Brown Colouring in my Blue Orpington??

Discussion in 'General breed discussions & FAQ' started by Jonny Anvil, Mar 6, 2012.

  1. Jonny Anvil

    Jonny Anvil Chillin' With My Peeps

    Hey Everyone,

    I wanted to share some pics of one of my Pure Blue Orpingtons, He comes from a line of Blues that were breed on blues for a couple I was informed......I acquired a large flock with two roos and 10 hens a year or more back.. When I first got him I noticed one brown hackle feather. His brother is long gone now but didn't show any signs of this.
    This particular rooster has an issue with one of his legs, an injury healed wrong from when he was a youngster... He can get around by hopping, he eats and drinks fine and no one picks on him. He can't breed what so ever, and seeing how he still has a great quality of life we keep him around. I want to use him to fertilize some of my hens, to keep this line going, and to mix into my Black Orp line, I will most likely have to AI his packet into a hen.

    But before I start and use this fellow for breeding... I am rather curious about this Brown/Chocolate colouring he has feathered out.
    Over the summer last year and into this winter I have noticed that this one brownish feather, is not so alone any more. He now has many, a few of the hens that come from this line don't show the same colourings, and so far I have not seen any in the offspring. I just sold all my Blue cockerels a while back, Haven't heard or seen any that have this same colour difference.

    By no means am I an expert so I must ask here... what would cause this coloration in his hackle and back feather?


  2. Tuffoldhen

    Tuffoldhen Flock Mistress

    Jan 30, 2007
    That's what happens when you breed blues from different breeders and not knowing what they have added or is in their breeder birds. That's why top breeders say cullllllllllllllll............... Something has been added down the lines that shouldn't have been in there. Do not use for breeder birds.
  3. Jonny Anvil

    Jonny Anvil Chillin' With My Peeps

    He is from a breeding line of from what I figured out 10 generations back of Pure Blues nothing has been added to the mix.
  4. speckledhen

    speckledhen Intentional Solitude Premium Member

    He looks really brassy. My own blue Orp rooster becomes brassy just before he goes into molt. Then the new feathers are blue again and become brassier the older they get. Blues do tend to that when they are out in the sun anyway. Yours may be more brown than actually brassy, though.

    You can see the brassiness starting to come back on my Suede here in this pic from today--the pic in the avatar was when he was less than a year old. He's over 5 now.

    Last edited: Mar 6, 2012
  5. Jonny Anvil

    Jonny Anvil Chillin' With My Peeps

    My word, what a gorgeous Bird... I really like him and you say he is 5 years old? Wow that is amazing.
    I am not sure how old exactly my guy is, I know under 5 years. I have had him 2 now.

    I can see the brassy colour change in him as well, not as strong as in mine but it's there. I know he is about to start his moult, so perhaps he might shed some of this colour and regain his blue.

  6. Fat Chick

    Fat Chick Out Of The Brooder

    Feb 27, 2012
    North Coast
    Your roo doesn't have brassiness, he has gold leakage. Best not to breed him. You can improve you blue flock by using a black roo. It will supposedly give the blue more defined lacing.
  7. Jonny Anvil

    Jonny Anvil Chillin' With My Peeps

    Interesting... Gold Leakage. Any idea what would cause this?

    I have been breeding my Black Roo over my Blue hens and I have seen the more defined lacing in the hens for sure. I sold a few to a friend of mine, kept the parent stock. All the offspring that came from the black roo over the blue hens have some very nice lacing as well as they have a very dark blue head.
  8. speckledhen

    speckledhen Intentional Solitude Premium Member

    That's sort of what I was thinking when I said "Yours may be more brown than actually brassy, though". Base color leakage is common with blacks and blues and it will pass on genetically. I used to have it in my BBS Ameraucana rooster, who would pass it to both blue and black sons, though certainly not all of them.

    Thanks for the compliment on my big old Suede. He has his faults, but you cannot match his temperament in him or in his sons. I wouldn't have a mean rooster, especially a 12-14 lb one, no matter how perfectly he matched the Standard of Perfection. Temperament is heritable. He turned 5 years old in January. I hatched him here, along with the redhead hen behind him.
    Last edited: Mar 6, 2012

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