I posted previously about the roosters, but now have photos of all 8 of my Marans. They all started out gray/yellow as chicks and were to have come from blue/cuckoo lines. Previously I was told that the roosters show gold leakage, so read up some on Silver/Gold. I'm assuming (I know, not always wise) that the same thing that's making rooster H light is the thing making hens E and F light. What do you think these guys are specifically? The A through D are the darker of the blue hens, but even they look pretty different from each other. E and F are my gray ladies, what is making the white heads on them? Silver? Birchen? (How do you know the difference in those anyway when it's overlying blue?) Just for those answering to know my genetic understanding: I understand sex linkage and that males are ZZ/females ZW. I understand blue genetics with blue being heterozygous, splash homozygous. I understand that Birchen is at the E locus, and I understand that Silver and Gold are sex-linked, and that Silver turns the yellow/red base color to white. I get the impression that silver is incompletely dominant in that you can see gold leakage with one silver gene and one gold gene in the males, is that true? Also, there is no other gene at the silver locus, right (other than dominant white)? It's either Silver, Gold, or Dominant White? Gold is the wild type? Just can't live with myself until I nail down what my birds are, it's a compulsion. So my guesses for these guys, feel free to slaughter me for these guesses: A Hen - Blue - is there birchen or something underlying giving the whitish fringe in the neck/lack of black lacing on the feathers? B Hen - Blue - same as hen A ---^ C Hen - Blue - actually looks true blue to me without something else affecting her neck feathers D Hen - Blue - what's up with her neck and the sort of barred feathers there? E Hen - Blue + Silver F Hen - Blue + Silver G Rooster - Blue Cuckoo Silver/Gold H Rooster - Silver/Gold Blue Cuckoo...maybe homozygous cuckoo making him lighter as well? Or is he a Silver Birchen or something? That last rooster is significantly lighter than the rest of the birds, though that photo is dark. I left it that way because it showed the gold hue on his back the best. Also attached is a photo of the boys facing off in better lighting. I've hatched a handful of chicks from this pen, so far a splash cuckoo, a blue cuckoo, and 3 other cuckoos that are not blue. So far I have not seen any non-cuckoos. Side-questions, why do my boys' barring look so much more contrasty than photos of cuckoo Marans I've seen? Is that what the homozygous cuckoo individuals look like? Just trying to figure out how many genes I've got here to make decisions on what to breed towards. Thanks for any and all opinions, I greatly appreciate it.