rare breed breeding question

Discussion in 'General breed discussions & FAQ' started by seminolewind, Jun 26, 2011.

  1. seminolewind

    seminolewind Flock Mistress Premium Member

    Sep 6, 2007
    spring hill, florida
    If you have a pair of rare breed chickens , how do they become a flock? Do they all inbreed? Or do people need fresh blood to continue breeding? Can you introduce new blood by breeding with a similar chicken, then breeding the characteristics out?

    I just wonder how it's done when someone has a rare breed, and same breed unrelated chickens are not that available.
  2. madamwlf

    madamwlf Nevermore Acres

    Aug 22, 2010
    Mount Airy, MD
    I'm no expert but I think you can take the daughters and breed them back to their father. This shouldn't do anything major to the genetic makeup of the off spring. I'll be in this situation in a few months and will keep an eye on this thread.
  3. phasianidae

    phasianidae Chillin' With My Peeps

    Nov 9, 2010
    If the entire population of the breed only consisted of one pair then the best you could do is to breed the cockerels back to the hen and the pullets back to the rooster. You could continue this for many generations. Back in the days of cockfighting, this was commonly practiced to obtain offspring very similar to an ideal specimen. Eventually, you could then separate them into several breeding groups and rotate the roosters from group to group every year. The most important trait to cull for would be as always-vigor. If you do not cull heavily for vigor in an inbred population, the results will no doubt be poor fertility, egg laying, and weak conformation.

    If there is a similar breed you could breed them to and then make subsequent matings back to the original birds, this would introduce some much needed genetic diversity. However, with some breeds the goal is to keep them as pure as possible (Javas for example), and breeders would not want to out cross.
  4. punky rooster

    punky rooster Awesome

    Jul 21, 2010
    Quote:I agree. Crossing a distantly related/unrelated line is a much better option than an out-cross.
    Last edited: Jun 26, 2011
  5. RareBreedFancier

    RareBreedFancier Surrounded by Broodies

    Nov 5, 2010
    Australia :)
    I've been looking into the same thing. Very luckily I picked up an unrelated cockerel to go with my original roo and 3 hens.

    I have some links to breeding plans somewhere but I'm having a little trouble finding them. I'll update if I find the others but try this one: Starting Your Own Heritage Flock Step #5 in particular. It's by YellowHouseFarm who is a forum member here. [​IMG]

    I'm planing to run 4 breeding pens, I have a link describing spiral breeding too but I obviously need to tidy up my bookmarks as I can't find those either. The heritage breeds thread on here has lots of good info and can help you with breeding plans.
  6. seminolewind

    seminolewind Flock Mistress Premium Member

    Sep 6, 2007
    spring hill, florida
    Thanks, I'll read the link.
  7. chickendales

    chickendales Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 24, 2011
    Quote:i would breed to similar bird and breed out the characteristics u dont what it well make the the bird stronger then if u inbreed then
  8. Sportsterjeep

    Sportsterjeep Creekside Acres Farm

    Jun 1, 2010
    Mill Hall PA
    Spiral breeding is simple to describe. Start with at least 3 pens.
    1. Breed your first year. The best pullets will always go back to the pens where their eggs came from. Take the best F1 cockeral from each pen and put back into the pen his egg came from.

    2. Breed year two. Put the best F2 pullets back into their originating pens. Then take the F1 cockerals and rotate them. Pen 1 goes to 2, 2 to 3, and 3 to 1. This is done for however many pens you have.

    3. Breed year 3 and then go back to step 1. The F3 cockeral will go back to the pen that his egg came from, etc, etc.

    This system was used in a closed flock of RIR for over 90 years and worked very well for them. Use at least three pens, more will reduce the inbreeding coefficient even more.
  9. farmdude

    farmdude Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 20, 2009
    NE Wisconsin
    Quote:May I ask what breed of chicken? Everyone here gave you very good advice.
  10. seminolewind

    seminolewind Flock Mistress Premium Member

    Sep 6, 2007
    spring hill, florida
    I was just wondering how it would work if i decided to go with heritage or a rare breed. Yes i got good information, thankyou!!!

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by