Olive eggs at last

The pullets from our April 1st hatch are finally starting to lay. We’re pretty sure the dusky olive eggs are being laid by Jeb’s two daughters by Chewie, a Black Copper Marans roo.

Clockwise from upper right - Jeb's egg, new pullet, new pullet, Ameraucana egg.
Clockwise from upper right – Jeb’s egg, F2 egg, F2 egg, Ameraucana egg.

We also got our first blue-green Ameraucana egg from one of 4 pullets. Eventually we’ll cross these gals with Big Boy, our giant blue copper marans roo, to get more olive-egger hens.

Second generation Oliver pullets.
Second generation Oliver pullets.

Our current breeding pens have a Marans roo with Jeb (our first oliver), a cuckoo Marans, and a barred rock; a black Ameraucana roo with a Welsummer hen and a cuckoo Marans.

Welsummer-Oliver cross and blue copper Marans pullets.
Welsummer-Oliver cross and blue copper Marans pullets.

When our pullets from the April hatch are laying full-sized eggs, we’ll set up some pens to maximize their genetics too. That may very well be our last olive-egger experiment, since we are tentatively planning to list Seven Trees Farm for sale in the spring of 2015.

Blue genes plus blue genes add up to splash coloring in this pullet.
Blue genes plus blue genes add up to splash coloring in this pullet.

A recent regular visitor to Seven Trees Farm is this Pileated Woodpecker. He flies around laughing, lands in our trees for snack time, then flies off, still laughing. Pileated

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8 thoughts on “Olive eggs at last”

  1. Oh my, can you tell us why you are selling the farm? You have such a sweet place there and I certainly enjoy learning about all your experiments.

    1. We’ve always planned to move back to town at some point. Having extra time and energy to enjoy the awesomeness of this area while we’re still upright and functional is important, and we haven’t been able to do much of that in a while.

      2015 is the first time some personal and economic factors come together enough to step back and look at our options. If things don’t change too much between now & then, we expect to have a little more income, no car payment, a fair bit of equity, while we still have enough working life ahead of us to take on a new mortgage.

      But if things change for the worse, or if we decide we really aren’t done experimenting, we’ll stay longer, probably until retirement age.

      Mostly we’re enjoying the realization that we have a variety of directions to consider, and stay or go, we’ll have a blast.

      -j

      1. Here I am doing just the opposite. I can’t imagine living in the city any longer. Living a mile outside of Langley Wa. is close enough to social activities for us. We actually find ourselves going to more movies and other entertainment and socializing now than we ever did in Seattle. It was just too much of a hassle to get somewhere, park etc..
        I suppose if you are not moving to Seattle that won’t be such an issue. Langley has a unique environment though so we feel amazingly welcome here. A very feminine energy. We found this energy in Jemez Springs NM when we were there as well.

        I hope things work out well for you gals. Keep us all posted.

  2. There’s no way we could move back to Seattle. It was a great place to grow up, but Bellingham is as much ‘city’ as I can tolerate now. And only with a good-sized house lot 😀

    Being able to bounce from urban to very rural to semi-urban to semi-rural has been helpful in choosing a new home. Lots of experience and perspective in what it takes to make a good place to live….mostly that there isn’t any one perfect situation.

  3. We would be interested in getting some olive egger layers (if possible) before you leave this venture. Let us know what you are going to do with your flock. Our girls should start laying this month I believe.
    We are planning on getting a flock of meat birds in the spring to harvest at the end of next summer. Do you have any meat birds you recommend?

    1. We’ll have all kinds of olivers in the mix soon. Lots of our pullets haven’t started laying yet, so there might be more this month. Also we’re going to do a test hatch with our two new roos, and pullets from that batch would be laying early next spring.

      Planning at least one or two hatches next year too, so we’ll keep you posted.

      We have never raised ‘real’ meatbirds. Did one batch of speckled sussex which turned out more like soup chickens. We usually just butcher layer cockerels at crowing age, and soup chickens whenever we need flock space. A lot of people recommend freedom rangers since they have meat genetics but can also move around better than cornish crosses.

  4. I have been looking for some olive egg layers to add to my flock. I am in Grand Junction Colorado and haven’t had any luck finding any local pullets. Do you sell your chicks or know any olive egg breeders in Colorado I could contact? Haven’t had much luck with incubators and hatching myself. Thanks for any insight you can give.
    Susan

    1. Have you tried Backyard Chickens forum? There are a lot of oliver breeders there, but not sure what areas.
      We’re not ready to sell any chicks long-distance yet, maybe not until next spring.

      Sorry you’ve had bad luck hatching your own. We’ve had a few crummy hatches, but not enough to quit yet 🙂

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