BCM Roo x Red Selinks - 3 generations and they're a new BCM?

Discussion in 'General breed discussions & FAQ' started by NTBugtraq, May 21, 2015.

  1. dekel18042

    dekel18042 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 18, 2013
    Quote: I find several facets of this thread interesting. If you can get the dark marans' eggs from what you are doing, it would be interesting for several reasons. I got several marans hens with the goal of making olive eggers, (I love adding new colors to my egg basket.) which I have done. I have an OE rooster that looks very like a BCM, even to the copper feathering in his neck.
    My marans hens are nice birds, beautiful, and lay wonderfully dark eggs (Not black but dark) but.......they are the poorest layers in my flock. The colored eggs do make up for the number, I guess.
    Now my question is, will the OE's lay more than their marans mothers? And if you cross your marans to the production birds, down the line will you get hens that lay the dark marans eggs but lay more eggs than the pure marans? I have thought of keeping the rooster and breeding back to the marans hens to see if I still get dark eggs but better layers.
    There are so many projects out there just begging to be done. (I'll admit to being curious. I usually have some project or another or several going on.)
  2. NTBugtraq

    NTBugtraq ex-Surgeon General

    I've been told that my newest chicks, now 3 weeks old, will be prolific layers...
  3. enola

    enola Overrun With Chickens

    The reason Marans eggs are so dark is because they don't lay as well as production bred hens. At the beginning of each laying season, Marans hen's eggs are the darkest they will ever be. As the season progresses, each egg will get just a tiny bit lighter, by the end of the season, there is a marked difference.

    My Marans hens laid so poorly, I couldn't justify keeping them in the laying flock for egg sales either.
  4. NTBugtraq

    NTBugtraq ex-Surgeon General

    I used lighting to keep daylight at maximum throughout winter. It seem to work. Have you tried that?
  5. enola

    enola Overrun With Chickens

    My hens laid every other day, if I was lucky. Lights in the winter didn't change their lay rate.
  6. seventreesfarm

    seventreesfarm Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 14, 2012
    Everson, WA
    My marans have all been fairly decent layers. But they get a lot of forage, plus kefir every few days for extra protein. I won't have the production birds in my flock any more. They lay great the first season, then they're done. Not even good for soup.
    But a lot of the heritage breeds, especially dual purpose, aren't bred for production like they used to be, so I guess I'm making my own breed.

    This season I will finally do some trap nesting so I can cull the poor layers, plus I can do some pair matings with my marans roo and hens with the darkest eggs. I've had good luck breeding dark olive egg layers with a maran roo. I gotten a couple of hens that lay a dark bronze egg with dark brown spots that is really cool looking.

    Marans roos can be a little passive sometimes though. The hen ratio has to be a little lower than for a more aggressive roo.

    I have one older hen that is a maran x barred rock that lays really well. Some of my marans x olive eggers are nearly daily layers. I guess there is something to the hybrid vigor theory.
  7. NTBugtraq

    NTBugtraq ex-Surgeon General

    I have an abundance of goodness for my chickens to eat all around me, but between the chickens and that abundance are my 4 dogs. Since they (the dogs) did not grow up with chickens, they see them as prey...I have tried to mingle them, and it just doesn't work. No deaths, but my Roo has no saddle feathers anymore. I can use my bagger on some areas of grass (that are actually mostly weed) to get them some clippings per week, otherwise they're left with the weeds I pull from my garlic beds (I have 3000 sq.ft. of garlic beds, so they get some weeds every day). At least I ferment the feed and add black oil sunflower seeds...I definitely get more eggs the day after a good combo feed.

    I have to look up trap nesting, I haven't looked into it before. I have pullets and birds in their 3rd season, so I will want to be culling as this season closes.

    What is a reasonable Roo:Hen ratio anyway, if you have an idea.

    My chicken-pro friend was here yesterday and she mentioned the hybrid vigor theory too...I didn't quiz her too much on it (I ask her so many questions every time I get worried she will get put off), but I understand that my hens from these new sets will lay more prolifically than their predecessors. Not sure how long that goes on for, but I sure won't complain if its true.

    BTW, I have been trying to do the reading on genetics, but I have to admit that's really gotta be a winter sport. I've been trying to learn the characteristic of my 19 3-week-olds (wheaten, barred, splash, birchen) and its amazing how even something as trivial as markings is such a huge topic...then add color, and wow... Add cutting and splitting 6 bush cords, planting, making new drip lines...by myself, I've got a pretty full day at my age...[​IMG]
  8. enola

    enola Overrun With Chickens

    Theoretically hybrid vigor works best when you cross two pure breeds.

    I think if you are planning on breeding back to BCM for several generations, hybrid vigor won't be at work here.

    Looking forward to someone correcting me if I am wrong......
    Last edited: Jun 6, 2015
  9. NTBugtraq

    NTBugtraq ex-Surgeon General

    Enola, since your dare hasn't reaped a response, one could assume it means you were right...but you didn't know if you're right when you said it....;-]

    So, I'll offer an alternate statement of your theory to see if it gets any response.

    Does anyone have any facts on "hybrid vigor"? If not, then any theory of that theory is even less of a theory (e.g. it takes a cross between purebreds is less factual than hybrid vigor).
  10. 3riverschick

    3riverschick Poultry Lit Chaser

    May 19, 2009
    western PA
    My Coop
    It reads to me like your problem is fading hybrid vigor. The book I referenced in post 13 explains the results of fading hybrid vigor and how to breed to avoid it . With a time tested breeding plan illustrated and explained.
    This plan can also be used tor restore fading hybrid vigor.
    Vigor is vigor whether it comes from maintaining it in one's own gene pool or seeking it out by adding new "blood". Judge Card's plan can be used for either. The neat thing about this program is how it can be used within a strain and (with wise selection) keep on indefinitely without outcrossing to a different strain, variety, or breed.
    Take time to read his book. It's short and so full of wisdom. I go back to it repeatedly when I have questions.
    Best Regards,
    BCM's aren't the only dark egg breed. There's Welsummers and Pendescendas too.
    Last edited: Jun 9, 2015

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