Mixed Breeds - White Leghorn Roo - RIR, Production Red, Red Stars, Ameraucana hens

Discussion in 'What Breed Or Gender is This?' started by kelise24, Jan 12, 2014.

  1. kelise24

    kelise24 New Egg

    3
    0
    7
    Apr 22, 2013
    Hello. I have been trying to research this all weekend and haven't found much. I thought someone on here may be able to help me. My son has a flock - 2 White Leghorn roosters and a mix of Ameraucanas, Production Reds, Rhode Island Reds and Red Stars. We are trying to hatch some of the eggs, and I am trying to find out what to expect.

    I believe the White Leghorn x Ameraucanas will produce a chicken that lays blue or green eggs and lays more than a typical Ameraucana but less than a leghorn. Does this sound right? Any idea on how to sex?

    The White Leghorn x Production Reds or Rhode Island Reds - I haven't found anything except for the reverse of this situation. I found one study from 1930. Any idea what these will look like? How to sex? I think they will lay lighter brown eggs and be pretty good layers...

    The third scenario - we bought from a local farmer several of what he called red stars. These are smaller than our other birds but lay consistently. I also cannot find any information about the White leghorn x Red Star. Would this pretty much be the same as the RIR mix - probably laying lighter brown eggs and laying pretty well? Ideas on how to sex?

    Any information anyone could offer would be greatly appreciated. I have about a week until these hatch. My son wants to sell some, as he is running this like a little business. (He is 10, and he loves his chickens. He is the President of the 4H Vet Science Program. And, yes, I am proud. Ha. :) ) I want him to be able to talk to people about exactly what they are getting.

    Again any info would be greatly appreciated. Thank you!!
     
  2. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

    31,451
    3,565
    538
    Jun 18, 2010
    Southern Oregon
    [​IMG]

    From my reading on here, you'll get mostly white birds with those white Leghorn boys. Dominant white basically masks all other colors. They'll have spots of other colors or patches of color, but pretty much white.

    The white egg genes from the leghorns will basically slightly dilute the hen's base egg color. If your Ameraucana hens lay blue eggs, their female offspring will lay a slightly lighter blue. Your brown egg layers' female offspring will lay lighter brown. The leghorn blood will likely boost production in all the offspring--the reason hatcheries cross leghorn blood into a lot of their production birds.

    None of your chicks will be sex linked, so you'll have to wait until around 6ish weeks for gender. With the leghorn blood, you might have females getting larger combs earlier, but large and red is pretty much male.

    Hope your son has fun! We need younger chicken folks.
     
  3. kelise24

    kelise24 New Egg

    3
    0
    7
    Apr 22, 2013
    Thanks so much for the information! Does this mean there is no way at all to sex them before 6 weeks? Just curious. We ended up with the leghorn roosters after being told they were pullets when we purchased them at 2 weeks old. ;)

    He loves taking care of the chicks and is hoping to branch out into other animals at some point. Thanks again!
     
  4. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

    31,451
    3,565
    538
    Jun 18, 2010
    Southern Oregon
    You'll probably have a good idea as they grow, cockerels will get larger combs earlier, they'll also redden up faster while pullet's combs will stay more flesh colored or pale pink. Males also have thicker legs. If you have a basically white bird with reddish patches only on the wing area, that's male coloring.
     
  5. WalkingOnSunshine

    WalkingOnSunshine Overrun With Chickens

    4,210
    455
    328
    Apr 8, 2008
    Ohio
    We do a lot of white Leghorn crosses here, and donrae is correct that any cross to a white Leghorn will be a white bird with some color leakage here and there. A Leghorn/Red Star cross will be an excellent layer of paler brown eggs, and the Leghorn/EE cross could lay blue, green, or brown eggs depending on the genotype of the EE parent.

    Be VERY careful culling for sex early with these babies. Sometimes even very young Leghorn cross pullets get combs and wattles ridiculously early, and with any other breed you'd be sure that was a male. Not so with these crosses. I don't usually cull cockerels until 8-12 weeks, and sometimes later on those that I'm not sure about--often don't cull until I see sure signs of maleness, like saddle feathers coming in.

    I really like my Leghorn crosses. Their only downside is the monochromatic nature of the flock--and that white Leghorn/RIR crosses tend to have so much red leakage on the neck and breast that they look dirty all the time, unfortunately.
     
  6. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

    31,451
    3,565
    538
    Jun 18, 2010
    Southern Oregon
    I understand using leghorns to boost productivity in the laying flock, but if you don't like the white, why not use browns? Do they not have as good laying offspring in your experience? I used some brown leghorn roos several years ago cause I wanted better layers, but don't really like white chickens.
     
  7. WalkingOnSunshine

    WalkingOnSunshine Overrun With Chickens

    4,210
    455
    328
    Apr 8, 2008
    Ohio
    I had some brown pullets once. Gorgeous birds, perhaps the prettiest I've ever had. Didn't lay their first egg until *50* weeks, when all the other pullets in the same batch started on time. Then only ever laid medium eggs, and not very many of them. And I'm positive that they didn't start laying until then, since at the time they were the only white-egg laying chickens in the flock.

    They made me fussy, so I sold them. [​IMG]

    I'm not a huge fan of an all-white flock, but I like the look and body shape of white Leghorns. What I don't like is not being able to tell any of them apart! Luckily we only have about 1/4 of the flock as Leghorns and Leghorn crosses right now, so I don't have too many problems with monochromatic birds.
     
  8. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

    31,451
    3,565
    538
    Jun 18, 2010
    Southern Oregon
    I can see how that would put you off the browns!

    I only had two roos and I think 3 hens, a small sample.
     
  9. aliciaplus3

    aliciaplus3 Chillin' With My Peeps

    376
    574
    161
    Oct 24, 2016
    Colorado
    Thank you so much for this information! I have a White Leghorn Roo that I plan to breed this spring and I was wondering the outcome. I have a couple of white leghorns that I plan to put in with him as well as a speckled Sussex, a delaware and a couple of EEs.
     
  10. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

    31,451
    3,565
    538
    Jun 18, 2010
    Southern Oregon
    [​IMG]

    Well, you'll get a lot of white birds, and they'll lay like champs! The EE/Leghorn crosses can be very fun, lots of large pastel blue or green eggs. Plus, they tend to inherit the smaller size of the Leghorn, so they don't eat as much as say your Sussex girl.
     
    1 person likes this.

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by