The Olive Egger chicken is known for being calm and gentle. Famous for laying delicately hued green eggs, these birds are symbols of spring. But in reality, these fowl are not a purebred strain; rather, they are a hybrid.
You’ll need a male brown egg layer and a female blue egg layer to produce an Olive Egger. The resulting Olive Egger hen lays an array of egg colors, including the unusual olive/green variety.
Have you thought about keeping this breed? Read on to learn all about their needs, egg laying, personalities, and more.
You may also want to read about Easter Egg chickens.
What are olive egger chicken?
They look like a blend between a blue egg layer and a brown egg layer. Here are a few examples of the most typical crosses: Legbar x Maran, Ameraucana x Barnevelder and Araucana x Maran.
With a growing market for novelty items like colored eggs, this rare breed has captured the attention of many backyard poultry keepers.
Similar to Easter Eggers, Olive Egger chicken Hens will produce gorgeous olive-colored eggs. Three to four of these eggs should be laid each week (about 140-200 per year).
They can endure chilly winters just as well as scorching summers, showing off their remarkable adaptability. Depending on the temperament of the parent breeds, these chickens may also have a pleasant disposition.
Generally, this breed of chicken is a good option if you want a tame hen that produces colored eggs. Farmers have been breeding Olive Eggers since 1842, and backyard chicken keepers love them for their egg production and calm demeanor.
In addition to being rare, the Olive Egger Chicken is also known for its stunning appearance. The exact appearance will largely depend on the breed of the parents because there is no technical breed standard other than egg color.
The Ameraucana, Araucana, and Legbar are blue egg layers, and the Marans, Barnevelder, and Welsummer are brown egg layers, and are frequently bred together. Olive Eggers often emerge from the nest with a black or gray plumage because these are the more common colors among dark-skinned breeds. Olive Eggers, both hens and roosters, are about the average size for a chicken that is not a Bantam, weighing in at about 6-7 pounds.
Bear and muff features are also not uncommon among them. However, these characteristics are not present in all hybrids. The Olive Egger is a great breed to add to your flock if you want a wide range of colors and patterns in your chickens.
Predicting the Olive Egger chicken temperament can be challenging because it is heavily influenced by genetics.
You can learn a lot about the temperament of your Olive Egger by observing its parents. Although it is not foolproof, with such a genetically diverse breed, it is your best bet.
You can learn the most about the chicks’ personality from their parents, so find out if they go broody, are good with kids, and get along with other chickens.
Marans, a common brown egg laying breed, are used to create Olive Eggers because they are more reticent than regular chickens. Ameraucanas, a common blue laying breed, are frequently used in the breeding of Olive Eggers, despite the fact that they are more prone to anxiety and flightiness.
Your Olive Egger may take on these qualities. Overall, Olive Eggers are great for newcomers due to the friendly demeanor of both the hens and the roosters. Their reputation for friendliness and lack of disruptive behavior has earned them this label.
All Olive Eggers share a passion for food and, of course, their distinctive egg coloring. It doesn’t matter what kind of chickens you have, their dietary requirements will be the same.
Feed them a high-quality chick starter feed up until they are about 16 weeks old, at which point you can switch them to a complete laying feed. To ensure tough egg shells, taking a calcium supplement is also recommended.
Treating your Olive Eggers to the occasional piece of fruit or vegetable won’t bother them either. Check out What Can Chickens Eat for some additional snack ideas.
Additionally, they will always require access to pure water. To prevent your Olive Eggers from becoming dehydrated, keep their water from freezing over during the winter. It is still important to keep your chickens well hydrated all year round, not just when temperatures are high.