Marans egg color question

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by CorgiHouse, Dec 7, 2010.

  1. CorgiHouse

    CorgiHouse Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have a Cuckoo Marans pullet that I got from a backyard breeder who has lots of chickens and several different breeds, so I really don't have any idea of quality of her birds. I just have a backyard flock as well, so don't really care, but did want to have a hen that gives me terra cotta colored eggs. Well, this pullet apparently gave me her first egg yesterday - my husband says he saw her in the nest box and then found the egg there. But the egg is not dark at all!! It is a slightly different shade, and slightly darker brown/tan than my Java, Wyandotte & Black Star eggs, but definitely wouldn't call it dark by any means! So my question is this: Do Marans start out with a lighter egg when they first start laying? I always thought the color stays basically the same from first egg to last.........
     
  2. Illia

    Illia Crazy for Colors

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    Naturally, most Cuckoo Marans are hatchery based, and even ones that are from good breeders, still, tend to have VERY pale eggs. So, what you looking at is what you get. Yes, it may get a little darker, but otherwise. . . Sorry, but that's about it. The Cuckoo color of Marans usually has the worst reputation for egg color, and especially for the fact that most are from hatcheries, it is because they've been bred to be production layers, not dark layers. This practice actually originated in Europe, then came here.

    A good dark egg would be from a well bred Cuckoo or another color, such as Wheaten, Blue Wheaten, Black Copper, Blue Copper, Golden Salmon, and Black Tailed Buff.

    Blues and Splashes also suffer poor egg color, and also are beginning to be a popular hatchery-based color variety.
     
  3. CorgiHouse

    CorgiHouse Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:Thanks! That's pretty much what I figured!! I was a little surprised though, as I previously had a Cuckoo chick from a feedstore, so I assume fom a hatchery, that ended up laying pretty nice terra cotta colored eggs. Not dark chocolate like REALLY good Marans eggs, but I thought pretty nice color and much darker than other brown eggs. So I guess I expected close to the same from this pullet. Oh well, I really like her personality, and think she's pretty, so I won't hold her egg color against her. [​IMG]
     
  4. Illia

    Illia Crazy for Colors

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    I think a few hatcheries are better than others. . I've seen some Cuckoo eggs from I think Ideal hatchery that were a terra cotta, sort of a Sweet Potato, type color.

    Also, forgot to mention, Marans eggs don't stay the same through their life. As a hen first begins, her eggs will darken, then be at their darkest, then lighten up as time goes on. When she stops, then lays again, they'll darken again, then lighten again. It's a nice little cycle.

    Often people breed them to have that dark point in the cycle last longer.
     

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