The job that nobody wants to do - not even for £40,000

There's a shortage of chicken sexers - but is this Britain's worst job?

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You get to work with fluffy chicks, you don't need any qualifications, and you can take home an incredible £40,000 a year.

It sounds like the kind of job that people would be breaking down the door to get, but the UK poultry industry has said it is struggling to find anyone to take it on. In fact, they failed to recruit a single person for the role in 2013, so it was added to the official list of occupations with serious staff shortages.

So why don't people want to be chicken sexers?

It's not the nicest of working environments to start with, plus you'll be there for 12 hours a day.

'Working with animals' is also a bit of a stretch in the descriptive department. You pick up the baby chicks, spend about five seconds staring at its backside to determine whether it's a male or female, and then you separate the genders.

Which brings up another possible explanation of why there might be so few applicants: male chickens are not wanted because they obviously don't lay eggs. As a result, many of the unfortunate males are simply killed.

Need to get it right

To add to the stress, the Mirror reported that you'll be under pressure to get it right between 97% and 98% of the time.

While there's no call for formal qualifications, being able to tell the difference between the sexes at such a young age is a specialist business - especially because they need to do it over and over again at a rapid pace for hours. It means that the training takes three years. A spokesperson from the British Poultry Council told the Metro that not everyone is prepared to take on that kind of commitment.

Is it Britain's worst job?

A survey last year revealed that this is far from the worst job in the country: that honour goes to miners. This has an even higher salary of £40,500, but the fact it is a dying trade in the UK, and that it's hard and relatively dangerous work, means Adzuna.co.uk named it as the worst job in Britain.

Second place went to couriers. They make a decent wage of £30,200, according to the website, but bike couriers have to risk their lives in all weathers, while van couriers have to deal with heavy lifting and stressful deadlines. To add insult to injury, an increasing number of these jobs are going to freelancers who are paid far less - and only paid for successful deliveries.

The third worst job was being a builder's labourer. The website says they are paid an average of £22,200 for their hard work - which is more than many building site labourers are offered in reality. In return, they are asked to do statistically the most dangerous job in the UK.

The fourth worst job was named as journalism, which is odd for a job that's the second most in demand in the country. The website put it in fourth position, because although it pays an average of £28,200, there is enormous competition for roles, the traditional industry is dying, it's a pressurised environment, and since the hacking scandals, it's one of the most hated professions in the country too.

Meanwhile, fifth on the list was Sous Chef, with annual pay averaging £21,256. This salary will seem surprisingly high for many in the industry who are paid far less. In return they have to deal with a stressful and uncomfortable environment - along with long and anti-social hours.

But what do you think, would you consider any of these jobs, and for £40,000 would you take a job as a chicken sexer?

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