Are my Silkies show quality?

Discussion in 'General Chicken Discussion' started by chippy99th, Jan 8, 2017.

  1. chippy99th

    chippy99th New Member

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    Probably not, but they're such beautiful birds I'd love to show them off! :)

    The white (I think) cockerel is Sugar and the buff (I think) pullet is Spice. They are just 3 months old. Both have 5 toes on each foot, all fluffy feathers except some ragged ones on the wings and a few in the tails, black skin and combs with turquoise earlobes (no red). Sugar has a walnut comb. Spice has a single comb, which I understand is a flaw, although she's probably too nervous for showing anyway. Sugar's very calm. Fluffy legs, muffs, beards, and crests.

    They're still losing/growing in new feathers all the time, so Sugar's beard is a little small right now and Spice looks kinda patchy. They're still cute though. I'm also thinking about volunteering with Sugar as a "therapy chicken," since he's so cuddly and friendly.

    Photos attached below; in the last pic, Spice looks smaller in proportion to Sugar than she actually is, because she's crouching and Sugar's not.

    So what do you think? This is my first time raising Silkies and I'm genuinely curious, so whether yes/no, please tell me why! Thanks!
     

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  2. seminole wind

    seminole wind Previously seminolewind

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  3. Nm156

    Nm156 Well-Known Member

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    If you were going with the SOP , i don't think so,but I'm not an expert on Silkies.
    Where are they from?
     
  4. robin416

    robin416 Administrator Staff Member

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    They've got a ton of filling out before you'll know whether they are or not. The white has possibilities. The buff? That comb gives it no chance. But that does not mean if all else is great with it that it can't be used for breeding.

    And I think you're right about the white being a male but not so sure about the buff.
     
  5. chickenqueen

    chickenqueen Well-Known Member

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    Cute chickens!I don't do Silkies but have thought about showing my birds.Then I think about the possibility of bringing home some disease that could wipe out my flock.To me,it's not worth exposing my flock to disease for a blue ribbon.I know my Blue Cochin,Blue Belle,could win awards but I would rather have Blue Belle than a blue ribbon.So we stay home where it's safe.
     
  6. robin416

    robin416 Administrator Staff Member

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    What I see that you didn't mention, is very good foot feathering. Hard to tell from the pics but the wings look high and tight.

    Watch for streamers off the back of the head to tell for certain if they are male or female. See the legginess on the white? Watch to see if the buff is the same way. A sure sign of being male.

    A breeder some years ago noticed that the part of the comb that meets the beak are shaped in the form of a V. I've been out too long to remember which is which but he noticed that males seemed to have the V face up or down and that females were just the opposite. I don't know if that trick will work with the single comb though.
     
  7. chippy99th

    chippy99th New Member

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    Thanks for the responses, guys! Yeah, the buff is the one that's been giving me trouble as to whether it's a he or a she. No sign of streamers yet, nor legginess IMO although I've never owned silkies before, so I could be wrong. Y'all are talking to an extreme novice when it comes to silkies!

    I got them from my local feed store, which normally has more utilitarian birds like RIRs and Barred Rocks. I jumped at the chance as I've wanted them for ages. I had no notion of showing at the time so I didn't ask where they came from before that, but I'm guessing they're hatchery birds, with maybe a small chance they're from a local breeder.

    Chickenqueen, you hit the nail on the head regarding my main concern about showing. The silkies are housed in a different area of the property from the main flock, so containment of disease would be possible, but I don't want them getting sick. That's why I've got reservations still. Maybe neither will be show quality and then I won't have to worry about it, lol.
     
  8. robin416

    robin416 Administrator Staff Member

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    I don't know where you're at but having come from a feed store so far you're hitting a 1000. Most feed store Silkies have very little foot feathering and all sorts of faults that you can see from a young age.

    Being a novice doesn't count with Silkies. I have one that kept me guessing for nine months when I could usually spot cockerels at two or three months.

    I'm going to go pick up that female now to see what the V looks like on her comb. She hates being picked up, hates it but she's so mean to the others she deserves some aggravation from me.
     
  9. chippy99th

    chippy99th New Member

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    Haha, Robin, I've got a few that definitely have the same attitude toward being picked up.

    I'm in Arizona, near Phoenix. Called the feed store and they said they get their chicks from Privett Hatchery in New Mexico. I've never heard of it but then I've never ordered directly from a hatchery before. It explains how my feed store that usually has practical breeds ended up with silkie chicks -it was "hatchery choice", so the hatchery decided what breed to send.
     
  10. robin416

    robin416 Administrator Staff Member

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    OK, just picked up the witch, Chicklett, up and checked her comb. It's an inverted U. I checked the two boys out there but their combs are so developed that I can't see if they are upright U.

    And instead of fighting me she squatted the moment I went to reach for her. She's so weird and the reason I chose to keep her when I sold out.

    And yes, it's a U. Not a V. Told you I've been out for quite a while.
     
  11. chippy99th

    chippy99th New Member

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    Mine both look like they have an upside-down U to me, but I'm not quite sure I'm thinking of what you're talking about right so who knows if I'm even looking in the right place? :rolleyes: Guess I'll have to wait and see. Chicklett is a great name, btw.
     
  12. robin416

    robin416 Administrator Staff Member

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    I can't quite tell from your pic but it looks to me like that one breeder wasn't really on to something about the combs. That white looks very much like a cockerel but what he said about the comb is proof that what he saw doesn't hold true.

    I wonder how many females he sold thinking they were boys.

    Chicklett wasn't one sex or another so that's what stuck because I could tell he/she for so long. I just realized that my Head Tuck doesn't come to her name but to the two words I say right after I say her name, sweet girl.
     
  13. seminole wind

    seminole wind Previously seminolewind

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    I thought the white one was a roo. I have 2 white roos.
    aren't show girls supposed to have perfectly round poofs that completely cover their eyes?
     
  14. robin416

    robin416 Administrator Staff Member

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    You're seeing two very young, undeveloped birds. I've seen huge physical changes in birds up to two years of age. That's why they recommended not selling birds to young if all the other things were in place, like five toes.

    I saw a pic of a boy that I sold at 8 or 9 months old when he was closer to two. I could not believe what a stunning bird he turned out to be. He just didn't look like he'd ever be much of anything.

    My Dwarf didn't have a tail until she turned five. Talk about an ugly little bird. Even once she grew a tail.
     
  15. chippy99th

    chippy99th New Member

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    Wow, I guess you do have to wait a long time to see how they grow up! :p I guess I'll ask again in a year or something, lol. Thanks for the info, though, it's very interesting. I thought I had a handle on chickens until I got silkies!
     
  16. robin416

    robin416 Administrator Staff Member

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    Just don't ask me to sex anything that isn't a Silkie because I stink at it.

    Silkies can be very slow to develop compared to many other breeds.

    [​IMG][/URL][/IMG]

    Dwarf before she grew a tail. I really enjoyed having that little girl around, tons of personality.
     
  17. seminole wind

    seminole wind Previously seminolewind

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    I myself look at silkie behavior. as they get older, the females stand more horizontal more often. then, the roos comb's keep getting better while the girls do not. and pointier poofs with streamers. not perfect, but something.

    chippy, you might want to show them anyway just for the fun of showing. then, there's always show people there that can critique your silkies and teach you something.
     
  18. robin416

    robin416 Administrator Staff Member

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    Depends on the person she gets hold of. Some of the Silkie people can't do enough but then there are those few that we all hear about.
     
  19. chippy99th

    chippy99th New Member

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    That is something to think about. I'm pretty curious, so to be honest showing would mostly be about the learning either way.

    I don't think Dwarf is ugly, haha. She looks like a chocolate chip!

    Spice does seem to stand more horizontal much of the time, while Sugar's more upright. Also, I've been looking more at their crests. Sugar is growing in some more streamers, while Spice's is more round and neat.

    I introduced them to my dog today. Boy was he confused! He tried to make friends, but they weren't having it. Whenever he got close, they jumped at him and beat him with their wings. Poor little guy.

    [​IMG]
     
  20. robin416

    robin416 Administrator Staff Member

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    Both did it? A roo protecting his hens will for sure.

    My birds never went after my dogs, probably because they knew about them from day one.