Thursday, August 13 2020


A rare and vital talent

Update: May, 26/2020 - 10:00
Checking the chicks’ to determine their gender: a rare but important job to farms. — Photo

HÀ NỘI — There’s an old adage that will never be solved. What came first? The chicken or the egg?

But there’s another poultry puzzle that can leave many a bird lover baffled. And that is how to determine if a baby chick is male or female.

Yet it seems one woman in Đức Giang Commune, Hoài Đức District, Hà Nội has appeared to crack the problem. She has the unusual talent of being able to spot the sex of a chicken with just a quick glance.

Her skills are clearly sought after. She sometimes can classify the sex of up to 7,000 chickens in one shift earning her between VNĐ 1,5-2 million (US$ 64-85), reported.

Nguyễn Thị Huyền has been assessing pullets for five years. Her work helps farmers decide if the chicks will grow up to be used for eggs or meat.

Huyền spent five months studying to learn how to tell if a baby bird is male or female and the tuition fees alone cost her more than VNĐ 30 million ($1,300) – and that’s not including the chicks she had to buy to practice.

“It may sound simple but few people could learn and master the technique,” Huyền said, adding in her commune her talents are in demand.

“It’s a hard job as we have to stay for five or six hours, suffering from backache and eyestrain,” she said.

And then there is the smell and high temperatures to deal with spending all day with the chickens.

Huyền herself isn’t complaining too much, and for now she is happy to put her skills to good use. VNS

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