White Leghorn Roosters...what to cross them with?

Discussion in 'Chicken Breeders & Hatcheries' started by livestock10, Dec 8, 2013.

  1. livestock10

    livestock10 New Egg

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    I have 2 leghorn roosters and wanted to try breeding them with either Black Austrolorps , Red Sex-Links ,or Rhoad Island Red but not sacrifice egg production or size. What do you think?
     
  2. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Chicken Obsessed

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    What do you mean by “not sacrificing egg production or size”? Are you talking about the size of the chicken? Do you want larger chickens for the meat or smaller chickens because they are more efficient at converting feed to eggs? Or are you talking about the size of the eggs?

    Egg laying is an inherited trait. The rooster’s genetic contribution is just as important as the hen’s since he contributes as many genes. If the hen lays a lot of big eggs, her pullets will inherit that trait. If the rooster comes from a flock that lays a lot of large eggs, the pullets will inherit that trait. If the hen or rooster come from flocks that do not lay a lot of large eggs, the pullets will inherit that too. If one of the parents comes from a flock that lays a lot of large eggs but the other parent comes from a flock that does not lay a lot of large eggs, the pullet will probably lay somewhere in between the parents.

    Leghorns usually lay a lot of large eggs. Your roosters will contribute that trait to the offspring. How do your hens lay? Kind of average out lots of large eggs from the leghorns with whatever you are seeing those hens lay and you will have a fairly good idea of what to expect.

    Size of the chickens works the same way. Leghorns are going to be small and not have a lot of meat on them. Average that size out with the size contributed by the hen’s genetics and you can get a rough idea of the average size of the offspring.

    These are just averages. An individual may be closer to the father or closer to the mother but the overall average of the chicks that hatch should be pretty close to the middle.

    I’m not sure that is the answer you were looking for but then I’m not exactly sure what information you are really after. All those should make nice hens.
     
  3. livestock10

    livestock10 New Egg

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    Mar 10, 2013
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    No, that is just what I wanted. Large eggs and a lot of them, just didn't know exactly how to go about selecting the hens to breed with the roosters.

    Thanks
     
  4. Bullitt

    Bullitt Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Are those the three types of hens you have available in your flock? Otherwise, why those three types?

    White Leghorn is the best breed for eggs. If you cross your roosters with any of the types you named, you will get chickens that are bigger than a Leghorn. As mentioned, the pullet gets its laying ability from the father. So your pullets should lay well.

    Based on the choices you named, I think a White Leghorn and Rhode Island Red should be interesting.

    An Australorp rooster and White Leghorn hen are used to create what is called an Austra White. http://www.cacklehatchery.com/page28.htm

    I am guessing the offspring would look different if the cross is done with a White Leghorn rooster.

    If you breed your roosters to a Red Sex-Link you will get a variety of offspring because the Red Sex-Link is a cross itself.

    You might try breeding the three types of hens and find out which offspring you like best.
     
    Last edited: Dec 9, 2013

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