Does hen or rooster (or both) determine egg size and production.

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by chickkrzi, Jan 24, 2015.

  1. chickkrzi

    chickkrzi Songster

    Dec 8, 2011
    Waco texas
    I have a 3 yr oLd RIR hen that lays egg anywhere from 75g to almost 90g eggs she has just finished her molt and Laying in upper 80 grams. I got her from ideal poultry along with 5 other hens and 2 roosters. The others do lay smaller eggs averaging mid 70 grams. She does have one other sister that will lay one in the lower 80s once and a while I have a small scale breeding pin I put her and her sister in with one of the roosters I also got from ideal at the same time. I set 10 eggs. Hatched 8 of the 10. Out of the 8 I had 3 with bad leg deformities. Out of the remaining 5 I only got 3 hens. Now that those hen are almost 1 year old next month, they have yet to lay anything more than a upper 60 gram egg. And something else is there egg color is a really nice looking dark brown. I was always told (by my grandmother) that the hen would pass on the egg size and production to the next generation. And the rooster would pass on egg color and we'll as vigor. And as a young laid I watched her use this systems with great success. So.... has anyone else have any enlightenment HOW THE HECK DOES THIS STUFF WORK!!! Only thing I can come with is she must have been a breed that Is closer a heritage breed?

  2. ThePRfan

    ThePRfan Songster

    Sep 27, 2014
    Not neccasarily.

    A hen has a system that makes the eggs.They can't even determine egg size,nor color.
    Really,genetics,breed is what does this.

    For example,a EE.
    This breed is bred with several other breeds (Not gonna list all,but 1),1 could possibly be the Red Jungle fowl,which explains rose combs....
    Are you understanding more?
  3. chickkrzi

    chickkrzi Songster

    Dec 8, 2011
    Waco texas
    So your saying the hen has no control of her offspring egg size, color or production capabilities? Then is it the roosters genetics that controls these characteristics?
  4. ThePRfan

    ThePRfan Songster

    Sep 27, 2014
    Characteristics is a whole different ball game.

    Yes,the mom and dads personalities will have effect on the chick.
    again,gentics and breeds.
    Yes she has no capability of her offsprings egg size.
    The egg system prepares a perfect egg,so it can store the chick in it.So yes,she has no control of her egg size,nor egg color,comes natural from other breeds.
  5. Mrs. K

    Mrs. K Crowing

    Nov 12, 2009
    western South Dakota
    And another factor, as you got them from a large producer, more than likely even though you got them as a group, they are not probably all that closely related.

    Generally speaking, many chromosomes make up each characteristics. Hatchery birds tend to have a lot of genetic variability. When you crossed them, some undesired genetics were expressed.

    If you want to continue, you probably need to get a much higher quality birds that are much more closely related to start with, and then breed very selectively. The more closely they are related, the more genetics will be the similar to the same, and the greater increase in likelihood you will get traits that you want.

    However, pullets never lay real large eggs until producing for some time, and each year a hen lives, her eggs get bigger.

    Mrs K
  6. chickkrzi

    chickkrzi Songster

    Dec 8, 2011
    Waco texas
    Thanks, that just what I was afraid of. Too many ingredients in the soup makes it even more difficult to duplicate. Buy the way the one hen I'm trying to reproduce started laying large egg very early in her first year. As a madder of fact I thought I was going to lose her because she became egg bound. But we was able to pull her though that problem. One of my problems is finding some RIR in my area that are not from Ideal poultry. seeing they are just an hour drive, it seem that that's all we have around.
    Last edited: Jan 24, 2015
  7. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted

    Jun 18, 2010
    Southern Oregon
    I do know both parents contribute to egg color, there are solid genetics behind that.

    I believe both parents contribute to production. Otherwise hatcheries wouldn't care what rooster they used in their high production crosses like sex links.

    I've had hens on and off from my mixed breed closed flock lay large eggs, when none of the parent hens gave especially large eggs. Where did they come from? Genetic soup, I think.

    If you want to hatch better stock, try ordering hatching eggs from one of the heritage breeders. We've got some folks breeding beautiful heritage Rhode Island Reds.
  8. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler!

    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop
    Did the 3 yr oLd RIR hen that lays egg anywhere from 75g to almost 90g eggs lay eggs that big her first year laying?
    Might have to wait until after her first adult molt to see the true potential in egg size?
  9. ChickenLegs13

    ChickenLegs13 Songster

    Sep 4, 2013
    Lower Alabama
    I'm not a chicken gene expert so I can't answer your question per se but to get the hens that lay the biggest eggs I hatch the biggest eggs. It takes many chickens & generations and much culling to acomplish this. With only a few random hens and 2 generations there's no telling what you're going to get.
  10. lazy gardener

    lazy gardener Crossing the Road

    Nov 7, 2012
    I think it's a combination of genetics and environment. If a chick starts out with optimal nutrition, she'll develop the reproductive system that will support production of a larger egg. (I've noticed that my hens eggs are larger after they've had a good protein feast.) Also, when she is laying, if she has excellent nutrition, her egg will be larger, and produce a more robust chick. Continue this cycle for multiple generations, always choosing the best eggs from the hens who produce the biggest and most frequent eggs, and you'll end up with a superior flock. Choose your roosters from eggs hatched from superior hens. But, I'm not sure I'd want to push my flock in the direction of producing mega eggs which have resulted in egg binding issues. To OP: Why did you say you did not want to deal with Ideal? Is that where your original girls came from?

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