Darkest Brown Egg Layers

Discussion in 'General breed discussions & FAQ' started by Hawkster318, Nov 7, 2007.

  1. Hawkster318

    Hawkster318 Out Of The Brooder

    75
    0
    39
    Sep 24, 2007
    North Freedom Wisconsin
    I saw a question asked on another forum, and tried pointing the asker this way. Hopefully she makes it over...

    She had posed the question above, which breed lays the darkest brown eggs?

    I'm more into EEs, so I thought I'd post this here.
     
  2. Poison Ivy

    Poison Ivy Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 2, 2007
    Naples, Florida
    I have some welsummer eggs in my incubator which are very dark compared to the ones my cuckoo marans lay.
     
  3. Poison Ivy

    Poison Ivy Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 2, 2007
    Naples, Florida
    here is a picture of them.

    Welsummer eggs

    [​IMG]
     
  4. Hawkster318

    Hawkster318 Out Of The Brooder

    75
    0
    39
    Sep 24, 2007
    North Freedom Wisconsin
    Poison Ivy,

    Thank you, unfortunately I cannot view the picture as photobucket is blocked here [​IMG] I do appreciate it tho.
     
  5. schmoo

    schmoo Chillin' With My Peeps

    639
    2
    161
    May 7, 2007
    West MI.
    WHOA! those are dark!
     
  6. paganfish

    paganfish Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 15, 2007
    Fleming, Colorado
    Oooh those are nice! Dang! I want those chickens....

    I can't wait for SPRING! LOL!
     
  7. HenHaven

    HenHaven Chillin' With My Peeps

    875
    2
    161
    Mar 3, 2007
    Coarsegold, CA
    Hawkster, think "Hershey Bar" and you've got the color! Those are amazing!!! Can I ask where you got them?
     
  8. Crunchie

    Crunchie Brook Valley Farm

    Mar 1, 2007
    Maryland
    Those Welsummer eggs are awesome!

    I have Marans (Cuckoos), they can lay a nice dark egg--but the genetics are tricky. Breeders are always working to not only get a darker color, but consistent color. That's the real trick--all eggs hatched from one breeding group aren't always going to produce hens that lay that nice dark egg. And the egg color also changes throughout the laying cycle--so, the first eggs laid will be the darkest--as the season progresses, the eggs will lighten, sometimes considerably. After a period of non-laying (such as a molt) the first eggs will again be dark.

    Hatchery Marans aren't (typically) going to give you a correct Marans egg. There is a color chart (see here: http://marans-club.club.fr/echllang.htm#echelle ). If a hen does not consistently lay a #4 egg or above, it cannot by the standard be called a Marans regardless of its breeding.

    Also, Marans eggs are often more of a reddish-brown. Here's a pick of my Marans eggs(this was taken a few days ago, so these are late-season eggs; they will be darker in the spring):

    [​IMG]

    I would think that if you want to breed and want a challenge, Marans are a good choice. If you want a breed with an egg color that is consistent, I'd go with the Welsummers.

    I've heard that Penedesencas lay a very dark egg, I think even darker than Marans or Welsummers. But many don't like to keep them because of their very flighty temperaments. I have no experience with them, but I've been told that they are, er, totally nuts! [​IMG] A breeder I know says he has to keep them in a very quiet, enclosed place and try not to startle them--he says he's actually had birds kill themselves by slamming into walls just because he walked up to their pens.

    And I thought my Polish were goofy! [​IMG]
     
  9. Windy Ridge

    Windy Ridge Chillin' With My Peeps

    546
    1
    151
    Oct 3, 2007
    Appalachia
    Wow, Crunchie! Those are beautiful, too! I'd like to add a couple dark egg layers to my flock, just for variety in the carton. [​IMG]

    There's a breeder not too far away from me that has Marans and Welsumers; his dad has Penedesencas. He told me he won't keep Penedesencas anymore for the very reason you just mentioned: they're crazy-flighty! He leaves them to his dad. [​IMG] I saw the eggs, though, and they were similar in color to the photo of the Welsumer eggs, above, quite chocolate. I like friendly birds, however, so if I get any dark egg layers, I'll go with the Marans or the Welsumers. His birds were sweet and calm, and their eggs were beautiful and dark, too.

    I have the same problem most people on this forum have: I want to keep adding to my flock, and adding and adding and adding and adding and adding...

    [​IMG]
     
  10. Crunchie

    Crunchie Brook Valley Farm

    Mar 1, 2007
    Maryland
    Windy--I bet I know exactly the breeder you're talking about--it's the same one I'm talking about (he did say the Penedesencas were his dad's)!! In West Virginia?? If so, this is the breeder I bought my first trio of Marans from, which is where I got the eggs in that pic above. Drove 7 hours each way to pick those birds up! It was totally worth it. I would highly recommend him if you want Marans or Welsummers. He's breeding some really nice birds.

    I understand the chicken addiction!! I'm really trying hard to limit myself, and focus on just a project (or two...) but it's hard!
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by