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Ok to hatch eggs fertilized by sibling rooster?

Discussion in 'Incubating & Hatching Eggs' started by CraftyChicky, Feb 3, 2016.

  1. CraftyChicky

    CraftyChicky Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Wondering about interbreeding. I am ready to start my spring hatch, but am having trouble finding Ameraucana fertile eggs in my area. I do have hens and a rooster that were from the same hatch, and either full siblings or half siblings. Can I hatch these?
     
  2. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

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    Yes you can. Every chicken breed was developed by inbreeding. Any prize winning show chicken line is developed by inbreeding. A lot of times that’s line breeding (parent to offspring), sometimes it’s cousin to cousin (spiral breeding), but sibling breeding is also used.

    Any time you inbreed you enhance certain traits. These may be good traits, it may be bad traits. So try to not breed chickens with bad traits, whether inbreeding or otherwise. When you inbreed recessive traits show up. These can be good or bad, often neutral. You can learn a lot about the genetics of your flock by inbreeding. If you start coming up with deformed chickens in the second or third generation you might want to look at getting some new stock.

    One potential problem with inbreeding is that you can and will limit genetic diversity. Over time this can cause some problems with your flock. If they inbreed too much fertility, productivity, and the immune system can suffer, for example. A standard model on small farms around the world for thousands of years is to bring in a new rooster every four to five generations to reintroduce genetic diversity.
     
  3. CraftyChicky

    CraftyChicky Chillin' With My Peeps

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    That is what I was hoping to hear. Thank you so much for your input.
     
  4. HSMomma3

    HSMomma3 Out Of The Brooder

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    Can I tag along to your conversation with a related question? I'm wondering about how it works with breeding my own chickens, if I have a rooster that is a different breed than the hen... We will have 6 hens and 1 rooster each, of two different breeds (Buff Orp, and SLW). We would like to be able to hatch our own eggs next year. So do I need to keep the flock completely separate by breed? If the BO rooster mates with the SLW hen (or vice versa), is it ok to hatch these eggs? Will the chicks be healthy? Will they be able to hatch healthy eggs for the next generation? This is all new to me and I'm trying to learn how it works. Thanks for any words of wisdom!
     
  5. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

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    Good questions. And don’t feel bad about asking. We all start somewhere. Never be afraid to ask any question on here.

    Chicken breeds are not natural. They are totally manmade. Roosters and hens do not recognize breeds, they just recognize “Me Tarzan, you Jane”. Any breed of rooster will mate any breed of hen. Any breed of hen will accept any breed of rooster just as readily as she will a rooster of her own breed.

    The eggs will hatch. When they do you will have chickens. They will inherit traits from both parents. When you mate chickens that are not closely related genetically (separate breeds quality) you often get a boost from something called “Hybrid vigor”. What that amounts to is that you get an increase in genetic diversity. You can get the same boost by mating chickens of the same breed if they have been isolated from each other genetically for several generations.

    Their offspring will be able to hatch chicks. After several generations you lose genetic diversity which can lead to problems with too much inbreeding. The way that has been handled on farms worldwide for thousands of years is that every four or five generations they bring in a new rooster to restore genetic diversity.

    I’m not sure what color/pattern of chickens a Silver Laced rooster will give over a Buff hen. They should be mostly white but you might get some interesting patterns. A Buff rooster over a Silver Laced hen will give you what we call red sex links. The male chicks will hatch with yellow down and the females will hatch with reddish down. If they are side by side you should easily be able to tell them apart. If you hatch eggs from the other cross you won’t know which yellow chicks are male or female.
     
  6. HSMomma3

    HSMomma3 Out Of The Brooder

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    Thanks for all this helpful information! This will be our second flock, so I have had a little experience but not with hatching my own... I knew that they would definitely mate, just didn't know if the chicks would be healthy in the long run. This is great news for us, no separate coops or runs! And I personally think the potential for new and unique patterns sounds really exciting! Thanks for sharing your knowledge with this beginner. :) Much appreciated!
     

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