Originally Posted by tydempe
So I was wondering, if I have my varieties mixed, say blacks with whites, and I wanted to separate a pair to breed, how long should I wait before I incubate the eggs to insure the eggs are of a pure variety?
I'd like to start breeding, but I know next to nothing about the program involved.
Is it even ok to mix varieties?
Any help/advice is very much appreciated.
Wait 3 to 4 weeks . Crossing varieties successfully should be done with a solid plan and goal. It will take a bunch of generations to succeed with that vision. because there are a lot of sex linked genes I poultry we don't see in mammals like dogs.
Now choose one color and variety. veteran breeders will tell you this is wise because of the number of birds you need to raise to make progress. Choosing multiple breeding projects lowers the number of birds per project you can raise and lessens your chances of success in each. Basically one needs to raise 10 chicks to get one show quality bird if you are starting with high quality birds. Last season I raised 42 Light Sussex chicks to 4 months old. There were 5 show quality birds in the group. You can see how many chicks you would need to raise of you had multiple breeds.
Then you need to decide what your goals are for the flock. Show? Pets? eating? Eggs? Once you decide that then you can pick a breeding program.
If you are going for show quality, unless you already have high quality birds, you need to replace them with high show quality birds. Because of the amount of sex-inked genes in poultry it takes way too long to grade up pet quality poultry to show quality. It will cost you way more money to try than it will to find a top breeder and buy a trio (2F,1M) or a quad (2F, 2M) to found your flock.
Make sure you tell the breeder you respect their work and want to line-breed on it. That you need "foundation quality" birds which can be line-bred.
Listen to the breeder of your birds for the next 2 breeding seasons or until you figure out how the birds are inheriting from one another. Always respect their opinions as they created the strain.
A mentor is a very valuable thing, smile.
Come on over to the heritage Large Fowl Phase II discussion group. It's purpose is to help folk who want to breed a heritage large fowl breed get started. To help them decide on a breed if they haven't . To help them make contact and obtain high quality birds from esteemed breeders.