Author Topic: Wheaten chick down  (Read 420 times)

Jessica Rodgers

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Wheaten chick down
« on: July 04, 2022, 11:04:27 PM »
I was re-reading the info posted under the pinned topic of chick phenotype and John Blehm mentioned something about hopefully breeders would be taking notes as the chicks grew/matured from the light yellow chick down vs the darker yellow chicks. Has anyone done this yet?
I recently hatched out a handful of chicks from a cock bird of a different line as a side project and I hatched a couple of these really light creamy chicks from him. I’m curious if there is any correlation between the shade of yellow down and their adult plumage. These chicks will receive wing bands soon so I’ll be taking notes as they mature. I’d love to compare notes if anyone has done this already.


Photo with the  darker yellow chicks in back and a lighter yellow chick in front.



Mike Gilbert

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Re: Wheaten chick down
« Reply #1 on: July 05, 2022, 01:27:08 PM »
All I can speak to is the experience I've had with my own lines of wheaten bantams.   Different lines may yield different results than mine.   In mine, the very light downed chicks resulted in light creamy females and darker than desired males.  Extreme sexual dimorphism.   So why don't you keep track of yours and let us know how they turn out?   Thanks for being curious - that is how we learn.
Mike Gilbert
1st John 5:11-13

Jessica Rodgers

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Re: Wheaten chick down
« Reply #2 on: July 12, 2022, 12:49:57 PM »
Will do, chicks are wing banded and notes were taken.  8)

Michael Muenks

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Re: Wheaten chick down
« Reply #3 on: July 13, 2022, 10:48:25 AM »
I find my best wheaten adults start out as chicks with a few black spots in their down.

Jessica Rodgers

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Re: Wheaten chick down
« Reply #4 on: January 02, 2023, 05:11:28 PM »
Just thought I’d update this thread since the chicks are almost finished feathering in and are about 6mo old. I’m not noticing anything different in how the cockerels look. The pullets from the light chick down however, are feathering in a darker shade of wheaten. The pullets from the darker chick down are feathering in lighter wheaten.

Russ Blair

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Re: Wheaten chick down
« Reply #5 on: January 02, 2023, 08:02:02 PM »
Thanks for the follow up. Interesting that your line of large Fowl are opposite to Mikes Bantams.
S.E. Michigan

Russ Blair

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Re: Wheaten chick down
« Reply #6 on: January 08, 2023, 10:49:43 AM »
I just want to ask a quick question. How is the fluff/down color? I was told by Mike long ago that they should have a grayish undertone. I can attest the gray downed Wheaten seem to always have better tail color and wing color at least in the females. I am just wondering if the lighter chick down had any  correlation to the down color?
S.E. Michigan

Mike Gilbert

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Re: Wheaten chick down
« Reply #7 on: January 08, 2023, 01:57:07 PM »
I just want to ask a quick question. How is the fluff/down color? I was told by Mike long ago that they should have a grayish undertone. I can attest the gray downed Wheaten seem to always have better tail color and wing color at least in the females. I am just wondering if the lighter chick down had any  correlation to the down color?

I believe Russ is referring to adult females, not chick down.   Yes, I look for a gray undercolor on the back behind the hackles in adult wheaten females.   You will seldom find it on  Blue Wheatens or Splash Wheatens however.
Mike Gilbert
1st John 5:11-13

Russ Blair

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Re: Wheaten chick down
« Reply #8 on: January 09, 2023, 04:21:07 PM »
Correct Mike, the undercolor on adult females.
S.E. Michigan

Jessica Rodgers

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Re: Wheaten chick down
« Reply #9 on: January 10, 2023, 12:26:56 AM »
I just want to ask a quick question. How is the fluff/down color? I was told by Mike long ago that they should have a grayish undertone. I can attest the gray downed Wheaten seem to always have better tail color and wing color at least in the females. I am just wondering if the lighter chick down had any  correlation to the down color?
Honestly I haven’t looked that closely I’ve been busy with a baby boy. I’ll be getting my hands on them in the next month or 2 and culling some so I’ll take a closer look then and update here on what I see.


Thanks for the follow up. Interesting that your line of large Fowl are opposite to Mikes Bantams.

I was a little surprised myself at the results! Glad I marked them as chicks. I always enjoy looking into these little details. It’s a challenging variety but I always enjoy a good challenge  ;)