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can a batch of chicks from one mother hen have different fathers ?

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by MrViskers, Jul 29, 2011.

  1. MrViskers

    MrViskers Chillin' With My Peeps

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    i have 2 Lavender Araucanas a 6 month old cockerel and pullet, 1 white Leghorn 4 month old hen and 1 unknown breed rooster most likely a Cochin cross, they are a mixed flock i am in Australia and it is nearing breeding season , i have seen the Cochin cross mating with the Araucana pullet and the Araucana cockerel mating with her as well . The Cochin cross rooster is the leader of the flock no fighting between the 2 males is it possible if the Araucana hen does lay the eggs will the babies be randomly some full Araucana blood or becomes easter eggers . to note i have heard that hens reject the sperm of the least dominant males in the flock
     
  2. Fred's Hens

    Fred's Hens Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

    If you want to determine which rooster breeds your hens, you'll have remove access to her from the other rooster(s). They only way I know of to be sure of the breeding program. BTW, a hen can "hold" sperm for up to 30 days, so if you intend to hatch chicks soon, you should keep that time frame in mind and prepare accordingly.
     
  3. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Chicken Obsessed

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    Quote:I've heard the world is flat too. But I've flown a lot of places and don't believe that one either. Haven't made it to Australia yet. I'd like to.

    A hen does not determine which sperm fertilizes an egg. If both roosters are mating with her, either could fertilize her eggs.

    There are people that have nothing better to do all day than to watch chickens in flocks mating and keep count who does what with whom. I think a lot of these might be college kids collecting data for advanced degree projects, and they may be sponsored by companies that provide fertile hatching eggs. It may sound funny but there is a business reason to study this kind of thing.

    Anyway, they have determined that a rooster that is not dominant will mate with a hen just as often as a dominant one. Some hens may be mated more by one than the other, but each rooster gets his fair share of having offspring.

    Gritsar hatched out some eggs earlier this year that she thought were going to be fathered by her dominant rooster since she pretty much runs two separate but free ranging flocks. Oh, no. Impy had been meeting behind the woodshed with some of Thor's girls. Ranchy can vouch for me that I predicted it.

    Seriously, expect them to be random.
     
  4. Germangirlygirl

    Germangirlygirl Out Of The Brooder

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    Here is a crazy question.... I've read that each hen will lay the same color egg for the rest of her egg laying life. So, just because the eggs might all look the same from the outside - they will all contain something different on the inside if bred with multiple roosters?
     
  5. ozark_chickies

    ozark_chickies Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Last spring we puchased 4 mature old english banty's from a freind 2 roo' 2 hen's. We kept them in isolation for 4 weeks, the hens returned to laying in about a week and a half, we started collecting eggs for the incubator while they were still in isolation. We ended up getting 10 chicks witch 9 were white OEGB and one turned out solid black. we figured out that when our freinds had them they free ranged with his other chickens and one of his roo's was solid black so that is proof a hen can hold sperm for at least 2 weeks
     
  6. silkiechicken

    silkiechicken Staff PhD Premium Member

    Quote:Well... here is a question for you, will a hen lay eggs without a rooster?

    Ok, in case you don't know, a hen like a human female will ovulate regardless of being mated, so when that non fertilized egg is ejected be it egg laying or mensuration, is that egg a different color? Just one has a shell and one doesn't. The rooster has nothing to do with the egg color.
     
  7. gryeyes

    gryeyes Covered in Pet Hair & Feathers

    Quote:They COULD indeed have different fathers and there wouldn't be any way to tell from the egg(s) at all.

    Also, other hens, fertilized by other / a different rooster,may very well lay eggs in a broody hen's nest, which she hatches for them.
     
  8. Gypsy07

    Gypsy07 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    The answer to your question is YES. I have a mixed flock of hens, and two roos. I'm not sure which one, if either of them, is dominant. They were hatched and raised together and they get along just fine. When I watch the flock, both seem to do the same amount of romancing, and when I hatch out eggs, it's easy to see that the chicks come from both roos...
     
  9. BoutrosBoutrosGalusGalus

    BoutrosBoutrosGalusGalus Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:I've heard the world is flat too. But I've flown a lot of places and don't believe that one either. Haven't made it to Australia yet. I'd like to.

    A hen does not determine which sperm fertilizes an egg. If both roosters are mating with her, either could fertilize her eggs.

    There are people that have nothing better to do all day than to watch chickens in flocks mating and keep count who does what with whom. I think a lot of these might be college kids collecting data for advanced degree projects, and they may be sponsored by companies that provide fertile hatching eggs. It may sound funny but there is a business reason to study this kind of thing.

    Anyway, they have determined that a rooster that is not dominant will mate with a hen just as often as a dominant one. Some hens may be mated more by one than the other, but each rooster gets his fair share of having offspring.

    Gritsar hatched out some eggs earlier this year that she thought were going to be fathered by her dominant rooster since she pretty much runs two separate but free ranging flocks. Oh, no. Impy had been meeting behind the woodshed with some of Thor's girls. Ranchy can vouch for me that I predicted it.

    Seriously, expect them to be random.

    http://io9.com/5834529/female-chickens-have-the-weirdest-birth-control-method-ever

    "Chickens have long been known to, at times, eject sperm after doing the deed. What wasn't well established was the underlying reason for what's technically known as "seminal evacuation." But in a recently published paper, a team led by Oxford researcher Rebecca Dean explains that this behavior is, in fact, far from random, and that the tendency for females to jettison sperm is actually a finely tuned mechanism of postcopulatory sexual selection."
     
  10. pgpoultry

    pgpoultry Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I'm always turning up chicks who have been fathered by the 'least likely' roo who seems to be way down the pecking order and never seems to be mating the girls. These guys are usually sneaky, wait until alpha and his buddies have strutted off to have a crowing match, and then 'surprises' the ladies.

    As far as their eggs are concerned...sperm is sperm.
     

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