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Chicken Scratch Poultry

Friday, March 7, 2014

The Olive Egger - Could This Be The Breed For You

About 4 years ago we decided to do an experiment here on the farm, I had heard of crossing chicken breeds to get different egg colors and found it fascinating.  So we decided to cross the Ameraucana with the Black Copper Marans.   One breed being a blue egg layer and the other a dark chocolate egg layer.   Finding out what your end product will be is a very long process since it takes a chicken any where from 6 to 8 months or longer to produce that first egg.  So the waiting began....
I had seen green eggs before and thought them to be beautiful but wasn't sure what to expect of the cross we had produced.  You can obtain different shades of green depending on the breed you are crossing.  A lighter brown egg layer will give you a lighter shade of green, a darker brown egg layer gives you a darker green.
I must say when we finally got our first egg from our cross breed it was magnificent!  It was one of the most impressive eggs I've ever seen.  It wasn't a pale washed out green, it was a deep Olive green.

I shared with you  a couple of weeks ago about the Ameraucana and how the blue egg layer colors the egg all the way through, the inside of the shell is the same as the outside.  Well the Olive Egger colors the egg blue and a puts a brown over lay on the outside, and brown over blue makes a beautiful green. When you crack the egg open the inside is blue.  It's really pretty amazing.  It's difficult to see in this photo with the lighting.


The Olive Egger  can take on the characteristics of the Ameraucana or the Black Copper Marans or both.  Some will have feathered legs like the Marans some do not.  Some will have coppering on the heads.  Others have the puffy cheeks like the Ameraucana.   We have blue or black Olive Eggers. This black hen has slight coppering on her head.
The Olive Egger is a very good layer of a large egg. I think they are better egg producers than the Black Copper Marans.  This most likely is simply because it is a cross breed.   They can be slow to mature like the Ameraucanas.
 I think the Blue Olive Eggers are just beautiful, she has some very nice puffy cheeks.  The Olives here on the farm are a skittish more stand offish bird than a lot of the other breeds.  I said this a couple weeks ago about the Ameraucanas also.  Although once again I don't hear this from my customers.  They always tell me they are the sweetest bird they have and absolutely love them.




If your looking for amazing egg color, look no farther than the Olive Egger. 
Now you can have green eggs and ham.
Have a Great Day!
Angie

14 comments:

  1. I just love our Olive Eggers from you! And in fact I'm hatching more. I do find them extremely friendly, far friendlier than either the Marans or Ameraucana breed, which is kind of odd - but they are some of our favorite hens on our farm!
    Lisa
    Fresh Eggs Daily

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    1. Thanks for the comment :) Good luck on the hatch.

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  2. I'm curious, do you always need to cross the americanas with the marans? Or can you get an olive egg by breedung two olive eggers? Or is it like hybrid vegetables where you don't know what you will get when the hybrid has offspring?

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    1. You can cross any blue egg layer with a brown egg layer and get a green egg. We just get a darker green when using the Marans.

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  3. I get those Olive (I call them camo) eggs by crossing any of my brown egg layers with the Ameraucana's... might not be as dark as with a Maran.. but still pretty cool!!!

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  4. I'm wondering if you know which gene an OE rooster would carry? Mine has a pea comb so I'm guessing blue?? I have 2 hens and a rooster I got in a mixed order from you this past July. My little blue hen wad the first to lay. The are very sweet hens and the rooster is friendly also. Love the green eggs!!

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  5. Is your roo for the Olive Eggers first generation an Ameraucana or a Marans? I have a Pure bred Ameraucana Roo and pure bred French Blue and Black Copper Marans hens. So I could get an Olive Egger chick from them, right? Is it better to have an Ameraucana Roo or a Marans Roo to carry on a more guaranteed blue gene?

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    1. We have Ameraucana hens with a Black copper roo. We get a nice dark green egg this way.

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  6. Have you ever had one of your BCM olive eggers come out with a ton of copper? I just found out from the farm I got one of my BCM's that she is in fact an olive egger and not a BCM though she's yet to lay her first egg. I haven't seen any photos of an olive egger looking like this. I think she's a beauty. She even has feathered legs! Can't wait for the first egg! https://www.flickr.com/photos/gapey/15867052216/

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    1. after more research I'm finding she most likely won't lay olive eggs because she doesn't have a pea comb. Bummer!

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  7. We just purchased an Olive egger rooster to add to our flock. We have some easter egger hens, leghorns and a variety of brown layers. I am wondering what the resulting eggs will be with the combination of the OE rooster and the various hens? Anyone have an idea? My hens will not lay for a another month or so.

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  8. I have an olive egger rooster that looks exactly like a copper maran with puffy cheeks. If I breed him with an americauna will I get hens that lay darker olive eggs?

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  9. I have an olive egger rooster that looks exactly like a copper maran with puffy cheeks. If I breed him with an americauna will I get hens that lay darker olive eggs?

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  10. Thanks for sharing about the blue egg being blue all the way through and how the olive egger is also blue, but with a layer of brown over it, making it green. We have a chicken we were told was an ameraucana. She looks like one but lays olive green eggs. Upon breaking one of her eggs open we see blue on the inside and a olive green on the outside. Fascinating.

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