Yes, there is such thing as a professional chicken sexer, and it even pays quite well, if you can overcome the tedious nature and the monotony of the day-to-day job.
While chicken sexing has been around for many years, these days fewer people are interested in the line of work, as it simply is just too boring.
On top of that, it’s also a little gory, as a chicken sexer has to do what’s known as “vent sexing,” which involves basically squeezing poop out of the baby chick to open up its anal vent to check for a small bump that indicates whether it’s male or female.
It might sound easy to you, but chicken sexing is actually a bit of an art and requires a fair amount of training and a lot of skill. If you are interested in being a professional chicken sexer, you’ll need a good eye in order to spot tiny differences in the size and shape of a chick’s sex organs.
Chicken sexers also need to work really fast, as they are expected to sort between roughly 800 and 1,200 chicks per hour, with an expected 97 to 98 percent accuracy rate, which is no mean feat.
As Andrew Large, chief executive of the British Poultry Council, said, “It takes three years to train someone so they develop the sensitivity and dexterity to reliably sex the bird and a lot of people don’t want to spend that amount of time training.”
He added that the job itself simply isn’t viewed as glamorous, given the prospect of having to check the butts of thousands of chickens a week.
“I think the problem is the job itself. You are spending hours every day staring at the backside of a chick. That is not seen as attractive,” said Large.
As it stands, there are reportedly only 100 to 150 chicken sexers in the UK, while not a single new recruit was found in the whole of 2014.