As you plan your chicken flock, you, like many others., might want to get chickens that lay different colored eggs. We’re all used to the white and brown eggs you can buy at the grocery store. But did you know there there are some chickens that lay green, blue, gray, pink, olive, and other colored eggs? Let’s look at these chickens that lay green eggs and, who knows, you might just want a few for your homestead.
What Gives The Green Eggs Their Color?
Did you read “Green Eggs and Ham” by Dr. Seuss as a child and wondered if such eggs even existed? They actually exist and are a lot of fun to have in your daily gathering of eggs.
But how do eggs get their shell color?
“All eggs start out with white shells. Those that are laid in shades other than white have pigments deposited on them as the eggs travel through the hen’s oviduct. The journey through the chicken’s oviduct takes approximately 26 hours. The shell takes roughly 20 hours to be complete.” (source)
Chickens That Lay Green Eggs
If you’re a new chicken owner, you might want to get one or two chickens that lay green eggs. It’s fun to get your own, naturally colored Easter eggs built into your flock. If you have children, they’ll squeal with delight when they see pretty colored eggs made by their beloved friends.
1. Isbar, also known as Silverudd Blue
Isbar (pronounced ice bar) chickens come from Sweden. Still fairly new and not common in America yet, Isbar chickens are a bit harder to find and considered a rare breed.
Isbar hens lay between 150 and 200 beautiful green eggs, in several shades per year on average. Some even have brown speckles.
This breed of chickens comes in blue, black, and splash colors and weighs between 5-7 pounds. With a pleasant temperament, Isbars are grat for homesteads with children or a growing family that wants to teach the children responsibility by having them care for the chickens.
2. Favaucana, a blend of Faverolles and Ameraucana breeds
A relatively new breed of chicken, Favacuana is a crossbreed between a couple of great chicken breeds: the Favorelle (which makes brown eggs) and the Ameraucana (which makes blue eggs)
Laying between 220-250 gorgeous sage-green-colored eggs per year, the favaucana chicken’s personality is a good combination of the breeds it comes from. They do well in the cold, are amazing foragers, and lay well throughout the year, including winter.
3. Ice Cream Bars, a crossbreed between Isbar and cream Legbar chickens
Just like the Favaucanas the Ice Cream is a fairly new breed of chicken, a cross between the Isbar and the Cream Legbars. The egg color for this breed tends to fall more under the bluish-green color, but it depends on the individual chicken. This egg color comes from the blue eggs of the Cream Legbars and the green from the Isbar.
As this is a fairly new breed it might be more difficult to find at the hatcheries.
A medium-sized bird, the ice cream bar hen will lay between 180-200 blue-green eggs per year.
Something else that is important is the fact that the bird is still a new breed so the temperament is not settled yet. Granted, it is being bred from 2 fairly docile breeds, but that does not always carry over to the new breed. so if you have children, keep an eye out to make sure they are gentle with your kids.
4. Ameraucana, also called Easter Eggers
The Ameraucana is a breed of chicken that comes from Chile, and a very popular breed.
Easter eggers are great layers with the egg production coming in at right around 250 eggs per year. Now, the production does let up quite a bit in the winter months and at some times can completely stop.
Ameraucanas a stocky, sturdy chickens, and so they are cold tolerant. The legs of the Ameraucana tend to be gray or green in color, which is different than the common yellow color that people have come used to seeing.
Easter Egger chickens come in both standard and bantam sizes. The standard size weighs roughly 4.5-6.5 pounds per bird with the males tending to weigh more. The height of the chickens is roughly 18 inches.
Temperament-wise, the Easter Egger chicken very easygoing and tends to be easy to handle, and perfect for families with children.
5. Olive Eggers
As you’ve probably seen a theme going on here, the Olive Eggers is another cross between other breeds of chicken. Olive Eggers come from mixing a blue egg layer, such as the Cream Legbar, Ameraucana, or Araucana with a brown egg layer such as Marans or Welsumer.
The result is a chicken that lays gorgeous olive eggs. Sadly, olive eggers aren’t producing a lot of eggs: they lay between 150 and 180 eggs per year. But nonetheless, you need one in your flock if you want a variety of green eggs in your collection.
To learn more about raising chickens, check out Fresh Eggs Daily: Raising Happy, Healthy Chickens…Naturally, by Lisa Steele.
FAQ about chickens that lay green eggs
Are green egg layers hard to find?
A common question that a lot of new homesteaders or first-time chicken owners have is how hard is it to find chickens that lay green eggs. The answer to this really depends on how particular you are about the breed of chicken you want. For example, Isbars and Ice Cream Bars are a lot harder to find than Easter Eggers. Yet, they all make beautiful green eggs.
Does the rooster determine the egg color?
A common misconception for a lot of new chicken owners is that the rooster determines the egg color. However, that is not the case. The roosters are only meant for fertilizing the eggs and protecting the hens. They do however influence their offspring’s egg color.
Is there a way to predict egg color?
Generally, you’ll know the egg color by the breed you have. But it’s also possible to predict egg color by looking at the chicken’s earlobe color. It might sound funny, but it’s true.
Are green eggs safe to eat?
Yes, green eggs are safe to eat: the only difference is the pigment of the shell, otherwise, the composition is the same as white or brown eggs.
Do green eggs taste different?
No, the green eggs do not taste any different. If your eggs taste different, you need to look at the chicken’s diet, as some foods such as garlic, onions, and flax seeds will change the flavor of the egg. For best-tasting eggs, give your chickens fresh greens.