Originally Posted by TillyPeeps
It sounds very exciting.
Cannot believe that spring chicks are coming soon! I prefer to start chicks in Feb or March, since we haven't had electric in the coop yet and they will need to stay indoor until warm weather comes. I'm trying to convince DH to pick up the chicks from you if you have all the chicks we want at the same time. I would like to have a Rhodebar, a Bielefelder, a Rees legbar, and a California Grey pullet chick. If you'll have a green egg layer, I would love to have her too.
I hope to have all of these, though sexing a Cali Grey takes about 2 weeks, I think. That is from my experience with Barred Hollands and the phenotype should be similar. I plan to raise a few CG's as replacements for my Black Sexlink producers. I need black barred hens that lay white or blue eggs. Since there are no blue egg laying black barred breeds, I'm also thinking about creating them instead of pure CG's. I would do that with a CCL cock over CG hens. Though it's not clear to me if this will be any better than straight CCL hens for making next year's sexlinks. Still mulling this over in my mind, so I most likely will go with some pure CG's.
In my experience, the CG's are as flighty as a typical leghorn, more than CCL's, and much more then RB's or Bielefelders. I don't expect them to be very popular as purebreds, but I will certainly keep you in mind with them. The pullets are less than 5 months old now, so I really don't expect them to lay for another month or so. When I setup the pen to breed pure CG's I will let you know and if you are still interested, I will make sure to hatch all the others at the same time.
I have some CCL's that are laying olive eggs instead of blue. They will be my "autosexing green egg layers". Last year's olive egger cross was Welsummer to CCL roo and the pics I have of those hens look very much like pure CCL's. I'm sure those were all sold as chicks, but the pure CCL's and Welsummers were in adjacent pens and there was some accidental mixing, so perhaps a Welsummer roo had a tryst with the CCL hens and I hatched them expecting pure CCL's, but got Olive Eggers instead. I will only be selling chicks from the blue eggs as pure CCL's, but the others should make great layers of green eggs.