Golden layer and white layer genes?

nao57

Songster
Mar 28, 2020
1,294
1,281
160
I wanted to ask if golden layer and white layer genes are stable?

For example,

If you order golden layer or white layer eggs or ducklings, and then raise them, and then have them hatch eggs, will those descendants have the same laying power as their parents, and will it be as stable as other duck breeds?
 

TomCahalan

Chirping
Feb 13, 2020
275
283
90
Ohio
Well, here are my thoughts:

A hybrid between two completely different breeds will lay like an average of its parents, plus a bonus for hybrid vigor. This bonus can be big or small. If the Golden 300 is such a cross (with a khaki campbell as its father and some other breed, such as black swedish, as its mother) then we would expect reduced laying capability in the next generation. The laying ability won't continue to decline generation after generation, you lose that hybrid vigor bonus only once.

However, there are some things on Metzer's site that make me think that these breeds aren't crosses between different breeds. First of all, the white layer really can't be. Which two white breeds are being crossed to make the white layer? Metzer maintains several white breeds, but a pekin x duclair is going to be a meat duck, rather than a small layer. Metzer also don't refer to the white layer as a hybrid. This makes me think that Metzer just keeps the white layer as a regular breed.

Ok so the white layer is just a regular breed, meaning that you won't lose productivity after the first generation. What about the golden layer? Well... if you look at their comparison table (https://www.metzerfarms.com/DuckBreedComparisonNew.cfm?affiliate=undef) you will notice that all of the physical stats for the white and golden layers are exactly the same: 200-290 eggs/year, 75-90g/egg, etc... well to me that suggests that they are the same breed, but just different colors.

While the golden 300 must have started as a hybrid, I suspect that it no longer is one. I think that Metzer must maintain three populations of the same breed: white, khaki and/or chocolate, other. The khaki/chocolate population produces drakes which mate with ducks from the "other" population. These chicks are then sent to customers.

Another reason to think that these are breeds rather than F1 hybrids is that Metzer refers to them as having a better temperment than campbells. This suggests that they are selecting for this, meaning that they have established a new breed rather than just hybridizing their other breeds.

Given what I said above, it is still possible that these are hybrids. Metzer could make khaki campbells with another population to make the goldens, then he would also have to have bred white campbells to cross with a white version of the other population. If this is the case, then yes, you would lose the hybrid bonus after the first generation.

Either way, I think that you will still end up with high-producing ducks.
 

nao57

Songster
Mar 28, 2020
1,294
1,281
160
Very cool. Thanks!

Its so interesting to learn about this stuff.
 

Balog

Chirping
6 Years
Jul 30, 2014
4
2
62
Does anyone know how the Metzer golden/white layer compare to the Holderread golden cascade? I see a lot of places offering "golden/white layers" but I'm not sure if they're as good as the Metzer ones or not.

We're buying a house and hoping to rebuild our flock, and I want to get good stock vs my old approach of buying whatever was available locally.
 

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