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Color an egg with marker: hatch a colored chick?? This from an agriculture teacher...

Discussion in 'Random Ramblings' started by spacecowgirl, Mar 7, 2012.

  1. spacecowgirl

    spacecowgirl Songster

    Jul 30, 2011
    My 14 year old son came home from school today and told me that his agriculture teacher told the class that if you color an egg with a Sharpie marker the chick that hatches will be the color of the marker, albeit temporarily...

    This sounds absolutely ludicrous on so many levels...for one thing, how would the marker seep through the shell? If it did, wouldn't it be harmful to the little developing chick? Sigh...

    Correct me if I'm wrong, but I'm thinking his school may be needing a new Ag teacher.

  2. Matthew3590

    Matthew3590 Songster

    Apr 10, 2011
    Middle, TN
    People do dye the chicks different colors but they inject it into the shell and the colors is like food coloring.
  3. silkiechicken

    silkiechicken Staff PhD Premium Member

    Sharpie ink can penetrate shell to some extent because shells are porous. But to put enough sharpie ink on an egg, to get into an egg, to make an appreciable difference in the feather coloring is a tough call. Sharpie ink is technically nontoxic, so that part should not hurt, but you may risk clogging the pores in the shell. You can color eggs in shells by injecting a water soluble dye solution into the white while the chicks develop during incubation, however, it is risky for the home DIY....or you could just spray them with color post hatch.

    If you search dyed easter chicks on the board... you will find colored chicks to be a VERY controversial and heated topic which cycles through every year at easter time that have to be heavily moderated.
  4. spacecowgirl

    spacecowgirl Songster

    Jul 30, 2011
    Wow...I knew the colored chicks were controversial because lots of people buy them thinking they're so cute and are unprepared to take care of the grown-up chickens, but I really had no idea that the dye is injected into the shell while they are developing!!

    Thanks for the info.

    But I'm still curious about the Sharpie thing....anyone else ever heard of anything like it?
  5. DCasper

    DCasper Songster

    Jan 13, 2012
    Benton, KY
    I could be wrong, but it just sound silly to me...

  6. spacecowgirl

    spacecowgirl Songster

    Jul 30, 2011
    Yeah, I'm really thinking this "teacher" doesn't know what he's talking about.....
  7. silkiechicken

    silkiechicken Staff PhD Premium Member

    I'd send the teacher a note and ask for clarification. I know that I've used a sharpie to color chicks as they hatch for identification purposes. But I've not tried the shell color thing. If someone was hatching leghorns out, a big sharpie making a big blue dot on the side might solve the question at hand. Maybe your son could do it for a science fair experiment. Just need hatchlings that will come out yellow.

  8. Sonoran Silkies

    Sonoran Silkies Flock Mistress

    Jan 4, 2009
    Tempe, Arizona
    Well, I know a lort of folks who mark their eggs using sharpies (I do), and I have yet to see the marks colour the chicks. Also, even if it DID work, it would only show on light coloured chicks; not on dark ones. As stated earlier, enough ink to penetrate to the chick would likely clog the pores enough that the chick would asphixiate,
  9. newfoundland

    newfoundland Songster

    Jul 1, 2010
    This begs the question ,'Why?'. Either this teacher does not know what they are talking about or they are giving what could in the wrong hands be harmful information. Either way parents should protest.
  10. silkiechicken

    silkiechicken Staff PhD Premium Member

    Or start by contacting the teacher to make sure the information got back correctly through the student.
    1 person likes this.

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