Originally Posted by WildHens
I've hatched black chicks as well from blue and green eggs, but dad was usually a brown egg layer breed.. they grew up to be a lavender color and both laid light blue or greenish eggs..
I don't think all EES have to be chipmunk patterned.. EE to me just means something that lays a different color egg than say brown or white..the chipmunk chicks all seems to have the tufts of feather around their ears or are bearded. .the ones that hatched black never had anything like that tho..more body style of a production bird over an Americauna (know that's spelled wrong)
Originally Posted by RachaelR32
I don't know that much about EE chickens, but I thought that a crossbreed from a blue/green egg would be an EE. The chicks of mine that hatched from blue eggs were black, not chipmonk.
In attempt to add some clarity in breeds and terminology....since some confusion has been expressed.
The term Easter Egger is used as any bird that is a hybrid, or cross breed, with Ameraucana or Araucana blood...that *should* mean directly, closely, descended from an Ameraucana or Araucana, otherwise the term gets pretty meaningless for the simple fact that Easter Eggers do not breed true and by definition, then, are not a breed. That means for the EE hybrid, one parent is either a pure Ameraucana or a pure Araucana, while the other parent can be anything.
Hybrid EE Chicks can look like almost anything, even from the first hybrid generation, but often come out with the wild type (chipmunk look) as that is a common default genetic appearance for hybrids...it's a matter of adding genes back into a broader gene pool to get the original "wild" type. However, if enough dominant genes are present, from either parent stock, the chick can be black, or white, or some other solid color, or a base color with color trim or pattern. It depends upon what the parent stock looked like...Ameraucanas come in several standard colors that can produce chipmunking and patterning as well as those that are solid color, a few dominant....now add the other non-Ameraucana parent with either solid or pattern...and you get the idea. (Genetics for feather color has a lot of factors for determination of base color and patterns).
So down or feather color does not make "EE." What does make "EE" is relationship to Ameraucana or Araucana and the desirable blue egg shell color...otherwise you've just got mutt birds producing normal eggs. If you take an EE and breed to a non-EE, for the first generation, you statistically get 50% possibility of obtaining a blue egg layer and 50% white or brown, depending upon if the other parent were a white or brown layer. Take those chicks and breed to each other, or worse, to other breeds, and you can see how you can end up with a lot of non-blue egg shell mutt layers unless you attempt to follow that blue shell gene closely, which fortunately is dominant, but can be lost if you don't know what you are doing.
So technically, Easter Egger would only be first generation hybrid with a pure Ameraucana or Araucana as the parentage and enough physical characteristics (beard, green legs, pea comb) are clear enough to show the blue shell gene genetic connection.
You can see how hybrid terminology is handled in the commercial hybrid business. For example, a Red Sexlink is only the first generation cross breeding result of a red based roo (usually a RIR) bred to a silver based female (such as a Delaware) to produce the hybrid known as a Red Sexlink.
You cannot then breed a Red Sexlink to another Red Sexlink, or to anything else, and call the results Red Sexlink or a Red Sexlink cross as the sexlinking characteristics (gender identifiable down color) ends with the first generation.. Further generations of RSL are simply backyard mutt or mongrel. (The term "hybrid" was created by the industry so that the image of mongrel was not associated to the sexlinks by the farming industry which had so recently shifted to preference for "pure breeds" vs. the historic backyard mongrel.)
So can't we just say if it descended from a blue egg it is an EE? RachelR32 has noted that problem.... There are other blue egg layer breeds...Cream Crested Legbars and Isbars are two standardized breeds available in America. So the blue egg could mean something other than EE.
I guess technically any blue/green egg layer is ultimately descended from the original South American birds, but these modern breed and hybrid names are what we have now to label and follow those blue egg shell genes.
Why do people care? Becuase it is in attempt to keep track of that desirable blue gene and physical features (beard, green legs, ear tufts, head crests)...so sloppy terminology can make that a lot harder especially for novice keepers who purchase something descended from an EE thinking they will get blue or green eggs, or hatch any blue egg and think they'll get something that has a cute little beard, green legs, and will lay green eggs.
Historically, chickens were kept by small farmers, and they were ALL backyard mixes. Standardized breeds came about around the early 1900's as farmers enjoyed being able to predict the results and outcomes of their birds...you could know that if you raised this breed you'd get good layers or that breed and you'd get good meat for the table.
It will be interesting to see what develops with the EE. Perhaps in time, there will be some sort of standardization for EE.
But for now, there are simply blue-gene utility layers and unless you follow the blue gene carefully, you can sell or cull or breed that gene away pretty quickly.
My (probably poor) attempt at adding some clarity to the EE and blue egg issue and why I got black chicks instead of chipmunk.
Edited by Lady of McCamley - 5/2/16 at 1:47pm