advice needed: Culling out bad genetics in my flock.

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by HeatherLynn, Oct 21, 2014.

  1. HeatherLynn

    HeatherLynn Songster

    May 11, 2009
    Kentucky, Cecilia
    We are in a bit of a downhill slid. A couple years ago I introduced Marans to my flock. I paid premium prices but these are not premium birds. I have had nothing bug genetic issues in my hatches and birds with a weak immune system. Egg bound and sour crops too. Only ever with the marans. All my other birds are fine. Problem is as older birds passed I have kept up my numbers with marans. Great layers but gah always something wrong. Every hatch I will lose about half of those egg that hatch. Crossed beaks and deformaties.

    So My maran roo is meeting mr axe and the girls will slowly be phased out. I plan for now to focus on the full blooded ones and let the mix breeds be. It seems with the mixing I still get a fair bird. I think. Should I consider weeding these out too? I think I need to start over a bit. Opinions on better breeds. I do have a breeding trio of lavender orps that I was considering putting in the breeding coop.
  2. chooks4life

    chooks4life Crowing

    Apr 8, 2013
    I think you're right on the money there... Weed them out. Personally I wouldn't persevere with them, even if the half-breds looked alright, you don't want that stuff persisting indefinitely into your (and their) futures.

    What a terrible bunch you must have gotten, that sounds a bit steep!

    If you still like Marans, surely a better breeder can supply you with truly quality birds. Your experience there sounds a bit extreme, I don't think you're too likely to repeat it. But I'd totally understand if you could no longer stomach the sight of them, lol.

    Best wishes.
  3. speckledhen

    speckledhen Intentional Solitude

    I must agree. Sometimes, you have to just wipe the slate clean.
  4. lazy gardener

    lazy gardener Crossing the Road

    Nov 7, 2012
    It sounds like you're not 100% truly settled, in love with a specific breed, but want to have a breeding program to produce some quality birds of a specific breed. What are your criteria for what makes the perfect bird FOR YOU? Take that info, and do a search of the breed options available, then when you narrow down your choices, check out the breed clubs for those breeds. Hopefully, you can find a breeder near by who has a strong healthy gene pool for you to draw from.
  5. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted

    Jun 18, 2010
    Southern Oregon
    I can't imagine having all those problems [​IMG]. With all those issues, I wouldn't even keep them as mixes. Get rid of them, and good riddance. Start over with some healthy stock.
  6. nayeli

    nayeli Songster

    Jan 18, 2014
    You like chicken? LOL! I'm sorry but those should all be turned into food, you don't even want to sell them.
  7. Mrs. K

    Mrs. K Crowing

    Nov 12, 2009
    western South Dakota
    So odd, Donrae and I were just talking on a pm, how sometimes you think you are going to like a breed, and then you don't. With me, it was domminiques. I was sure that was the way to go..... but I really don't like them. I agree with the others, cull and replace, I am thinking strongly of going back to more BO flock. I have never tried the darker colored ones, but think I will next year.

    Anytime people breed to enhance a single trait such as the chocolate brown eggs, a lot of deformities show up.

    I did try Sandhills preservation for some higher quality birds a couple of years ago and was pleased.

    Mrs K
    Last edited: Oct 26, 2014
  8. speckledhen

    speckledhen Intentional Solitude

    Very true. I did not care for the Speckled Sussex I had, though I thought I'd love them. Didn't much care for the personalities of the Welsummers, either. They were just bland to me. I accidentally ended up with two Barred Rock pullets (long story) though I had not planned to get them and I fell in love with them; now, they are my favorite. So, you have to try things to know what you like and what works for you. [​IMG] There's a chicken breed for everyone.
  9. NewToTheFlock

    NewToTheFlock In the Brooder

    Sep 11, 2014
    Quinlan Texas
    Mrs. K, just out of curiosity, what were your issues with the Dominique's? I'm new to the chicken world, so my experience is minimal.
  10. speckledhen

    speckledhen Intentional Solitude

    I also wanted to say that you can have a bad experience with hatchery stock and then get the same breed, the true breed as it was meant to be from good stock, heritage lines if it's a heritage breed, and have an entirely different experience with them. I did with Delawares. So, it may not be the breed, per se, but the quality of what you get as well.
    Last edited: Oct 26, 2014
    1 person likes this.

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