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egg color genetics

Discussion in 'General breed discussions & FAQ' started by pbjmaker, Jan 14, 2009.

  1. pbjmaker

    pbjmaker Overrun With Chickens

    May 9, 2008
    Central Iowa
    Wondering what happens to the egg color of an EE hen bred with a white egg based roo?

    Her eggs are avacado green and the "baby daddy" is a golden lakenvelder (white egg layers)

    So will the resulting chicks lay just green tinted eggs or white eggs?
     
  2. Sonoran Silkies

    Sonoran Silkies Flock Mistress

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    Jan 4, 2009
    Tempe, Arizona
    Since hte male would pass on white egg genes, you can pretty much discount his impacting the colour with the addition of coloured egg genes. At best his genes will dilute colour of the offsprings' eggs.

    So, it will depend on which egg genes she passes to each offspring. Let's assume she has only one blue egg gene--in that case only half her offspring would inherit it (as compared with all of them is she had 2). And for convenience, let's assume that there is only one brown egg gene instead of the many that there are. Once again, if she only has one copy, half her offspring will inherit vs all if she has two.

    Okay, to combine those two, half the offspring would inherit one blue egg gene, and of those hald would inherit the brown egg gene as well, while the other half would not. So, of the half that inherited the blue egg gene, half (or a quarter of all offspring) would lay green eggs and an equal number would lay blue eggs.

    Of the other half that did not inherit the blue egg gene, half will have inherited the brown egg gene, and thus lay brown eggs (a quarter of the total offspring) and half will not inherit that gene and will lay white eggs.

    Now let's complicte matters--about half the offspring are male, and while they have the genes for laying whichever colour of egg, if they do lay, you'll make your fortune, lol.

    Quick summary: 1/4 each of blue, green, brown & white if both egg colour genes are het. If you get significantly more blue or green eggs, then she was probably homozygous for the blue egg gene. Likewise if you get only brown & green eggs, she is homozygous for the brown egg gene.
     
  3. Kev

    Kev Overrun With Chickens

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    Jan 13, 2008
    Sun City, California
    Sonoran, brown and tan eggshells are polygenetic and I would not be surprised if there are other "weird" genetic stuff going on also. There are quite more than a few different genes for tan and brown eggshells, so normally these should be considered a polygenetic trait, not due to simple single gene autosomal traits. It's often said to be very hard to go back to clean white eggshells after a cross of white x brown egg layers with tan tint persisting on the eggs.

    As for the first post, the results would be either half tinted/brown and half green/olive eggs or all green/olive eggers, depending on if the EE hen has one or two copies of the blue egg gene. (blue egg combined with tinted/brown eggs gives green or olive coloring)
     
  4. Sonoran Silkies

    Sonoran Silkies Flock Mistress

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    Tempe, Arizona
    Yes, I did state that "And for convenience, let's assume that there is only one brown egg gene instead of the many that there are."

    I was trying to give a simple answer. How easy it is to clean up the eggshell colour will depend on which and how many brown egg shell genes are present. If we're talking marans brown, it will probably be pretty hard to clean them up; if we're talking lightly tinted, probably fairly easy.
     

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