Selecting Breeds for a Rainbow Egg Basket

Discussion in 'Sponsored Content, Contests, and Giveaways' started by JenniO11, Mar 5, 2013.

  1. JenniO11

    JenniO11 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    There are a lot of things to consider when choosing breeds for your flock, but most prospective and current chicken owners have one thing on the brain… EGGS. Sure, egg production is a major factor, but it’s no surprise that egg color has eclipsed many other considerations as people choose their breeds. Similar to how a coach chooses a lineup, backyard chicken enthusiasts are now strategically outlining their flock to ensure a diverse egg basket filled with as many colors from the eggshell rainbow as possible.

    To make your job a little easier, we have outlined the key color categories and a few of the most popular breeds that deliver them!

    WHITE: Some people might shy away from white egg layers, having been exposed to white eggs their entire lives and seeking something more “exciting.” However, don’t let this happen to you! Sure, a dozen white eggs might be boring. When you have a dozen different colored eggs, though? That white egg will pop and add an important element to your egg basket.
    • Leghorns – Widely used in production operations, it’s time to give Leghorns some love. They are great producers of large white eggs, come in a few different color variations, and deserve the same spoiled lifestyle as more common backyard breeds. They don’t tolerate the cold very well, though, so take that into consideration.
    • Lakenvelder – They’re smaller, true, which means their eggs aren’t as large as a Leghorn’s, but many find their 3-4 lb. size charming! Available as Golden Lakenvelders or Silver Lakenvelders, their color pattern is exciting and they usually lay white eggs varying to tinted.
    • Polish – Everyone knows about the Polish chickens. They’re the ones with the fashion-forward headdress. Available in a wide assortment of colors and patterns, the Polish are unique-looking birds who lay small white eggs. Not what we would call “super star producers” but they are a fun addition to any flock.

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    CREAM: Somewhere between the common white and the increasingly common brown, lies cream colored eggs. If you are looking to have a rainbow egg basket, you won’t want to forget this category!
    • Wyandottes – While some Wyandottes will lay eggs a little slanted to the “brown” side, most lay a delightful cream colored eggs. Moreover, they are fantastic producers and come in some very exciting color patterns such as Silver Laced, Golden Laced, or Blue Laced Red.
    • Silkies – Do we even need to describe these beauties? They’re sweet, soft, adorable and great mothers. Sure, they’re bantams and therefore lay small eggs, but they lay often!

    BROWN: Classic. Most backyard flock owners have at least one hen that lays brown eggs. Not only are they a keystone in your rainbow egg basket, but there are bunches of fantastic breeds that produce high numbers of large eggs.
    • Rhode Island Red – One of the best egg producers with beautiful plumage.
    • Plymouth Rock – Great producers that come in a wide array of colors or patterns.
    • Australorp – Large, friendly hens that lay light brown eggs. They are all black, but their feathers have a lovely green
    shimmer.

    • Orpingtons – Related to the Australorps, they have many of the same desireable characteristics, but are available in numerous color options with the most popular being “buff.”

    CHOCOLATE: This is one of the egg colors that gets people extra excited. Few things “pop” in a dozen eggs
    like a deep, dark, mahogany colored beauty. We especially like to set these next to a cream or white egg for extra contrast!

    • Black Copper Marans – Any variety of Marans will lay a dark brown egg, but you have to give special props to the Black Coppers as they always manage to have the deepest and darkest of the bunch.
    • Welsummer – While their egg might not be quite as dark as the Black Copper Marans, Welsummers are known to commonly lay dark speckled eggs. Don’t forget that part of the appeal of a diverse egg basket will be fun touches like eggs with speckles!
    • Penedesenca – These aren’t ideal if you live somewhere cold, as they are a Mediterranean breed. If you have the climate for them, they are beautiful birds that lay a dark brown egg.
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    BLUE: In recent years, chocolate colored and blue colored eggs have become the talk of the town. Not to mention how fun it is to show your neighbors blue chicken eggs for the first time. This is a must-have color in your egg basket!
    • “Easter Eggers” – A mixed breed chicken that comes in an endless variety of colors and patterns. Friendly, assertive, and comical these are a backyard flock favorite. Beware, though, not every Easter Egger will lay blue eggs. Some will lay green or light brown.
    • Ameraucana – Ameraucanas share the personality characteristics of Easter Eggers, but come in fewer, more strict color varieties and are guaranteed to lay blue eggs. Our warning here is that many hatcheries, online shops, or feed stores often mislabel Easter Eggers as Ameraucanas, so be confident in your source to be sure.
    • Araucana – Another guaranteed blue egg layer. These birds are rumpless (they don’t have tails) and they have delightful muffs on the sides of their faces.

    GREEN: The last, but not the least important! Green is just as fun and essential nowadays as blue eggs!
    • “Easter Eggers” – While most Easter Eggers used to lay blue eggs, more and more are laying green ones these days.
    • “Olive Eggers” – A new twist on Easter Eggers, Olive Eggers are blue-egg laying chickens crossed with a dark brown egg laying breed. The result is a hen that lays a gorgeous olive green egg!

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    So now you have a plan for beautifully colored egg shells, but what about the yolks? Click here to enter our drawing for a case of 6 bags of Manna Pro[​IMG] Omega Egg Maker[​IMG] Supplement! Perfect for healthy hens and rich colored yolks!
     
    Last edited: Mar 6, 2013
    10 people like this.
  2. CHICKEN CRAZY1

    CHICKEN CRAZY1 Chillin' With My Peeps

    This is a very usful page! Thank you for posting it!
     
  3. bruceha2000

    bruceha2000 Overrun With Chickens

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    These are really cool looking but I think the Cubalaya Peewee eggs would fall through. That and the cats would have too much fun knocking the eggs out. [​IMG]




    Nice job on the difference between hatchery "Ameraucana" and REAL "Ameraucana" Jenni. Ideal told me that their "Ameraucana" are not Easter Eggers because there is no such breed. While they are right on the last part, the APA doesn't recognize what we all call Easter Eggers as a breed, my girls don't meet Ameraucana color patterns and one of them lays a green egg. Thus, they are NOT Ameraucana.

    But they are GREAT chickens [​IMG]
    I got them as 2 day old chicks mid June. THEY are pretty, their EGGS are pretty and they have BOTH been laying about 5 eggs a week for the last 3 months.

    Bruce
     
    Last edited: Mar 6, 2013
  4. salt and pepper

    salt and pepper Chillin' With My Peeps

    I was hoping to have a colorful egg basket, but my ameraucana is laying BROWN eggs!
     
  5. Gargoyle

    Gargoyle Overrun With Chickens

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    My Coop
    Typo on your contest page. It says:
    "Winner will be chose on March 12th, 2013 and contacted by email."
     
  6. redneck farmer

    redneck farmer Chillin' With My Peeps

    I have a Amerucana Xrode island red will I have brown eggs with blue spots or blue eggs with brown spots!!!???
     
  7. Mommy 2 Wee Ones

    Mommy 2 Wee Ones Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have all the colors, but the Olive. Had two chicks that hatched out last spring, who's Mom was an EE & Dad was a GLW. Just before they turned 5 months old, they both passed. Am hoping that this spring, a few of my BO's go broody. I have a EE who lays a Blue, and my other EE lays a Green, and my Roo is a Slikie. And I know he is doing his job, am finding fertile eggs when I am fixing breakfast. ;)
     
  8. lemmerich

    lemmerich Out Of The Brooder

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    Humboldt sask Canada
    I have brown blue white and cream but need more hens and some chocolate. My kids just love it
     
  9. AngieO

    AngieO Chillin' With My Peeps

    so far I have a hen that lays a pink XL egg, one that lays a white bantam egg, and two that lay cream colored bantam size eggs :) Have chicks that should lay the rest of the rainbow of colors when they reach egg laying age. I have two RIR hens and three Buff Orpington hens that are on the brink of the age to start laying.
     
  10. critterwhisper

    critterwhisper Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jan 14, 2013
    Very good article! I have a "americana"or EE least thats what the sign said at the feedstore,they have blue/black legs.They are only 3 weeks old so when they mature i will have to post pics so somebody can tell me lol reguardless i love them anyways.i also have RIR's,buff orps,light brahmas,red sexlinks,and black sex links. Cant wait to get eggs from my girls this summer :)
     

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