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Easter Egger Hen
One of the most popular hens at Chrisholm Historic Farmstead is an Easter Egger. She is a standard size chicken and has red and white feathers with greenish legs.
What makes her so special? Easter Eggers are not a purebred, however a “mutt” variety in the chicken world. They can lay a wide variety of egg colors. Their plumage also comes in many colors. Our hen lays green/olive eggs that sometimes have double yolks. Can you find her eggs in the carton below? This breed is a cross of an Araucana or Ameraucanas (the true blue colored egg layer) with other breeds.
Why do certain breeds lay colored eggs? Regarding the Araucanas, there is a gene responsible for the blue coloration called the oocyan. The pigment, called oocyanin that actually colors the egg is made in the chicken’s liver. Blue eggs are blue all they way through the shell, so it is blue inside and out. Other colored eggs are created when the “color” or “dye” is laid onto the shell during the development process inside the hen’s reproduction system. This is why you can vigorously scrub the brown color off a brown-tinted egg.
The MetroParks Easter Egg hen is not shy and loves interacting with park customers. She will sit on a lap and fall asleep with gentle strokes down her back. This hen is the first to meet farm caretakers at the door for a nice treat of dried mealworms.
Have you ever dyed eggs with natural ingredients? See the PDF below with instructions and have fun with the colors.
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