Black Copper Marans discussion thread

Discussion in 'General breed discussions & FAQ' started by geebs, Jan 26, 2011.

  1. VillageChicken

    VillageChicken Chillin' With My Peeps

    Quote:Interesting! What do you think makes the difference?

    Roger, I believe by having the hen setting on the ground with bedding you will have moisture and that will help control the heat underneath. I believe you know I grew up on a large Gamefowl farm when I was a kid. MY dad would never think of using a incubator, They had to all be set under a hen.

    That's brilliant. Shouldn't be a problem finding a broody here in Spring. Everyone and their sister goes broody at the drop of a hat out here... my Marans are the worst! They just don't take very good care of the chicks after hatch. Probably won't have the barn rebuilt by then anyway, and the floor of their temporary shelter is all dirt.
  2. math ace

    math ace Overrun With Chickens

    Dec 17, 2009
    Jacksonville, FL
    Quote:Ain't that the TRUTH! I have my first really good broody and it is a partridge rock raising a pair of BCM. The chicks are 11 weeks old and momma still escourts them all over the yard.
    My Marans broodies were done with motherhood by the time the chicks were 4 weeks old. They ( two of them) were horrid mommies!
  3. BarnGoddess01

    BarnGoddess01 I [IMG]emojione/assets/png/2665.png?v=2.2.7[/IMG]

    Quote:Ain't that the TRUTH! I have my first really good broody and it is a partridge rock raising a pair of BCM. The chicks are 11 weeks old and momma still escourts them all over the yard.
    My Marans broodies were done with motherhood by the time the chicks were 4 weeks old. They ( two of them) were horrid mommies!

    You guys are making me drool!!! [​IMG] I WISH mine went broody that easily. [​IMG] I just keep refilling the incubator and filling my basement ....

    Only decent broody I had was a 2 year old Red Sex Link who lasted the full 12 weeks - superb mom. Must be my funky Canadian dew!!! [​IMG]
  4. math ace

    math ace Overrun With Chickens

    Dec 17, 2009
    Jacksonville, FL
    Quote:If my partridge rock decides she wants to do the mommy thing again next year, I will let her. She is about 1 1/2 years old.

    I don't know if I will let the marans do it again. The is the second year for the one marans hen. The first time she killed the chicks as they hatched. Then the one she did let live she didn't mother very long just a few weeks. I would rather raise them myself than have a broody do it 1/2 way for a few weeks. I may let the marans try it one more time, after all she did kill any of the hatching chicks this year [​IMG]

    Next year, I should have some Speckled Sussex or Delawares go broody. I guess I will get to see how good of mommies they are. I am loving this partridge rock hen. She is AWESOME... 11 weeks and still showing her babies where all the good bugs are [​IMG]
  5. hdowden

    hdowden Overrun With Chickens

    Aug 14, 2011
    heres our fbcm supposdly from davis or jeane lines but he has WAY to much color and his tall is crocked. this is the only pic i have if you want to see what i mean by his tail being crocked just let me know and i can take some more pics of him and his girls.


    since they have been laying i have only hatced out 3 to see what they will look like for the most part these are for their eggs only but i do want a better looking roo than this. they are less than a year btw

    is there any way to correct his coloring?
  6. VillageChicken

    VillageChicken Chillin' With My Peeps

    I think most folks on this forum would tell you not to breed any wry-tailed bird, regardless of the color.
  7. fowlman01

    fowlman01 Overrun With Chickens

    Sep 2, 2010
    Sonoma County CA
    Quote:I know I wouldn't breed from one with a wry tail .....even if everything else was perfect. That is one fault that will come back and bite you.

  8. wilmothfarms

    wilmothfarms Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 3, 2010
    Cecilia Kentucky
    Quote:x2 [​IMG]

    Big can of worms...

    I think this has been discussed before, and it mainly comes down to the fact that Marans have attractive eggs and complicated genetics.

    Some folks breed just for dark eggs - their birds will eventually deviate more and more from SOP. They still sell their eggs to folks as true Marans.
    Some folks breed for show - their birds may not retain the genetics for dark eggs. You don't have to show an egg with the hen, and how would you test a roo?

    Hormones have a big role in how a bird colors out. A hen and roo with identical genes will color out very differently. In general, hens will darken up more easily.
    Snowbird has mentioned that most breeders that have a variety of chicken where the hen and roo are at all different, if they want to breed to SOP, will have a separate breeding program for hens and for roos. I believe he called them parti-colored birds. Any self colored birds - black, white, buff etc. would not need this kind of separate breeding pen for hens or roos.

    I believe very few Marans breeders are using this technique at this point. I know Geebs has been breeding for hens and roos separately.

    So a flock of BC Marans in your backyard will rarely produce good hens and good roos consistently. Very dark egg color genetics are just now being studied, and are not well understood.
    There are egg color inhibiting genes, feathered shank inhibiting genes, etc... things that hide the good genes that your birds have and don't allow them to express. Some of these genes are recessive and hide in your flock. Then one year, your best roo and best hen might start producing birds with clean shanks or just stubs for example. What do you do? Start over?

    It is a complicated breed to get everything right. Carnation combs and comb sprigs are also complicated genetically, and hide in a flock until the right combination of two different genes is there. Then it presents. That is why even though the breed has been in the U.S. for years, there are still many issues being cleared out of flocks... and they will continue to persist in open flocks.

    But the process, although challenging, is fun to be a part of. Here in Europe we have a lot of the same challenges, though I don't think we have sprigs here.

    That's my 2 cents on this.

    MATH - thanks for the pics - you got my wheels turning... at 5 am this morning! Great ideas.

    Wow ... so much to learn, and ya'll teach me something new every day, and it seems that things keep changing every time I turn around! How long has it taken you all to learn ALL of this! LOL
    My mind sometimes gets into a muddled mess, especially when it comes to genetics at times when I sit on here reading page after page about it! I think I got something down, then I read what someone else says and it seems like what I thought I knew I didnt really understand so well and then back to that subject I go to re-read! [​IMG]
    Then the standard for this breed just keeps changing! GRRRR! So whats your alls advice to keeping up with the changes,
    how long has it taken you to get this far,
    suggestions for wanting to learn to breed and keep this breed in standard as not as muddled as those genetics get my mind sometimes!
    WHY CANT THERE BE A MENTOR AROUND ME????? [​IMG] Seeing first hand is the way I learn best - I AM hands on with all our farm animals, and sometimes looking at a picture and then running outside to compare it to your bird, just doesnt work. *** ok yeah you probably cant answer that one I was just venting there! :) ***
    What breeders are reputable? (Yes know before you buy!!!)
    Reading this page here and the comments made a lot of sense to me, about someone saying "I've got so and so line" but how far removed are they? THAT made LOTS of sense!
    AND then that brings the question, why cant a breeder who doesnt have "THOSE" lines of birds (or further removed) become a successful breeder - with quality birds, within standard - that can play ball with the other players in the field? Why does EVERYONE want and have to have JUST those lines and SO close to them as possible?
    Can you not make good birds out of a further removed line?
    And whats the best way to keep this from happening (not getting birds from someone that is so far removed down the genetic pool) - how can you NOT become one of those people when you breed Marans?
    Yeah I'm new at this and learning - I dont post a lot and when I do its probably a silly question, but wow, you guys are so chocked full of information! LOVE that - and I guess I'll never know if I dont ask!
    I dont go into something half cocked and unloaded - I have to know the whole kit and kaboodle! Which I think a lot of people with chickens who want to hatch DONT. You cant be a serious breeder without serious knowledge and TIME, TIME, TIME. That I have learned and of course common sense will tell ya that! It seems tho, this gorgeous breed is so much more complicated than others I have seen and read about.
    What makes you GOOD? In other words, what do you all, as a breeder, strive for to get in that same playing field with Breeders like Bev Davis?
    Do any of these questions make sense? Or am i just annoying?
  9. stoopid

    stoopid Chicken Fairy Godmother

    Aug 3, 2011
    Long Island, NY
    These are the same questions going around in my head every single day.
    No, you're not annoying, yes, they make sense. [​IMG]
  10. VillageChicken

    VillageChicken Chillin' With My Peeps

    Quote:The reputable breeders didn't get there overnight. Most of them are what I'd respectfully call "old timers" who have spent a lifetime - some since childhood - combining old school techniques with modern knowledge of genetics to develop a line of one specific breed that gains a reputation for being one of the best. When you think about all the different genes that are necessary to put together a correct bird, you can see why folks would want birds from some of these reputable lines. Though with Marans I don't know that there are really any "proven" lines that produce consistently correct birds more often than not. But these reputable lines have had more of the incorrect traits culled out, narrowing down the challenge if you can start with birds from these lines. Can you produce good birds from "far removed" offspring? That depends on what you've got to start with. You'll probably go nuts if you don't keep your flock relatively closed. But if you've worked with what you've got, and you still can't produce a bird with enough size or proper type, shank color etc. then you'll have to bring in new blood. But by that time - several generations of a closed flock later - you should have eliminated many incorrect traits from your flock if you are willing to cull all but the very best. And you will have learned that your flock just won't produce, for example, a correctly colored hen hackle, or a proper tail set, or proper pale slate shanks. Then you will have a specific set of genes that you can carefully introduce into your flock. You will have learned what traits you don't want to re-introduce back into your flock, and you will be a LOT more knowledgeable and picky about who you purchase from to help your flock.
    Quote:I know some of this is just a rant, but most of us have probably felt the same frustration at some point. I think once you recognize that Marans are so new and so unique, it will be easier to accept that the process will be long and challenging learning process. I believe it STILL is for those reputable breeders. That's why they are on this forum. I don't think any of them has the whole ball of wax figured out. I know some of the long time breeders are still learning about genetics and the role it can play in eliminating large numbers of culls in a breeding program. I think most folks don't have the time and funds to invest in developing their own line, and most folks just breed Marans for fun and because they love the hobby. Some folks who breed champion birds never aspire to develop their own line. Creating a champion bird every few years, and creating a line that breeds true and consistent are two different things entirely. The information out there about marans is relatively small compared to the entire scope of chicken genetics that include all varieties and all traits. I believe it is possible to get most of it in your grasp within a year, if you are diligent to research, ask lots of questions, take good notes if necessary, share what you learn in the process, and find reputable "partners" to verify that you're heading in the right direction. I believe that is what most of us are doing here on BYC.

    I think that often hobby breeders (like me) have "issues" that keep them from progressing more quickly - for example they keep their sweet tempered roos with major faults, or they don't keep good records, or they maintain a layer flock with all their less than desirable hens - which consumes resources, etc. Some start breeding before they have a basic knowledge of the genes involved, and unintentionally breed forward dominant faults into their entire flock, which then takes them several generations to eliminate. I think everyone needs to decide what kind of breeder they want to be, recognizing their strengths and weaknesses, and having realistic expectations from themselves and from their flock. Then it can just be really a really fun and fascinating challenge. Otherwise it's just an expensive means of being frustrated.
    Last edited: Dec 12, 2011

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