I have four hens that were sold to me as "Red Sex Links" Alongside these, I have about a dozen silkies of various colors. Out of curiosity, I incubated several eggs from the sex links, none hatched but I opened them up and found a nearly fully formed bird that seemed to be silkie dominant. Blue skin and the funky silkie feet seemed pretty clearly visible. Fast forward a month or so and the 20 or so eggs I have been incubating came due and only two were pipped. The first wave that were due on the 18th I opened up to find half of the eggs had nearly fully formed birds, and three had birds still alive in them. Two of these have since died and the other is on its way out now. One of the ones that was due today is out of the shell and slowly fluffing up, the other didn't make it out. It seems they all have the silkie feet, but strangely enough, this batch doesn't have blue skin. It's much more orange colored, almost like a carrot. And what about this surprisingly high attrition rate? Why so many birds forming and quitting at the last minute? This leads me to be very curious about genetics and what to expect from any future hybrids Is the silkie extra toe dominant? Is the blue skin or orange dominant? So far I've seen both. Is it reasonable to expect an orange skinned silkie? A large full sized silkie? A silkie with sex link egg laying? A silkie that is more easily sexed? A sex link with blue skin? A sex link with extra toes? A red silkie? On the genetic end, I have been trying to figure out what exactly "Red Sex Links" are...and it seems its more of a class than a breed... "Red sex-links are a cross between a Rhode Island Red or New Hampshire rooster and a White Rock (This variety pair is known as a Golden Comet), Silver Laced Wyandotte, Rhode Island White or Delaware hen." - Wikipedia The grammar here is throwing me. Does this mean they can be RIR x WR = CG NH x WR = CG RIR x SLW NH x SLW RIR x RIW NH x RIW RIR x D NH x D Am I interpreting this correctly? It seems next to impossible to nail down exactly what my birds are genetically. So am I just going to have to see what comes out? If theres some SLW in them can I expect to see some of those traits possibly make an appearance? Thanks everyone, sorry for the lengthy series of questions, any and all help appreciated on any of these points.