leghorn///ee for larger eggs

Discussion in 'General breed discussions & FAQ' started by chickenbuddy0, Nov 22, 2008.

  1. chickenbuddy0

    chickenbuddy0 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Years ago I knew an old farmer who had a project mixing leghorn and EE. He had a couple of generations of these and they were all white and layed a blue or green LARGE egg. I bought an old hen from him and she was an excellent laying machine!!! He died about 15 years ago and I was thinking of starting the project up in his memory this spring. Anyone done this ?
     
  2. Kev

    Kev Overrun With Chickens

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    Sun City, California
    Wow.. should have kept that line going. What type combs did they have?

    That cross/goal has been attempted several times. Bart Harrell in one of those Dakotas has(had? He has gone completely silent on forums for years and his genetics website recently disappeared) was working on a line.

    It is not that easy as leghorns have a gene that actively represses pigmenation on the eggshells. So a common result are either white or very pale blue tinted white eggs or eggs with some color but is obscured by a chalky layer over top of the eggs.

    Also depends on the goal- if one wants birds that look exactly like Leghorns, the linkage between pea and the O gene responsible for the blue or green eggs is very difficult to break. In reverse, it makes selecting the birds much easier if the pea comb is the desired comb.. just pick out and keep the pea combed chicks from later generations and over 90% of those will be blue/green egg carriers.

    And lastly, this is the sort of idea done with Legbars in Europe/England. They lucked out on a single combed blue/green egg layer and crossed it with Leghorns to create Legbars.
     
  3. paduanchook

    paduanchook Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jan 17, 2008
    McDavid Florida
    im currently experimenting w/a cali white x ee. So far the babies keep coming out looking just like a cali white. wonder what the eggs will be like?
     
  4. Kev

    Kev Overrun With Chickens

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    Let us know. [​IMG]

    Calif whites are cross using white leghorns over.. California Grays, if I remember right?

    White leghorns have dominant white, so that is why most are turning out white. (should have had a few not-whites though but then don't know what color the ee is).

    If the ee is gold based(brown body) some of the birds will start to show some brown/red on their bodies later. Especially the roosters.

    BTW I admit to being occasionally tempted to create a line of blue/green egger leghorns. Especially as some of my naked necks lay blue/green eggs plus have single combs- this combination is very rare in USA (single comb and blue/green eggs that is). I could very well create birds identical to pure leghorns or even similar to Legbars if I wanted or had the room..
     
  5. Birch Run Farm

    Birch Run Farm Biddy up!

    Sep 5, 2008
    VERMONT
    So if the white shell color is dominant tell me about Red Stars? They lay a brown egg and sometimes it is pretty dark brown. McMurray Red Stars are RIR X White Leghorn.

    Also, I have always heard (which doesn't mean it is necessarily true) that the blue gene/pea comb was stronger.

    Input?
     
  6. chicken stalker

    chicken stalker TOS Rocks!

    Aug 31, 2008
    Binghamton, NY
    I was also considering crossing my leghorn with my ee roo. She lays HUGE eggs, they don't even fit in the carton. My roo I think hatched out of a very blue egg so it would be a good way to determine if carries the blue gene or the blue over brown( aka green) gene. Am I right in my logic? He is black with gold neck fethers and bearded, she is pure white...should be interesting. [​IMG]
     
  7. Guitartists

    Guitartists Resistance is futile

    Mar 21, 2008
    Michigan
    From what I read on a genetics site,
    “single comb is recessive to all other comb types except....Breda.“

    That being said, it would explain a lot. Now as to that blue egg/ pea comb connection... I hope to get to the bottom of that myself as I have goals to breed a V-combed EE [​IMG]
     
  8. chickenbuddy0

    chickenbuddy0 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    wow! a 'V' combed EE sounds cool!! keep us informed as to the progress!
     
  9. pips&peeps

    pips&peeps There is no "I" in Ameraucana

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    The pea comb gene and blue egg gene are very close together on the chromosome. Therefore it is rare to get one without the other.
     
  10. Kev

    Kev Overrun With Chickens

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    Quote:Yeah, good question. The standard answer is leghorns can and usually have the pigment repressor. Either it could be recessive or the leghorn lines bred for sex link crosses don't have it with the express purpose for brown/tan eggers in the crosses. If it's recessive then the crosses will produce the tan and brown eggs, however the crosses and mixes bred together will produce the 'pale eggs'.

    As for the blue gene & pea comb, you probably meant the fact these genes are located very close to each other on the same chromosome.

    When the chromosomes split up during cell division, the chromosome splits up in sections, so if two genes are located close to each other they are very likely to be on the same section most of the time. It's for this reason the majority of blue/green eggers also have pea combs.. and why single combed blue/green eggers are rare(they exist, just uncommon- like some of my own birds).

    What this also means, if one outcrosses the typical blue/green egger with a pea comb to anything single combed.. over 90% of the time, it will be the pea combed ones that lay blue/green eggs.
     
    Last edited: Nov 23, 2008

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