Which Would B The Better Egg "Machine"?

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by newchickens2009, Feb 24, 2012.

  1. newchickens2009

    newchickens2009 Chillin' With My Peeps

    571
    1
    141
    May 18, 2009
    BAHAMAS
    I need to expand my production flock which now consist of ISA Browns which I use for the sole purpose of selling eggs. I have some RIR hens and a roo which I can breed and use to do so with but I am curious if I should put my RIR roo over my ISA Brown hens? Will their off spring give me better layers than RIRs? Or should I just breed true RIRs?
     
  2. The Chickeneer

    The Chickeneer ~A Morning's Crow~

    I would have said white leghorn, but judging by the breeds you already have, you most likely want brown eggs. Well, i don't know about the breeding of the RIRs and ISA, but I think Australorps are the best egg "machicne" and lay brown eggs. I think they evenly match, or even outlay the white leghorn.....Good luck with your breed picking [​IMG]
     
  3. Bullitt

    Bullitt Chillin' With My Peeps

    2,235
    114
    201
    Jan 16, 2012
    Texas
    Do you just want brown eggs?

    White Leghorns are the best egg-layers. They lay 6 eggs a week on average in a year. Australorps are great also, but will lay 5 eggs a week on average in a year.

    ISA Browns are a hybrid cross of Rhode Island Reds and Rhode Island Whites, so if you breed your Rhode Island Red rooster to the ISA Browns you will get a variety of offspring. You won't have consistency and you will have to spend a lot of time figuring out which ones are the good egg-layers. You have to feed them all for at least five months before you know which ones are good layers.

    If you want to breed the chickens, breed the Rhode Island Reds. Are you happy with their egg production? Rhode Island Reds should produce 5 eggs a week on average in a year. If you breed the Rhode Island Reds, you know what you are going to get.

    Get a broody hen and stick the Rhode Island Red eggs under her. That is the cheapest and easiest way to hatch out chicks.
     
  4. Fred's Hens

    Fred's Hens Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

    Actually, the ISA is four way cross, with grandparent stock of A,B,C, and D. Highly specialized and selectively bred for over 35 years.

    Using an ISA in a breeding program of any kind is fairly frustrating. The "click" or "nick" of the hybridization is immediately lost and you simply won't see the laying vigor you did in the original. They lay fine, but the egg size is noticeably smaller. That's our experience.

    There'd be nothing wrong with putting your RIR over the ISAs. You'd get fine production red type birds. If the RIR isn't heritage or show type quality anyhow, there's not much reason not too. If he is heritage quality, I'd be putting him over equal quality RIR pullets.
     
    Last edited: Feb 25, 2012
  5. newchickens2009

    newchickens2009 Chillin' With My Peeps

    571
    1
    141
    May 18, 2009
    BAHAMAS
    For me brown eggs are a must as my customers say, and I quote "We do not want white eggs as they remind us of the nasty eggs we buy at the grocery store." We on here all know that if we feed them the same as our brown egg layers the inside is the same in both eggs just a different egg shell color, but if they want brown eggs I will sell they brown eggs.
    Just wanted to ask about another idea. I am in the process of getting some Delawares and I know that I can hatch sex-link chicks with my RIR roo over a Del hen. That way I don't have to waste a lot of time, money and feed raising chicks for so long to just find out they are roos. Will these sex-link hens lay better than RIR hens and I should use these instead?
     
  6. Fred's Hens

    Fred's Hens Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

    That RIRxDel is the way I'd go, just because I could sex the chicks immediately.

    Predicting laying potential from any mix is a crap-shoot. However, it could potentially produce excellent layers.
     
  7. Egghead_Jr

    Egghead_Jr Overrun With Chickens

    6,034
    839
    336
    Oct 16, 2010
    NEK, VT
    As Fred is saying, I'd even stick with the RIR if hatchery production reds as you know what the offspring will be opposed to a hit or miss offspring from ISA or Red/ISA mix.
     
  8. cwalsh2

    cwalsh2 Out Of The Brooder

    76
    7
    34
    Jul 4, 2011
    Hermosa South Dakota
    I doubt that you would see much difference in any of the crosses you mentioned. The Delaware cross may produce a superior meat bird, but it sounds like you focus on egg production. I played around with RIR,Barred Rock,Blondell (which is a production cross), and production reds,and Austra whites , crossed several different ways. The results always turned out good,but then all these breeds are similar. I got excellent layers of large brown eggs and a flock of hens that had a lot of variety in color and tasted good in the stewpot when they were 5 years old and slowed up on the laying. It did not seem to matter. Mostly I used the RIR rooster over the other breed hens. They all seemed to at least equal the parent stock. The only cross I did not care for was the austra whites which are white birds with black flecks on them and lay very large eggs. They were excellent layers but several were black, making a nice looking bird for the table difficult.
     
  9. Bullitt

    Bullitt Chillin' With My Peeps

    2,235
    114
    201
    Jan 16, 2012
    Texas
    A Rhode Island Red rooster and a Delaware hen is one way to produce Red Sex-Link hens. The pullets get the color of the father and the cockerels get the color of the mother. You could tell quickly which ones are pullets that way. They should be very good egg-layers. Most likely they would lay as well or better than the Rhode Island Reds. But if you breed these Sex-Link chickens you will get a variety of results.

    You might hatch out some Rhode Island Red hens' eggs also to find out how the Sex-Links and the Rhode Island Reds compare. You are also going to need a new Rhode Island Red rooster within a couple of years, and this would give it to you.
     
    Last edited: Feb 25, 2012
  10. 1muttsfan

    1muttsfan Overrun With Chickens

    19,026
    1,542
    396
    Mar 26, 2011
    Upper Peninsula Michigan
    A first-generation cross between certain purebreds will produce better than average offspring, but taking those offspring and breeding them will be much less productive or predictable. The RIR-Del cross will be benficial in producing sexable young, the cockerels should be good for meat, and the pullets very good layers of big brown eggs.
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by