All I have now is french black copper marans. I do plan on adding more birds, was just playing with the idea and was wondering how some people do it...
Has anyone ever got deep into it and actually calculated all the phenotypes and genotypes of them before they actually hatch etc?
Some of my crosses, yes. But that was usually a sex link project, so the results were pretty predictable.Has anyone ever got deep into it and actually calculated all the phenotypes and genotypes of them before they actually hatch etc?
Some of my crosses, yes. But that was usually a sex link project, so the results were pretty predictable.
Other times, I've had a hen be broody for 3 days. I go out and collect the eggs for the day and pop them under her, maybe two days worth depending on how many I have. I like colored eggs so I usually try to set those, but that's personal preference. I get nice surprises that way.
I agree, decide what your goals are. Specific egg color? High egg production? Do you want the birds have a certain feather color? Or do you just like surprises? Do you want meaty cockerels for the table? Lots of ways to go, starting with Marans. You could add blue egger hens to get a F1 Olive egger. You could cross with Leghorns and get lighter colored eggs and higher egg production, lighter bodied birds. You could bring in some cuckoo Marans hens and get sex linked dark egger pullets. It just depends on what you want to do.
And remember, whatever you decide is not what you're stuck with forever. Most of us here who do backyard breeding have had multiple projects over the years. Some pan out and we simply move to something else. Some don't give the results we want, so we try something else. Sometimes a breed pencils out great on paper, but we just don't love them in the coop. Birds are one of the more flexible animals to breed in a backyard setting. As long as you have a plan for the cockerels, you're good. Pullets can always be sold to offset costs if they don't fit your plan.
What other colors/patterns are you interested in adding? Some base colors (silver) are dominant, some patterns are more dominant than others (barring or extended black), some modifiers have both dominant and recessive versions (white).Thanks for the ideas! I'm specifically wanting different feather colorations.