Cuckoo Marans

AnnieFoothills

In the Brooder
Jan 26, 2021
10
45
44
Okotoks, Alberta, Canada
So this year, I am hoping to start afresh with a new small flock. I live in Southern Alberta and one of the hatcheries has Cuckoo Marans on it heritage breed listing. I was going to get some chicks and raise them this year. Boys for dinner and girls for the eggs.
I am not set on Marans as the hatchery also has Orpingtons too. Either way I want a more docile and kinder to each other breed.
Does anyone on the forum have any suggestions or opinions on which breed. I could get both of course, but it involves a full day trip to get them from the hatchery if that is what I want to do.
have a great day all.

Admin, if I have started this thread in the wrong place, let me know.
 

EggSighted4Life

Crossing the Road
Apr 9, 2016
14,231
19,471
822
California's Redwood Coast
Hi there and welcome to BYC! :frowI choose Marans over Orps ALL day every day for a multitude of reasons.. Hardiness and adaptability for starters. Having worked with both breeds.. Marans are faster growing and less prone to genetic things like fatty liver hemorrhagic syndrome. Marans are also better foragers, will blend well into the environment easier than some Orp colors.

Orps are also sassy to flock mates and WAY over rated in the friendliness department.. IMO. Marans just tend to be a little more balanced in their heads.. and some of my ABSOLUTE favorite roosters. noting I have NOT worked with hatchery birds.. and my statements are based on the breeder lines I worked with in addition to the threads I've participated in.. health/personality wise.

You could also get cuckoo Marans females and Orpinton males.. to make you own hybrid sex linked offspring at hatch.. All males will hatch with a white spot on their head and females will be solid colored black sex links. In this way some of us.. sell our extra female chicks to cover cost of raising the males.

Consider going with Wyandottes if available in a variety you like.. NO frozen comb tips, hardy, tasty, docile.. fantastic birds! A true North American breed! ;)

I'm including some comparison charts that may not agree with my personal take or experience.. noting most birds look better on paper than in reality (and land race is over rated AT best).. and YOU have to select the best of the best that will work for YOU.. even among the same breed/variety.. Also note that the rarity stated on most breeds is outdated information.

pickachicken

Chicken Chart

Breeds of Chickens

Hope this helps some.. and also that you have a fantastic adventure! :wee
 

EggSighted4Life

Crossing the Road
Apr 9, 2016
14,231
19,471
822
California's Redwood Coast
I am not sure how hot it gets in your area, but the fluffy Orpington so not do very well in heat :(
Maybe a good time to note the difference between the English style heavy bodied and beautiful fluffy Orpintons.. as you note..

~and~

The American standard.. a MUCH lighter bodied, tighter feathered, not nearly as fluffy or fancy looking.. NOT sure if they grow as slow as English.. that was the deal breaker for me.. but someone did note they had some with GOOD growth rate and it CAN be selected for if you have enough of them and the time/energy.

When I did have heavy birds in the heat of 110 F.. cool shaded dirt spots, misters, ice cubes with a pea, corn, or meal worm frozen inside, etc.. even a cool tub of water to stand in. So if there is a will, there IS a way.. but it is good to be aware if the weather means special challenges. :thumbsup

Cold weather.. ventilate, ventilate, ventilate.. keep humidity down and draft free.. avoid frost bite!
 

AnnieFoothills

In the Brooder
Jan 26, 2021
10
45
44
Okotoks, Alberta, Canada
Hi there and welcome to BYC! :frowI choose Marans over Orps ALL day every day for a multitude of reasons.. Hardiness and adaptability for starters. Having worked with both breeds.. Marans are faster growing and less prone to genetic things like fatty liver hemorrhagic syndrome. Marans are also better foragers, will blend well into the environment easier than some Orp colors.

Orps are also sassy to flock mates and WAY over rated in the friendliness department.. IMO. Marans just tend to be a little more balanced in their heads.. and some of my ABSOLUTE favorite roosters. noting I have NOT worked with hatchery birds.. and my statements are based on the breeder lines I worked with in addition to the threads I've participated in.. health/personality wise.

You could also get cuckoo Marans females and Orpinton males.. to make you own hybrid sex linked offspring at hatch.. All males will hatch with a white spot on their head and females will be solid colored black sex links. In this way some of us.. sell our extra female chicks to cover cost of raising the males.

Consider going with Wyandottes if available in a variety you like.. NO frozen comb tips, hardy, tasty, docile.. fantastic birds! A true North American breed! ;)

I'm including some comparison charts that may not agree with my personal take or experience.. noting most birds look better on paper than in reality (and land race is over rated AT best).. and YOU have to select the best of the best that will work for YOU.. even among the same breed/variety.. Also note that the rarity stated on most breeds is outdated information.

pickachicken

Chicken Chart

Breeds of Chickens

Hope this helps some.. and also that you have a fantastic adventure! :wee
Thankyou, it would seem that the Orp's may not be suited to my geographical situation. I hadn't considered Wyandottes. I may have had one or two of those when I lived in the UK. We had a few spare birds from a local farmer once. The two Albertan hatcheries I have found don't have Wyandottes. Maybe that will be a one for the future. Once again thank you for your input.
 

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