How to Sex a Peacock Chick

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Although determining the gender of peachicks is difficult, telling the difference between the adults is a piece of cake. Male peacocks are a synonym for beauty and style because of their dazzling tail feathers. Female peahens, on the other hand, are fairly plain birds. Since chicks look pretty much the same, it takes some sleuthing to determine whether an individual bird will grow up to be splendid or ordinary.

Leg Length

Unless you want to go the DNA testing route, sexing peafowl chicks is more of an art than a science. If you are trying to sex chicks born in the same clutch, compare leg lengths. Males generally have longer legs than female chicks. If the chicks aren't siblings, the leg length comparison might not be so accurate. When blue or green peafowl start feathering, the amount of coloration and tail feather development will tell you whether your chick is male or female. That's not true of the relatively rare white peafowl. White peafowl chicks look pretty much the same until the age of 2, when males develop the beginnings of tail featherings.

Outer Primary Feathers

The outer primary feathers can give you a hint as to gender. These don't develop until the chicks are older, but still under the age of 1 year. The male peacock's long tail train doesn't fully develop until about the age of 3. The more colorful the outer feathers on the chick, the more likely it's a boy.

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Author

Jane Meggitt has been a writer for more than 20 years. In addition to reporting for a major newspaper chain, she has been published in "Horse News," "Suburban Classic," "Hoof Beats," "Equine Journal" and other publications. She has a Bachelor of Arts in English from New York University and an Associate of Arts from the American Academy of Dramatics Arts, New York City.

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