bit more feathers. Do partridge cochins usually feather slowly?

    1. Hi Austin,
      I haven’t raised any LF (large fowl standard size) Cochins. My experience with bantam Cochins, Pekins, is the males sometimes feather in slower than the females of the same color variety. However, I have raised a few varieties, like silver pencilled, which is similar to partridge, that the females feather in really slow. My first two pullets of those were still pretty fuzzy at 7 weeks old. The self blue Cochins also are really slow at feathering in, in both genders.

      With the partridge bantam Cochins i have raised, the boys and girls both feather in at the same rate and look pretty similar until about 6 or 7 weeks old. At two weeks old, they usually have a few tail feathers, some wing primary feathers, and a few shoulder feathers, but the rest is bare/ fuzzy. If your chick is thriving and growing otherwise, I wouldn’t worry too much, especially when comparing her to the Easter Eggers or other colors.

      1. Thanks for the response. I am wondering also what the differences are between bantams and large breeds, despite size of course. All I see right now is wing feathers and a bit of leg feathers. She’s very active, has her comb coming in, and stands taller than the other two. I wonder if you were able to observe this in your partridge cochins. I’ll just sit tight for now. I know what to look for, just gotta wait for it.

  4. Great pics. I was hoping you could identify which was the female of the bunch in the Partridge Cochin chick picture. Thanks!

    1. I don’t know in the “less than a week old picture” of the partridge chicks, which is which from that photo. In the 3 week old picture, she is also in the front row on the left/ or if counting bodies left to right, the pullet is the second from the left. She had the least amount of foot feathering out of the 4 chicks.

    1. I too have 3 show breed buff Pekin bantams from German champion Pekin/Cochin bantam breeder Gerrit Bosch. From eggs I hatched only three out of ten sent. The birds are feathered nicely.The only difference showing is one is longer than the other two.6 weeks today they have hardly any comb and even though I have a flock of them as garden birds I still cannot tell. Buffs are so hard to tell apart and I only hope I do not have 3 cockerels and hope for 3 hens in prayer. I hate killing anything so lovely but infested once with five cock birds i say never again. I keep just six mixed coloured Pekin bantams with a red partridge Cock bird. I wanted buff hens as thee of my mixed are now 5 years old and stopping lay. If 3 hens all will be perfect.

I would love to know what you think about this.

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