Hello Everyone! A few weeks ago I posted some photos of a new rooster that I bought from a local farm and an Olive Egger hen whose eggs I wanted to hatch. I admit, I am interested in green and blue eggs. My chickens are not pure breed chickens. I study up on correlations and genetics and I make educated guesses. I thought maybe this rooster has some blue egg potential because of: small comb, feathered shank and outer toe, and slate legs. I know the hen has a blue egg gene since she is an Olive Egger. Photos of the breeding parents follow. Note that as the photos progress, the broody Mama is a different hen, similar to a Rhode Island Red. Also, I decided to hatch two eggs from an EE hen I had who is particularly beautiful and lays an egg a day. Here are the genetic parents from which I hatched four chicks.
The chicks from the above two birds are black with white or yellow chest and belly. They all had smaller white or yellow areas on their wings, faces, and underneath. They all had feathered outer toes and one may have a feathered middle toe. They have black eyes and black and pink legs and toes. Their beaks range from black to black with orange areas. A couple of photos follow. They hatched around June 30 and it is now July 11 so they are eleven days old.
The black chicks seem to have the most traits from something like a Black Copper Marans, and I know that the Olive Egger Hen had some BCM genes. But wait, there is the wild type chick - and that is because I also hatched two eggs from a lovely EE chicken which is pictured below.
Sammie is the Genetic contribution for the two wild type chicks. One of these has willow legs and feathers on the outer shank and toe. All of the chicks have smaller combs so far. I am thinking I have blue egg genes expressed somewhere in these new chicks. Following are a few more chick photos.
It is now July 11 in Maine. November 30 will be 16 weeks from now. If I have someone laying by then, it will be a surprise! If not, it may be spring before these little newbies are laying eggs, but whenever it is, I will be sure to post a follow up article with egg colors. I do free range my chickens, in the Maine woods, so I hope everyone survives, especially the rooster, so I can do a line breeding with these chicks next summer. Incidentally, my assessment so far is at least four hens from six hatched eggs, so I feel fortunate. Stay tuned for follow up articles. My goal is one every two weeks or so through the development of these chicks.
*Photos should be assumed to be copyrighted.