What happens when you mix breeds?

Discussion in 'General breed discussions & FAQ' started by kyle7630, Jan 4, 2011.

  1. kyle7630

    kyle7630 Songster

    Aug 14, 2008
    Semora NC
    After talking to another forum member about getting a roo for my mixed flock, I started wondering what happens when you mix certian breeds of chicken. I have RIR's, BO's, and JG's. What would the offspring look like if I had a BR roo? Are chicken genetics similar to other animals where you get a mix of looks between the two parents, or would you get something completely different? Would the egg production of the offspring still be good?
  2. txcarl1258

    txcarl1258 Songster

    Sep 11, 2010
    All of the chicks would be barred and the roos would have some leakage from the RIR and BO. The egg production should still be good as they are all good egg laying breeds. Personally I would stay away from a barred roo as you would not get any variety in your chicks. What's the point of having mutts without variety! [​IMG]
  3. You'd end up with a bunch of mixed breed chickens. Ever been to the animal shelter and seen all the mixed breed dogs?
    Last edited: Jan 4, 2011
  4. exop

    exop Songster

    Jan 10, 2009
    NW Indiana
    Hi Kyle7630,

    Generally you get a mix of looks between the parents, but txcarl1258 is right, Barred Rocks have sex linked barring which is dominant. A BR rooster will have all barred children.

    I think you'd get the most variety with a Rhode Island Red rooster.
    - The RIR hens would breed true;
    - BO hens would yield buff or dark buff offspring;
    - black or white JG hens would yield black offspring;
    - if you had BR hens, they would yield barred cockerel chicks and black pullets so you could pick out the cockerels

    Poulets de Cajun has a point, but if you're just after egg layers for your own use, and don't expect to be showing / selling / trying to give away your birds, it can be fun to experiment with color.

    Best - exop
    Last edited: Jan 4, 2011
  5. Godiva

    Godiva Songster

    May 17, 2007
    I made the mistake of having a barred roo with my mixed flock, and he was an awesome roo but the chicks were all barred with the roos having a bit of gold etc leaking through. We thoroughly enjoy mixing breeds and seeing what kind of eye candy we get. A lot of them get eaten by us and if they lay well ( those breeds you have should work great for that) then they stay and become part of the flock. I love the purebred birds but I also love the thrill of not knowing what the chicks are going to look like until they feather in. Good luck making the big choice of which roo. THere are some wonderful boys out there - don't take just any bird - look around. So many people need homes for extra roos you can have your pick!
  6. kyle7630

    kyle7630 Songster

    Aug 14, 2008
    Semora NC
    Quote:Yeah, I show dogs so I understand the pure breed/mutt deal. But I am after eggs and a nice variety of chickens to look at. I would like to have a BO roo because that is what my family really seems to like, but the BR roo the forum member has is a handsome fella I like the barring on the BR, maybe I will get a couple BR hens to add to the flock.
  7. Willowsong69

    Willowsong69 Chirping

    Nov 8, 2010
    New Hampshire
    There is an old genetics book about chickens (I forget the author) the title is something like, "Start Where You Are, With What You Have". I have plenty of SQ purebreeds and some fantastic litte mutt chickens. Give it a go. Would you get barred BO's out of this? That would be pretty cool. My friend Muggsmagee (here on BYC) bred her Black JG over BO hens and has some gorgeous little offspring. What is the worst that will happen? You'll have some extra egg layers or food in the freezer.
  8. Quote:Chicken genetics are hard enough to understand when you are dealing with purebred birds, much less mixed breeds. If you are only keeping chickens for egg production, mix em up and see what you get!
  9. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Free Ranging

    Feb 2, 2009
    Southeast Louisiana
    The BR roo will produce black and white barred chicks in the first generation. There may be some leakage and some variation, but not much. If you breed purebred chickens you can pretty much telll what you will get color and pattern.

    But if you then breed the offspring to each other, you have no idea what you will get, either color or pattern, other than a barred hen will always give barred roosters. There are so many different genes involved and they interact in so many different ways that you really don't know what to expect. With those breeds and with a BR grandfather, you will get a lot of black chickens and a lot of barred chickens in the second generation (all the roos will be barred), but you will also get other colors in both pullets and roosters and about half of the pullets should not be barred.

    If you want to play with chicken genetics, this tool can be a lot of fun. It can be addicting.

    Cross Calculator
  10. Sonoran Silkies

    Sonoran Silkies Flock Mistress

    Jan 4, 2009
    Tempe, Arizona
    Assuming both parents have mostly homozygous genes (two copies of the same allele for each gene), the first generation offspring will display all the more dominant traits among the genes involved. However, if one parent had dominant alleles, and the other recessive ones, all the offspring would be split: having one copy of the dominant allele and the second copy of the recessive allele.

    In the 2nd generation the recessive alleles will come into play, and you will get a far wider set of phenotypes than in the first generation. The more genes that differ in each of the original pair, the more phenotypes that will result.

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