I need/want to know the breed(s) of my rooster/hen pair of bantams. Here comes the story as background.... apologies if you're the impatient type, but I'm the writer type!
I started out about a year ago with four lovely australorps I got at 13 weeks old, and added two bantams about six months later which I adopted. They had come from a very bad animal hoarding situation before being rescued and were still very thin and feeling pretty sorry for themselves, especially the black and white speckled one. A bunch of the rescued chickens had to be put down, they were in such bad shape. Anyway, they looked both like girls to my pretty inexperienced eye, although when I got them home I wasn't 100% sure about the way the speckled black and white one stood, but they seemed full grown, and a couple of months later they had put on lots of weight and still showed no signs of crowing. But only a few weeks later I was out with them all, and suddenly black/white who we'd named Pepper, suddenly leaned forward and crowed for all 'she' was worth.
Pepper has turned out to be a good natured rooster, although we now have him in a no crow collar which thankfully has successfully dampened his volume. However, all this has left the solitary little girl getting pretty harassed by my rather giant australorps. She's started laying pretty well now spring is well and truly here in the southern hemisphere. I wanted at least two bantam girls so they could kinda stick together. As Pepper seemed to be a very 'active' rooster about his 'duties' I decided to give incubation a go to get her a couple of daughters as friends. They had such a rotten start to life, I'm determined to make sure they thrive with me.
Everything has gone well, (apart from a bad drop in temperature for 8-9 hours, but all eggs seemed to still be alive after it) and I'm on day 19 with six eggs in a hatchery incubator with one starting to rock occasionally, and another six eggs on day 10 in another incubator. I'll sell the chicks I don't want to keep. Also, after reading one of the great threads on here (a sticky I think) about how to tell if an egg you've cracked open is fertile by the bullseye ring, it transpires Pepper is fertilising the australorp eggs too. I wondered if he was managing, as half the time he just slides off their backs, lol....
Anyway, as I will be advertising my chicks in order to sell them, I'd like to know what breed(s) Pepper and his Mrs, who we named Carra (she looks a bit like the colour of caramel), are. He has the most enormous comb and wattles, and both the bantam brahma and pekin/bantam cochin (whatever you want to call them) don't seem to have combs like his. It doesn't seem to meet the classification of any particular comb type really. He's also pretty big, although I haven't weighed him. Carra is smaller of course, and has a fairly normal looking pretty small comb.
I have a suspicion that they could be crossbreeds, they pulled a random mix of about 60 chickens out of this person's backyard. So, help me out here people.
Here's a link to a photo album with them both, since I can't see a way to link the photos directly into this post:
Thanks to anyone who actually read all I wrote and can tell me what Pepper and Carra are. I'm really really looking forward to seeing what the chicks look like with their parents' disparate colouring!