Do Chickens Know Not to Inbreed?

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by Featherybird, Jun 21, 2016.

  1. Featherybird

    Featherybird In the Brooder

    Mar 28, 2016
    California, USA
    I read that incest is okay for chicken breeding, but inbreeding is different as a brother and sister thing. Would a hen let her brother breed with her or not? Just wondering.

  2. sourland

    sourland Broody Magician Premium Member

    May 3, 2009
    New Jersey
    Chickens are not bound by the moral guidelines that we are. I have seen roosters try to breed an old boot. They will readily mate with their mothers, sisters, and even their brothers if desperate.
    2 people like this.
  3. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

    Jun 18, 2010
    Southern Oregon
    While I've not witnessed the old boot scenario [​IMG] it wouldn't surprise me.

    A rooster will happily breed any hen. And a hen will submit to any rooster.

    It's not really incest in animals. It's line breeding, or inbreeding, depending on your management and results. I've bred father to daughter with no issues, and half siblings to each other for a generation. I've never hatched three eyed, two headed, four winged chicks [​IMG]. for one generation, or maybe two, it's not been an issue as far as my birds have been concerned.

    Of course, mating it totally different than hatching. Chickens are much easier to control their reproduction than mammals. Mammals mate once and you've got babies on the way. Chickens can mate all they want, and as long as you pull the eggs, it's no babies for them!
    1 person likes this.

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by