I agree about the Marans. I thought I was getting good bloodlines when I purchased a hen about a year ago, but she ended up only laying about 5 eggs while I had her (which was a while), and they were hardly anything to be excited about. Welsummers are actually supposed to have a range of "smooth colored" eggs, and "patchy" eggs (for lack of better terms). I personally love the spots on the deep chestnut colored egg my hen lays. So yes, it's all a matter of preference.