what will happen if i cross red stars with light sussex?

lavender pekins

Chirping
7 Years
Jun 16, 2012
117
4
83
my red star hen went broody the other day so i put 5 eggs underneath her and she is now sitting on them i also have light sussex running with my red stars and the cockerel is light sussex so some eggs are pure light sussex and some are a cross between red star and light sussex what will they turn out like? i dont want deformed chicks so will they be pourly or will they be fine also any other info will be helpful e.g colour and that sort of thing thankyou!
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sorry just realised in the usa you call them (red stars) golden sex link!
 
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chooks4life

Crowing
6 Years
Apr 8, 2013
4,902
678
296
Australia
I haven't heard of any breeds which cause deformities from crossing. I don't think there would be any reason why they should turn out poorly, unless you're breeding from bad stock to begin with or both parents carry recessive genes that are negatively expressed....

I love crossing random chooks to see what you get. Always try it, I say. You'll get amazing results a lot of the time, and if not, then informative. Good to know what genes are lurking maliciously.

Since you're crossing what I assume are two purebreds of different breeds, what you should get would be bigger, healthier chicks, with hybrid vigour... They should in fact be better than either parent. But that's true for any truly good breeding.

They should be beautiful.
 

lavender pekins

Chirping
7 Years
Jun 16, 2012
117
4
83
thankyou thats a load of my mind the stock we have aren't inbred like our neighbours (he has one hen that has three eyes however only two work)they are pure. thankyou i love my red stars they were my first hens and have read they can be hard to go broody theyr'e the only chicks my grandads had trouble getting broody (he can get every other one to go which annoys my gran because all she has in her garden are chicken runs!) he was thrilled when she went broody ans said now we don't need a incubator!(hes never had one and the one he wanted was 500 pounds lol). thankyou for your help
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Ridgerunner

Crossing the Road
12 Years
Feb 2, 2009
27,100
19,561
857
Southeast Louisiana
I agree. You should not get monsters or deformed chicks. They should be perfectly normal. But you also asked about color.

There is no telling what we might call Red Stars here. That’s not a breed name, just an advertising name. Different hatcheries might call them red stars, gold stars, golden comets, red comets, cinnamon queens, golden buffs, or many other things. Calling them Red Stars doesn't tell me a whole lot about them.

They are not a breed but are crosses to start with. They are red sex links, which means the father was pure for the gold gene, the mother had the silver gene, and the other genes allowed the males to have yellow down at hatch and the females to have red down. There I no telling what breeds their parents might be. There is a long list of red roosters that can be used for the father and a long list of whitish hens that could be the mother.

Or they might be something else. It’s quite possible they are not crosses between regular breeds at all but are based on the commercial egg laying chickens. These are hybrids hatched from hybrids specially developed by selective breeding to produce sex linked chickens that lay a whole lot of eggs. If you have this type, the hens will have fairly small bodies compared to your Light Sussex. That’s so they can be pretty efficient at converting feed to eggs and not have to eat a lot of extra feed to maintain a bigger body.

With all that said and with your rooster being a Light Sussex, all the chicks that hatch should be yellow and the chicks should be white when they feather out. The white (silver gene) of the rooster will dominate the red (gold gene) of the hen so they should all be yellow at hatch.

That doesn’t mean they will all be identical. The pure Light Sussex will obviously look like Light Sussex. Some of the crosses with your Red Stars might too, but there is a real good chance they will have different markings and patterns on them. What that actually winds up being depends on the genetics of your Red Stars. So you won’t get a whole lot of variation in appearance with that cross and those chicks, but you should get some.

Good luck!
 

Bill Matthews

Songster
6 Years
Apr 3, 2013
334
44
100
To Lavender Pekins: After these chicks grow out keep some photos and post them. You never know what will turn up type and color wise since we don't know for sure the breeds crossed to produce the "Red Stars." Ridge Runner seems to know his stuff, so he's probably right. This being said, don't be really surprised if the" Red Star" fails to stay broody. I'm not being negative, just wish you had a more reliable broody breed to try this on. In any event, I'm pulling for you and best wishes.
 

Fred's Hens

Crowing
Premium Feather Member
9 Years
Since you're crossing what I assume are two purebreds of different breeds, what you should get would be bigger, healthier chicks, with hybrid vigour... They should in fact be better than either parent. But that's true for any truly good breeding.

I doubt it, frankly. The Red Star mix is already a hybrid, and as Ridgerunner said, and if it is a commercial layer being sold under that marketing name, it is already likely a super layer.

Next generation, especially if crossed with a Sussex, is quite likely to reduce egg laying. Not drastically so, but the science behind a commercial red sex link is pretty astute. I also don't foresee a jump in bird size either.

Is it fun to try such things? Yes. But don't be surprised if the chicks are all over the map in terms of color and even coloration of the feathers. As pretty as that Sussex is in the OP's avatar, I'd want to work on continuing that breed, making improvement in type and feathering in each subsequent generation. That is true breeding. Just putting birds together isn't really breeding, it is just making more chicks or propagation.

They'd be chickens, that's for sure. They'd like be quite healthy. No fears on that score. Enjoy your birds.
 

lavender pekins

Chirping
7 Years
Jun 16, 2012
117
4
83
thankyou everyone for your help im glad they wont turn out like aliens! bill matthews she has been sitting on them for 7 days now (well 9 but 7 since i added the new eggs?) so hoping she'll stay on them my grandad always said if they were going to come of them they would do so in the first 1-5 days so im just hoping hes right! freds hens how much would it reduce it's laying capability? i love my red stars number one they are so friendly and cuddle me and the one thats broody is the first hen ive been able to handle whiles't broody number two they are the only hens that my dad has ever liked and his favorites in fact he nearly cried when our dog grabbed one(we managed to keep her living still here today *few*) number three there egg laying ability so i was hoping by crossing them with the light sussex(who are already one of the best laying pure breeds!)i would get a colorful chicken that lays large quantities of eggs and one that goes broody often and likes cuddles will i still get that or will i get something completely different?
 

chooks4life

Crowing
6 Years
Apr 8, 2013
4,902
678
296
Australia
If, as Ridgerunner says, they are a cross already rather than the purebreds I assumed they were, obviously the hybrid vigour may be nonexistent and you may even get less productive offspring than the parents are, since the parents are already displaying all of any potential hybrid vigour that was inherent in that cross.

I know a lot of the linear purists here would possibly disagree with my reasoning and all the rest of it but I'm pretty keen to develop my own strain, based on mongrels with the rule of 'no good chook is a bad color'. I know it'll take me the rest of my life to begin to establish a truly good line, since I'm using absolute randombreds. It's great and important that a lot of people are preserving the heritage lines and rare breeds, but I think it's also important that some people work on new breeds. As long as you're willing to learn how to breed properly (outside of the maxim that preserving established breeds is the only 'good' way to breed), I don't see why not.

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True in some circumstances... But it's also how all breeds began, more or less. Just depends on how long and how carefully you keep 'putting birds together' and the strictness of adherence to a goal-oriented criteria governing how you choose the subsequent breeders out of the results.

I think we need to make a definition between 'breeding' as pertaining to recovering/sustaining an existing breed or strain, and 'breeding' as pertaining to developing a new breed or strain. Both are legitimate, one's just hated and frowned upon, that's all. It is true that possibly most people trying to establish new breeds are being wasteful and irresponsible with rare genetics as they are using purebreds. Using mongrels is a different matter.

Australia, like any country, should continue to develop its own breeds specific to its conditions, not to say that pure lines shouldn't be preserved. Each to their own.

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No guarantees, you'd really have to try it to know, and tell us what happens, though I'm sure the more experienced members could give you a really close idea. I'll be the first to admit to having much to learn!
 

Ridgerunner

Crossing the Road
12 Years
Feb 2, 2009
27,100
19,561
857
Southeast Louisiana
What you get when you cross chickens is that they inherit traits from both parents. That may be color or pattern, behaviors like broodiness or how they take confinement, size, how fast they gain weight or how efficient they are in converting feed to weight gain or feed to egg production, how many eggs they lay, size of those eggs, how early they start laying, just every trait you can imagine. There are a lot of different genes involved. With the randomness of how those different genes are inherited, you can get a whole lot of variety even from the same parents. It just depends on how purebred they are in the traits you are looking for.

If you choose which chickens you allow to breed and which eggs you hatch, you can strengthen certain traits you want. And you can reduce or eliminate traits you don’t want. To me that is what breeding is about. It’s simple but not easy. You have to know what traits you want to start with, and how to recognize those traits. The more ruthless you are about selecting which ones breed, the more you can control it. The more chicks you hatch, the better your selection to choose from. This last one can get expensive if you have to raise then long enough to observe those traits plus you have to do something with the ones you don’t want.

Don’t get too hung up on breed characteristics. There are breed tendencies but strain is much more important. Different people select which chickens breed in different flocks. If you have one flock of Light Sussex where they hatch eggs from hens that go broody a lot, that flock will tend to have hens that go broody a lot. If you hatch eggs only from hens that don’t go broody you soon have a flock where most of the hens are not going to go broody.

An example of the power of selective breeding. I saw an article a couple of years ago where a breeder that knew what they were doing took a flock of purebreds and split it into two separate flocks. For one flock he selected his breeders for large size. The other flock was bred for small size. With the same original genetics he wound up with one flock on average weighing 9 times as much as the average weight of the other flock. I don’t know how many generations he went through to get to this point, but he got there.

There are other issues involved, such as losing genetic diversity when you have only one rooster with your flock. It’s the opposite of hybrid vigor. The more genetic diversity you lose by inbreeding, the more likely you are to lose productivity or other bad things happen. There are different techniques to handle this. Serious breeders often use spiral breeding where they keep three separate flocks for breeding purposes and carefully match females from one flock with roosters from another. There are other techniques they use to achieve that.

What I do is bring in a new rooster every four or five generations to bring in some genetic diversity. When you do this, you aren’t sure what new genetics you are introducing. You may bring in some new traits that you have to breed out.

It’s a never-ending journey. You are never there. Even when you get where you want to go, you have to keep working to stay there. But I find it a fun journey.

Good luck!!!
 

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