Help Me Understand Marans

Discussion in 'General breed discussions & FAQ' started by KatGold, Jun 24, 2011.

  1. KatGold

    KatGold Chirping

    Mar 15, 2011
    Hey folks. First of all, if you have a good book recommendation regarding chicken genetics, let me know. I'd be interested in such a read.

    Now my quandary.

    On March 30th I was given four blue marans day olds (3 blue and 1 splash) by a man who raises marans in a po-dunk little town in South Texas. We were visiting him (long story) and he liked my daughters and gave them each four day old chicks.

    I knew scant about them but we've been raising them and they are lovely. It turns out, one is clearly a roo. It also appears to be a copper blue roo. It also seems to not crow at all. Being a city gal, I've been getting pretty excited about the possibility of raising my blue marans and maintaining a flock with the roo. My grand plan only works if the roo never figures out crowing. Once he crows, it's off to the soup pot.

    Even though I realize his crow will probably come, I cannot help but wonder if I could actually pull this off. But, I know there's a lot of discussion about what is really a marans and what isn't.

    When I look at blue marans people sell, they know the owner of the bloodlines (I really don't). There is so much discussion about feathered flanks (I'm pretty sure mine are clean legged, but I've also read that's the UK standard, and too I've read that there is no such thing as a clean legged pure bread). I've read that "side sprigs" are undesirable, but what the heck is a sprig? I've read that white ear lobes are undesirable. I think my roo does have white, but I cannot verify now. I just read that and it's night.

    So, what gives? I'd love any light you'd like to shed on the subject.

    Thanks and good night!

  2. KatGold

    KatGold Chirping

    Mar 15, 2011
    Oh, I mean to mention that the gals have beautiful strong lacing.

    Also, what the heck does self-blue mean? I know what it looks like (I've run across it with Muscovys) but why is it called self blue rather than lavender? It doesn't pertain to my real question, but I've just been curious.
  3. kstaven

    kstaven Crowing Premium Member

    Jan 26, 2007
    BC, Washington Border
    Self-blue and Lavender are the same thing. Some call it "true breeding blue"
  4. edgarmongold

    edgarmongold Chirping

    Apr 16, 2011
    Quote:The APA has accepted the proposed standard of the MCCUSA for Marans for the breed and for Black Coppers.

    It does require feathered feet and shanks.

    It also requires red ear lobes.

    The male will eventually crow so you will be out of the breeding picture.

    Since you have Splash with your Blues they should be laced on each feather on your Blues.

    If you are not going to show ignore the above as it will not matter and enjoy your females.
  5. KatGold

    KatGold Chirping

    Mar 15, 2011
    "The APA has accepted the proposed standard of the MCCUSA for Marans for the breed and for Black Coppers."

    This seems odd. So there is a breed standard and a type standard (BCs), but only for one type?

    Yes, I guess I know in my heart of hearts that my rooster will eventually crow. But I keep hoping. Maybe, just maybe he'll only crow once a week or something crazy. Pipe dreams are sweet!

    Anyhow, I guess mine are not feathered. There are a few leg feathers, but they are not thick like I've seen with adult birds. At 13 or so weeks, I'm guessing the legs would be more feathered by now.

    I'll just enjoy him while he lasts. Here's a crazy idea, maybe I'll keep him until he starts to crow. At that time, I'll hatch some eggs and start all over again. Maybe I can always have a roo in the wings and work them young until they get noisy (mine discovered his inner Casanova before he found his voice. Maybe this is common?) and then send them off to freezer camp. At the least, I will be able to keep replacing my own chickens.

    Yes, the other blues have lacing. They are lovely. I didn't realize there was a connection between the spash and the lacing. How does that work?

  6. josh44

    josh44 Songster

    Jun 16, 2008
    San Antonio Texas
    Quote:where in TX is he located might know them & could possibly help you figure out their lineiage & other info.

    PM me their location & name, I use to raise Marans & know a good portion of TX marans breeders [​IMG]
  7. KatGold

    KatGold Chirping

    Mar 15, 2011
    OKay, I'll PM you in a moment.

    Last edited: Jul 5, 2011
  8. Debbi

    Debbi Crowing

    May 2, 2010
    Oh just you wait, he WILL be crowing! [​IMG] You're lucky he isn't already! Mine all seem to start right at 8 weeks. Doesn't bother me, and I have no close neighbors, so mine can crow their fool heads off! [​IMG]

    Here is the link to the Marans Chicken Club USA:
    the "approved standard", then click on the different variety standards. So far, only the Black Coppers have been approved by the APA. The Wheaten variety will be up for approval this fall.

    White ears lobes are a DQ, as are side sprigs on the comb, and black or pearl eyes. A side sprig is just that; a bump or point(s) coming off the side of the comb. Feathered SHANKS and the outer toes are now required.

    While you are on the MCCU site, check out the egg color chart. A "4" is the bare minimum color a Marans should lay, and the illusive "9" is what most people aim for. Most average a color of between 5-7. Good luck with your girls, and I hope your boy stays quiet at least till he is doing the deed! [​IMG] POL usually comes between 5-6 months, watch for the pullets combs to start getting red, then they will be close to laying and breeding.
  9. KatGold

    KatGold Chirping

    Mar 15, 2011
    Oh this is great, thanks!

    I need a bit of clarification though. What does "DQ" mean? Here in the south, it means it's time for a Dilly Bar, which sounds pretty good in this heat, but surely you mean something entirely different. Also, what is POL?


  10. ccshambhala

    ccshambhala Songster

    Sep 8, 2008
    dq= disqualify
    pol= point of lay
    (i am guessing)

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