Olive Egger

General Information

Breed Purpose
Egg Layer
Climate Tolerance
All Climates
Egg Productivity
Egg Size
Egg Color
Olive to khaki
Breed Temperament
Breed Colors/Varieties
Breed Size
Large Fowl

Olive Egger chickens are produced from a crossing of breeds. Like Easter Eggers, crossing a blue egg layer or chicken carrying a blue egg gene (i.e., Ameraucana, Araucana) to a dark brown layer/gene carrier (i.e., Marans, Welsummer), you will get a layer of olive colored eggs.

Breeding results can vary depending on what types of breeds are used and if they are pure. Olive Egger chickens will vary greatly in appearance, body type, etc., and are not an official breed with a set of standards. However, they are becoming quite popular with breeders and backyard enthusiasts as a way to diversify egg colors in your egg basket.

(Green) Olive Egger eggs

Olive Egger chick

Olive Egger hen

Young Olive Egger Rooster

There is a thread here on BYC dedicated to Olive Eggers: http://www.backyardchickens.com/t/131131/the-olive-egger-thread/3540#post_8233099
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Latest reviews

Pros: Beautiful sky blue eggs, beautiful unique chicken, big personality, MUFFFFSSSS, BEEEAAARDDDSSS
Cons: Bad egg patterns, has big voice box, enjoys sound of ones own voice, not very hygenic (gets food stuck in muffs and beard)
My olive egger is an Ameruacana mix. She's a pretty crap layer (she gave up laying after two sky blue eggs and now hogs the laying boxes to lay her phantom eggs), and she came home with a bumble foot. She also enjoys screaming her heart out for no apparent reason. Mine is a little on the dumb side, with some difficulty eating (you have to hand feed them, and when they're full, they'll just look at you).

Negatives aside, olive eggers have big personalities and beautiful eggs (when they choose to lay them). They are friendly inquisitive bird (a little too heavy to fly as much as the average leghorn), and enjoy massages and sitting in your lap (a little too much as tehy sometimes fall asleep - once she's on, she'll never leave!). They are also relatively beautiful, and once you've looked into their derpy eyes, you know you're not going to let this chicken go. Seriously, who doesn't want a bearded, muffed wonder!
I would recommend this chicken for kids (please DON'T use this beautiful inquisitive breed for meat)!!!!!!

everything is worth it for the muffs
Pros: Fun egg color to have
Cons: Squawky bird
My olive egger is a Marans/Ameraucana mix from mypetchicken. She is a cruddy winter layer and she makes more noise than the rest of my flock put together. Her sister is the same. It's not all that fair to rate "olive eggers" since different mixes will have different traits but this is just my experience and the particular mix I got. If you're concerned about upsetting your neighbors or if you're trying to hide chickens from your HOA, this might not be a good mix for you. When mine are laying, they are good for about 4 olive eggs per week and neither have gone broody.
Pros: really cool colored eggs, not a cookie cutter breed
Cons: can't think of any
If you're looking for a colorful egg basket, you have to add some olive eggers. Since these birds are defined by their egg color, they aren't a breed per se, but are the result of breeding a dark egg layer with a blue egg layer. Many combinations can be used so the resulting olive eggers can have various types and personalities. For mine, I used a cream legbar rooster and various marans and welsumer hens. The progeny lay from a deep minty green to a beautiful true dark olive.
Interestingly, the mothers of my OE's all started laying between almost six months to over eight months and the daughters (Perhaps because of the legbar influence) were all laying before five months.
I do think the welsumer crosses can be sexed at hatch, just like the purebred welsumer mothers, but unfortunately I wasn't paying a lot of attention to this. I want to hatch more next year and will definitely pay more attention to see if this holds true. if it does, the welsumer cross might have an advantage over the crosses where marans were used.
I also want to try creating some using EEs. So many possibilities, so many colors.
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Olive Eggers actually aren't a breed, and very few have "striped" feathers. Are you sure you have Olive Eggers? If they truly are Olive Eggers, in most cases they're actually bigger than the average laying hen because of their non-hatchery background, however some do have hatchery based parents.
Illia is correct, they aren't actually a breed, they are a cross between a dark egg layer, usually marans, but sometimes wellsummer or penedesenca and a blue/green egg layer, ameraucana, araucana or easter egger.
They can be any color, and type can vary tremendously, I started a line of them I crossed blue ameraucanas with blue copper marans. They were blue, they had feathered shanks with muffs, and most of them after the second generation crossed back to marans, they laid nice olive eggs, some with speckles. They were large birds, but I have seen all types and sizes.
My Olive Egger is my friendliest and most prolific layer...there are times when she lays 15 eggs in 16 days. I also think she is a very pretty bird too.
The olive eggers i know of are def not small. much larger than avg. The ones I have seen are mixed with a jersey Giant.
If you scroll through the pics on the breed information page she is the one standing in the coop doorway. She has a rosey pink breast and golden penciled feathers around her neck now but in the pick she is younger and doesn't have the neck penciling yet. I am going to click the "make primary" button and maybe she will be the primary on your computer I don't know if it works that way.
So I was able to post two more pictures. Neither of them are great since she is always in a hurry to get where she is going but you can see her breast is rosey her head is golden and her body is a blue/brown/grey they are the photos with -6jpeg and -7jpeg as their last identifying characters.
I have one of the barred olive eggers that looks just like a barred rock but with a pea/rose comb. She does look striped. No idea on her parentage. She is a squat, chubby bird, so shorter than the rest of our flock. Her eggs are a smooth khaki green color.
My OE's all are good sized, nothing small about them at all. I would say most aren't barred. If a cuckoo marans were used in the cross, they could be.
I used to have an olive egger named Bonnie, she didn't produce much. They are definitely one of my favorites too.
Once you get them into the coop, leave them there for several days. That will sometimes get them going to roost in the early evening. If I had to take chickens off my roof or out of trees at night, they'd come off with the crack of a .22 short to the head and become low-slow flying soup.

Seriously...try keeping them in for perhaps 2 weeks. Sounds like it couldn't hurt.

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