What useful crosses can I make?

Discussion in 'General breed discussions & FAQ' started by shsesc, Oct 31, 2017.

  1. Indyshent

    Indyshent Crowing

    Aug 28, 2014
    I don't think they're pink. If you look at the full size picture, he has dark legs and light feathering. What's really dining is his super obvious red leg streaks (perfectly normal for a mature, sexual active dude). Nice shape and a pretty chivalrous dude from the sounds of it, so I'd say breed the stuffing out of him--especially if you're just going for nifty mutts.
    Fanci Feathers Marans likes this.
  2. Indyshent

    Indyshent Crowing

    Aug 28, 2014
    Your girls are actually just as important as your guys here.

    If the blue one toward the middle is your EE (gray isn't gray, and blue isn't blue when it comes to chickens) roo, you can use him to make sex links with your Dominiques. Pullets will be solid blue or black, and boys will be barred blue or black (will have an obvious white head spot as hatchlings).

    Most of the "red hens" I'm seeing in your pictures are Production Reds. Thought I might have seen a partridge girl in one too.
    Fanci Feathers Marans likes this.
  3. The Moonshiner

    The Moonshiner Professional Chicken Tender

    Nov 17, 2016
    There are two kinds of white.
    Dominate white which seems to be what you're talking about. Dominate white does not cover gold/red. It only covers black and black dilutes like blue and chocolate.
    Another thing is when you say a white bird is white not silver. It could be white and silver.
    There's also recessive white. Unlike dominate white which covers with one copy of it. (One copy will have leakage or specks of color here and there.)
    Recessive white is recessive so one copy goes sight unseen but two copies covers everything. Black, gold/red etc.
    A lot of white birds are recessive white because it does cover everything.
    Dominate white birds won't cover gold/red so a completely white dominate white bird is also silver a lot of times because the silver takes away what the dominate white can't.
    Other dominate whites are on black, barred etc. birds. Anything without the reds/golds.
    You really need to know the genes you're dealing with to figure out what its going to get you.
    I have a pen of blue and black sillies and I hatch about 25% white silkies because some are carrying one copy sight unseen.
    If you have a white bird that is recessive white you can breed them to barred for sex links because the offspring will only get one copy of the white so it won't show on the offspring. They would just be black, black barred or whatever is under their white.
    Unless of course they also carry barred which would make all chicks barred.
    Mixed and unknown birds are so hard to predict since there are so many unknowns.
    Lady of McCamley likes this.
  4. Indyshent

    Indyshent Crowing

    Aug 28, 2014
    Yup, was trying to keep my post briefer than that (information overload, typing everything out on mobile). Because the OP can't know the exact type if white he's dealing with, he shouldn't bother making white sex links with white Rocks because they quite probably carry other genes that will screw the project up. Other than a lot of messy test crossing, there's no good way to figure out what those white birds are really wearing under their lab coats. Plus, those genes are likely to come back and haunt him later (like with most sex links but with even more likely variation).

    For instance, they could also carry barring. One of my white Leghorn crosses has barring in sporadic feathers. Despite having quite a bit of gold in the non-Leghorn parental populace, there's very little gold cropping up in the kids, even though Leghorns definitely have dominant white (plus change). Only one of the Leghorn crosses has any gold on him yet and it took months to show up (it's coming in really pretty--the red shoulder is getting a bit darker, and his hackles and saddles are getting a super pastel orange-ish color. Too dilute still to be a Pyle , so there must be other dilution factors present in Leghorns that weren't in the production Red hen that must've laid his egg).

    From what I understand, white Silkies are pretty much always recessive white (nifty to know that the birds in your pen are all split for the trait though, since you're getting the predicted Mendelian ratio), but my experience with Leghorns is that they've got a scad of weird, utterly unpredictable stuff under those white lab coats. If they were strictly recessive white, I shouldn't have had so many white chicks hatch, but I'm guessing the color started on a dominant white slate, then gradually other diluting alleles were added (probably recessive white eventually since I've yet to see a white Leghorn which has any color leaking through). White Rocks are probably a similar story (tons of wonky alleles being added to reduce leak), even if I'd hope otherwise for said sex linked project.
    Lady of McCamley likes this.
  5. Lady of McCamley

    Lady of McCamley Crowing

    Mar 19, 2011
    NW Oregon
    Yes....White Rocks are another breed with a lot under that "white hood." Often, being so closely related to their more popular Barred cousins, barring is hidden.

    Starting with mix breeds produces either a lot of test breeding and headaches, or you simply have to roll with a lot of weird stuff and be happy about it.

    Serious breeders choose to use pure breeds for a much quicker accomplishment of their goals.

    However, backyard breeding is fun, as long as you know the hurdles that will inevitably be in your way, and most importantly, do not sell birds that are labeled anything other than utility crosses.

    Indyshent likes this.
  6. shsesc

    shsesc In the Brooder

    Jun 6, 2017
    East Haddam, CT, USA
    Sorry for the delay,I was working a lot outside because the rain let up and storms had knocked down lots of green leaves and branches.
    Thanks for all the very useful info you've all added. I'm going to have to read through it again to absorb it all, but I really appreciate it.
    The dark gray is my male EE.

    The two females I may not have mentioned are an ISA brown and a speckled Sussex.

    Here are more images. 1102170908.jpg 1102170907g.jpg
  7. Joyofchickens1

    Joyofchickens1 In the Brooder

    Jun 2, 2019
    My BCM is the exact same way!
    Fanci Feathers Marans likes this.

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