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Marans Thread for Posting Pics of Your Eggs, Chicks and Chickens - Page 493  

post #4921 of 8723

Germaine ...  clap   Love the little egg!  You should save it, make a collection of fart eggs!

lildinkem ... thanks so much for posting the pictures! I will see them when I get home from work (can't see them here)!

Resolution ... I enjoy your posts. I am interested in nutrition for my chickens.

I am currently looking for a feed with animal by products in it and soy free, (possibly corn free as well).  I really hate to end up making my own. Do any of you have a favorite feed, and why?

RIP my son, Michael Bonham, Jr. 1972-2013

A son, brother, friend, wrestler, father, Army Airborne Ranger, wrestling coach, and so much more....

A memorial video with some of his (too short) life HERE.

RIP my son, Michael Bonham, Jr. 1972-2013

A son, brother, friend, wrestler, father, Army Airborne Ranger, wrestling coach, and so much more....

A memorial video with some of his (too short) life HERE.

post #4922 of 8723
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Resolution 

I think what I'm trying to impart here is to stop introducing new stock. Work with a closed flock until your closed flock has the best possible egg colour.
This would be true for tinted egg layers as well as dark egg producing breeds. If one is selecting for tail length this would also be the rule- breed for that very specific trait
that distinguishes that subrace from all others. Post catalog hatchery generations of Americans are going to have a real problem with this and this is unfortunate because it leads to that
-the grass is always greener on the other side mentality. Yes, to answer the question regarding exhibition, the French do exhibit their birds and these are competed against one another but the majority of birds exhibited in Marans itself at an agricultural fair I have visited five times now, would not fit any definition of a standard of perfection. They simply produced or were hatched from the very darkest eggs. It is the egg that is in the competition in Marans France- now when one visits Lyon or Brittany, the whole bird is in the competition but the egg shell colour and shape has already been fixed and for generations before superficial characteristics are selected for or against. The trick to enhancing egg colour is to limit genetic diversity not increase it. Small clutches- generally only the first are hatched, and again only of the darkest eggs. One phenotypic trait that consistently bred for in Marans and Poutiou France amongst the true experts of this race of fowl-not incidentally,  each colour being considered its own distinct breed- reddish legs or vivid portions of the leg in salmon or pink are consistently chosen over all else because it is from individuals that carry these demes that produce the darkest roundest eggs. The birds with the most reddish legs may not be the actual producer of the most russet egg but it is from two birds with pink or red pigmented portions of the legs that the best shaped eggs will be produced and the more spherical the egg, the more even the distribution of the pigment. So on par, it is from that stock that the best eggs will be produced overall. Strangely, we also saw birds with the slightest crests, especially in the Bordeaux region (where my sister lives). These birds wander about in the vineyards and rural estates and produce the deepest chickory hued eggs- not the darkest but the most vivid and deep in pigment but by and large these birds had the slightest hint of a crest. Most Marans have longer feathers on their heads than other large dual purpose fowl and it may be that some Marans post WWII were infused with the blood of some other (at the time) exceedingly rare French breed that was crested? At any rate, and in any case, the close selection from limited founders is absolutely key to defining and refining your own heirloom strain. We have so much working against us in the USA because the different colour types, again considered their own distinct breeds in France, have been interbred into one composite or another. Disciplined selection picks up from there. As evidenced by any number of eggs photographed on this site, there are a number of poultiers well ahead in the go forth by day mode. The rest are truly at the beginning phases and if one compares this to the creation of Bonsai one has a very long road to follow and there are no short cuts.

A green egg laying Ameraucana is not a cull. The Americauna how do you spell that anyway? is a North American Quechua and they tend to lay a greenish or greyish egg when compared to some other South American breeds.


This is very interesting: caf
One phenotypic trait that consistently bred for in Marans and Poutiou France amongst the true experts of this race of fowl-not incidentally,  each colour being considered its own distinct breed- reddish legs or vivid portions of the leg in salmon or pink are consistently chosen over all else because it is from individuals that carry these demes that produce the darkest roundest eggs. The birds with the most reddish legs may not be the actual producer of the most russet egg but it is from two birds with pink or red pigmented portions of the legs that the best shaped eggs will be produced and the more spherical the egg, the more even the distribution of the pigment. So on par, it is from that stock that the best eggs will be produced overall.

And I think a while back you may have said that the different Marans varieties (breeds) historically originate from different regions in France? Is there a specific variety that primarily comes out of the Poitou-Charentes region?
Do you by any chance know which regions besides the Poitou-Charentes are best known for Marans and which are best known for producing the darkest eggs? It sounds like Bordeaux for sure. I have never been to France and had to just Google Poitou-Charentes to see where it is.

Barred Rock, Easter Egger, and a small, spoiled flock of BC Marans.
Barred Rock, Easter Egger, and a small, spoiled flock of BC Marans.
post #4923 of 8723

This is an interesting fact and a little disconcerting because the APA's version of the SOP of FBCM's have the legs in slate color

One phenotypic trait that consistently bred for in Marans and Poutiou France amongst the true experts of this race of fowl-not incidentally,  each colour being considered its own distinct breed- reddish legs or vivid portions of the leg in salmon or pink are consistently chosen over all else because it is from individuals that carry these demes that produce the darkest roundest eggs. The birds with the most reddish legs may not be the actual producer of the most russet egg but it is from two birds with pink or red pigmented portions of the legs that the best shaped eggs will be produced and the more spherical the egg, the more even the distribution of the pigment. So on par, it is from that stock that the best eggs will be produced overall.

Happiness is an attitude. We either make ourselves miserable, or happy and strong. The amount of work is the same.
Happiness is an attitude. We either make ourselves miserable, or happy and strong. The amount of work is the same.
post #4924 of 8723
Thread Starter 

Well, that could be a different variety he is referring to Rusty woman

Barred Rock, Easter Egger, and a small, spoiled flock of BC Marans.
Barred Rock, Easter Egger, and a small, spoiled flock of BC Marans.
post #4925 of 8723

Hi heritagehabitatfarms, had to wait till sun up to reply to ya.  I popped these pics off this morning of the Birchen girls and Bruno.  The other pic you see the Black Orps which I have right next to Bruno's pen. 

http://pic50.picturetrail.com/VOL427/739981/21043320/381802435.jpg

http://pic50.picturetrail.com/VOL427/739981/21043320/381802439.jpg

post #4926 of 8723

Yes the colour of the larger scutes- the flat scales on the legs some of the colour varieties is slate.
These were the birds with the most visibly obvious salmon red or vermillion reticulate scales.
http://i9.photobucket.com/albums/a83/PiAmoun/Gallusinae/Wali%20Kukula/birdleg.png
This illustration depicts a Purple Gallinule, a member of the Gruiformes bird order ( Coots, Rails and Cranes).
Consequently, the anatomy of the leg of a Galliformes bird species like the domestic chicken differs.
Reticulate scales continue from the angled join of the leg all the way down to the foot. Reticulate Scales in
Galiform birds cover a much larger portion of the foot and leg than in typical birds.


Reticulate scales in every Marans, regardless of colour variety should be vermillion pink to salmon red.
The one exception is going to the black but even that sub breed exhibits the 'rouge stripe' in many lineages.
I've received word that there is a story about the poule crêtée de coucou de Bordeaux, which is evidently its
Own Breed= my bad.

Regarding those curious birds I've seen about Bordeaux in the countryside near my sister's summer home, I've tracked down their origins.
A few Crevecour "Heart Break" hens from Brittany were evidentially the source of slight cresting of these dark egg laying hens of Bordeaux, which were carried, in the years after WWII, into the farms around Toulouse as well. The original Crevecour founders of this sub breed were carried by a prominent family together with a dozen or so Marans that produced "extraordinarily dark eggs " to a farm deep in the Bordeaux hills from Brittany during the second World War. These were not the only chickens on the property during the families exodus to the south, but the composite of that flock were the only birds present for next thirty or so years,( if not so even now). To be clear, these "poule crêtée de coucou de Bordeaux" are not the darkest egg layers of French breeds and as I've just been informed, not to be considered genuine Marans chickens by many snobbish poultry breeders in France. They do produce what could be defined as the most spherical egg of the Marans Clan and this is a very russet red colour. According to the daughter of the present caretaker ( and great granddaughter of the WWII era caretakers- whose mother, as a small child, was primary steward of poultry during the war-to just a few years ago) original birds already present on the estate- at the onset of the war were a few Gâtinaise hens, no more than two or four (she never said three) a Charollaise cockerel whose hens were destroyed by foxes and a few grey Bresse who were almost certainly eaten by the family before the isolation of the flock during the war and afterward. "There were absolutely no Poule du Marans on the estate before the war", as they were considered too dull and lethargic to survive in the warm climate of Bordeaux.
Additionally, a single Estaires cockerel, four salmon Faverolle hens and two Pictave bantam hens were brought over to the farm from a neighboring estate late in the war or during reconstruction. She believes that they too contributed their genes to their locally celebrated strain of red egg layers.

'The primary founders of the poule crêtée de coucou de Bordeaux flock were nonetheless, Cuckoo and Black Copper Marans hens "that produced the darkest eggs of any in France" and three lovely Crevecour hens, her grandmother's beloved pets'.

There were never Marans roosters nor Crevecour roosters present on the farm and at the onset of the war, the grandmother was quite certain that the Charollaise cock was the only sire of the entire flock before the Estaires cockerel drove him into retirement. Cockerels and very old hens were the only birds butchered for the table as eggs were much more precious a commodity in those days. They butchered the pugilistic cockerels straight away as soon as they were old enough to make it worth the while. After the war, the few roosters that took to the surrounding woodland also escaped butchering but these generally "resembled in every way the rest of the flock". Though i rather suspect that the light carriaged offspring of Pictave and Crevecour hens would be more likely to survive on their own in the woodlands and intuit that these may have been encouraged to stay in the woodland by their young caretaker to avoid ending up in the pot...

The whole village received their eggs from this estate farm for a very long period and there is considerable pride of this flock by their original caretaker. The birds are mostly cuckoo and heavy set, perhaps a bit large and lanky for a Marans, their combs have an odd thickness to them and of course they have the tiny tufts of a crest. Madame claims that a white feather in the center of the rooster's tail is a sign of purity. They have feathered shanks and wide breasts. "They are graceful on the foot and not dull and plodding." I am told the roosters make unusually good fathers, brooding the chicks at all times of the day and night.
I'll get some photos of the birds and post them here. It was interesting for me to learn that even though these birds were 'considered bastards by purists in the north and west of France, two or more of the most elite of connoisseurs had procured her stock over the years to improve their own'.
She insists that the best birds in France are likely to have her flocks blood in them as there were so few Marans that survived WWII. The granddaughter told me to take the last assertion with a grain of salt.
A curious side note, I have noticed that most Marans roosters do have longer feathers on their heads than other heavy breeds, especially over the eyebrow and there is also more feathering around the ears and where the throat meets the hackle, so there may be some truth to this assertion.

I've arranged to import some eggs and will report back if we have any success in hatching from them. Not to worry! IF any eggs are to hatch we will
not mix them into our Marans flocks but keep them by themselves in a closed flock of poule crêtée de Bordeaux. Or Crested hen of Bordeaux or more likely, after the lovely madame passes we will name them after her, though her she insists against it, perhaps a little too urgently...wink I have promised not to mention her name here but they are most certainly fierté de la fille courageuse du Bordeaux- the pride of the Lady of Bordeaux.


Getting back to Marans of western France, the Poutiou region was famous for its Black Coppers. La Rochelle for its Blacks a product of outcrossing with (Géline de Touraine), Marans famous for Cuckoo and Black Copper, though there were also many Salmons about. I hope I'm not misremembering here but Lyon, on the other side of the country, celebrated its  Black Breasted Red (a product of outcrossing with Gauloise dorée) and Alsace  was famous for its Brown Reds which are considered to be by far the darkest egg producers, followed by Black Copper. The Swiss developed the Gold Cuckoo and Birchen, the latter from outcrossing with Hergnies during WWII.


Edited by Resolution - 1/26/10 at 8:50am
post #4927 of 8723
Quote:
Originally Posted by kathyinmo 

Germaine ...  clap   Love the little egg!  You should save it, make a collection of fart eggs!

lildinkem ... thanks so much for posting the pictures! I will see them when I get home from work (can't see them here)!

Resolution ... I enjoy your posts. I am interested in nutrition for my chickens.

I am currently looking for a feed with animal by products in it and soy free, (possibly corn free as well).  I really hate to end up making my own. Do any of you have a favorite feed, and why?


I feed whole oats, and supplelment with alfalfa meal, fish meal, and good vitamins. I have it posted on my webpage: www.sterlingcenterfarm.com

I have lost the computer I did the webpage on so it is not current as to breeds. I no longer have the White Ameraucanas.

Sue

Sue

I don't have gray hair, I have wisdom highlights
blog: http://rarechickens.blogspot.com/
Breeds:  Marans, Coronation Sussex, Light Sussex, Porcelain & Silver Patridge Silkies, Lavender Orps  & Brabanters. Sebastapol Geese & Khaki Campbell Ducks.  Chicks & eggs available

Sue

I don't have gray hair, I have wisdom highlights
blog: http://rarechickens.blogspot.com/
Breeds:  Marans, Coronation Sussex, Light Sussex, Porcelain & Silver Patridge Silkies, Lavender Orps  & Brabanters. Sebastapol Geese & Khaki Campbell Ducks.  Chicks & eggs available

post #4928 of 8723

Sue,  Thank you so much for sharing your poultry diet! I think I am going to have make my own, as well ... to avoid soy and corn. (Organic corn, I may use a bit)

lildinkem ... Thanks for those pictures!

Resolution...
I enjoy reading your posts. I certainly hope you have an excellent hatch on those eggs you import! Best of luck for that! I'm anxious to hear the outcome.

About the village you speak of ... Do they allow visitors to see their stock? If I went to France, could I see their chickens and eggs? (Though it is doubtful I would ever go, I could still dream about it!) ...

RIP my son, Michael Bonham, Jr. 1972-2013

A son, brother, friend, wrestler, father, Army Airborne Ranger, wrestling coach, and so much more....

A memorial video with some of his (too short) life HERE.

RIP my son, Michael Bonham, Jr. 1972-2013

A son, brother, friend, wrestler, father, Army Airborne Ranger, wrestling coach, and so much more....

A memorial video with some of his (too short) life HERE.

post #4929 of 8723

You can see these crested hens in the villages in and around Médoc, especially in the south and east. Locals seem pretty amused that anyone is interested in what they think of as fairly boring if highly appreciated barnyard hens. I've had a few farmers wave at me threateningly, perhaps with concern that I might be some North African with his eye on a free dinner. My French is terrible but they will point you to someone local that knows all about the hens and will help you find some eggs for sale or more generally bread made from the eggs as this is what they specifically bred for- baking eggs.

post #4930 of 8723

I have a question. I have some BCM Hens but no BCM rooster I do have a Cuckoo Marans rooster just wondering what would hatch out it I breed them?

I have Bantam welsummers, Bantam Cuckoo Marans, Bantam Wc black polish, Bantam Olive eggers, MGB, LF Welsummers, BCM, BLRW, LF Buff and Golden Laced polish, LF Sumatras, Bantam Sumatras, d'anvers, CCL, Wild type turkeys RioxEastern, Ringneck pheasants blacks, buff, Bobwhite Quail, Chukars  and bunch of free range birds

 

 

I have Bantam welsummers, Bantam Cuckoo Marans, Bantam Wc black polish, Bantam Olive eggers, MGB, LF Welsummers, BCM, BLRW, LF Buff and Golden Laced polish, LF Sumatras, Bantam Sumatras, d'anvers, CCL, Wild type turkeys RioxEastern, Ringneck pheasants blacks, buff, Bobwhite Quail, Chukars  and bunch of free range birds

 

 
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