For years we have had a free range flock of Olive Eggers produced when an Ameraucana hen fell for our Marans roo and kept escaping her pen to be with him. Since we also always have free range
cochins, some of these Olive hens also have fuzzy legs. They have proven to be great layers of huge Olive Eggs as well as great moms, often appearing with broods of chicks they have "secretly"
This year. since we had some Ameraucana hens that just weren't up to the quality we want for our Am breeding pen, we decided to intentionally produce Olive Eggers with these hens added to our
Marans pen. The chicks hatched from these Ameraucana x Marans eggs should produce eggs like the one above, center. For comparison, we have a large white egg and a large Ameraucana egg also shown. Any
pullets we keep will go back into the Marans pen for even darker Olive eggs next generation.
Olive Egger eggs are available and we will also hatch them and sell chicks by pre-order only.
PAINT LEGHORNS: For a couple years we have been working on a patterened Leghorn that has the eye-appeal of the Exchequer and the vitality of the standard White Leghorn. In our
second generation of these crosses we have been pleasantly surprised with some neat looking "Paint" Leghorns. They are similar to a Paint Silkie in that they are a white based bird with random black
feathers. While the first generation of this cross yielded silver colored pullets with black speckles, this second gen is back to a pure white base with large black feathers or patches of
My F1 generation produced both solid White (no speckles) and “silver” or smutty colored chicks with black speckles. As they grew it turned out that all of the speckled chicks were pullets, though
not all of the white chicks were cockerels. I added these speckled pullets back into my Exchequer/White flock for the next season.
This year, the f2 generation has been recognizable from the additional f1s coming from the flock. The f2 cockerels are all white with a few small spots and the pullets are all white with larger,
random patches of black feathers. There is no mottling or lacing on the pullets’ black feathers, however the black on the cockerels' feathers is mottled or patterned rather than solid
creating the lighter, speckled appearance. A few of the pullets have also maintained Silver coloring in their head and neck feathers though this may fade out as they mature.
Since I was not aware at hatch that this coloration would appear to be sex-linked, I did not attempt to use coloration to sex the chicks but I think it would be possible based on the black spots
in the pullets’ down and the roos being solid yellow downed. I will track this better in future hatches now that I am looking for the difference.
Next season, for the f3 generation I am going to try 2 different crosses:
A new Exchequer roo with f2 pullets to see if I can get more color into the cockerels.
A group of f2 pullets and an f2 roo - This will be a very tight genetic cross so I will also start an unrelated flock to see if the results hold and to produce unrelated f1s to add to the mix. I
am also changing roos with the F1 hens to produce more genetically diverse f2s for the following year.
I am looking forward to next Spring to see where this goes J and I will add more
photos as the birds mature.
12/2013 DUE to the THEFT/Disappearance of our flock of Paint pullets, this project is on hold.....I hope to continue with it at a later time.