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Most people mix up Ameraucanas, Araucanas, and any mutt that lays a blue egg and calls them all Ameraucanas, or worse yet Easter Eggers, a catch all phrase with little meaning. For an excellent article on the differences in these terms read Ameraucana Myths & Facts by Vicky Thompson on the Ameraucanas Breeders Club. If you are interested in Ameraucanas you should join both the Ameraucanas Breeders Club (ABC) and The Ameraucana Alliance.
Ameraucana have pea combs, black or slate legs, and these wonderful fluffy ear muffs and beards. The nice thing about raising the black and blue varieties is that you can run the birds together and still get purebred Black Ameraucana and purebred Blue Ameraucana. The blue color gene, when inherited, simply reduces the amount of black pigment produced in the feather follicle causing black to look gray. When a chick inherits two copies of the blue gene, the pigment produced is reduced so much that the bird looks almost white with random splashes of gray/blue and black. This color variety is called "Splash."
In addition to the American Poultry Association's (APA) standard for the breed, our breeding program emphasizes egg color and size and lay rate.
Here is a sample of the eggs laid by our Ameraucana flock.
We are very pleased with the progress of our Ameraucana egg color and size. Although the breed is known and accepted to lay varying shades of blue and green hues of medium size, we specifically select for a large, dark, saturated sky blue colored egg.
Unfortunately, it is still possible for our line of Ameraucana to produce a white egg layer every now and then. This is due to the many genetics that play a role in the make up of the blue egg color. Some of our birds are heterozygous (O/o+) for the blue egg color gene. This means they lay a blue egg as the blue gene is dominant (O) over the white recessive (o+) gene, but can pass their white recessive gene on to their offspring. If bred to another heterozygous bird, the offspring will have a 25% chance of becoming a recessive dominate carrier (o+/o+) of the white gene allowing them to produce white eggs instead of blue. These birds are still pure Ameraucana and will conform to the APA's Standard of Perfection for the breed, but will lack the ability to produce the desired blue eggs that the breed is known for. These birds should not be bred forward if it all possible. Deer Run Farm is working diligently to identify and remove these birds to thoroughly transition the flock into becoming a totally homozygous blue egg flock (anticipated Spring of 2024). Most Ameraucana breeders aren't as aware of the genetic makeup in their flocks so we recommend asking before making your purchase.
Our line of Ameraucana have an excellent lay rate. They are the first birds to start laying in the spring. The breed isn't known for large eggs. By hatching out only the largest eggs over several generations we are increasing the egg size of our flock. At this point in our breeding program, pullet eggs still average a USDA medium size. In general, egg size continues to increase with the age of the hen with adults laying a large egg.
Here is a picture of day old Ameraucana chicks. Even their down has muffs and a beard!
Deer Run Farm employs flock breeding, so when you place an order for day old chicks you will get a mixture of Black Ameraucana and Blue Ameraucana chicks, and occassionally, a Splash Ameraucana chick. Basically, whatever black/blue/splash color ratio hatches out that week.
TO ORDER YOUR DAY OLD AMERAUCANA CHICKS CLICK HERE.