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#36603 - 08/13/02 10:51 PM Blue Silkie Rooster and Rhode Island Red Hen
Aram Seattle Offline
Coop Keeper

Registered: 07/16/02
Posts: 547
Loc: Washington
I am planning to do this cross in hopes of getting some pullets that will be larger than a Silkie and still go broody.

I know that the feathers will be silkie, since that's a dominant gene. I know the broodiness will pass on, since that's dominant too. Will I get any sex linkages through skin color or feathers? The rooster is blue, but he has a straight comb and small yellowish speckless on his wings. I bought him as a Silkie, but I guess he has a little more than a Silkie going for him.

In general, what can I expect?

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#36604 - 08/14/02 08:07 AM Re: Blue Silkie Rooster and Rhode Island Red Hen
Anonymous
Unregistered


Actually, the silky feathered gene (h)hookless is a recessive gene. When a silkie is bred to any other bird, (H)hooked normal feathers will appear in all the offspring; unless the normal feathered bird is carrying hookless (which is not likely with a Rhode Island Red).

If your "silkie" has a straight comb, he is a long way from being a Silkie. The walnut, trifid, comb is dominant, and has already been lost in your bird. I'm just wondering if such a common trait has been lost through crossbreeding, how can you be sure that broodiness also has not been lost? I think your chances are good that he does still carry for broodiness, since every Silkie cross I've ever had was a good broody.

Does he carry most of the other traits of a Silkie? He should have a topknot, turquoise earlobes, black skin, dark eyes, mulberry comb, slate or black beak, grey or black legs, 5 toes, and feathering on legs and feet.

In a perfect world, I would start with a proven broody Silkie hen and mate her with a RIR rooster.

Good luck smile

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#36605 - 08/14/02 09:02 AM Re: Blue Silkie Rooster and Rhode Island Red Hen
Aram Seattle Offline
Coop Keeper

Registered: 07/16/02
Posts: 547
Loc: Washington
Yeah, he's got all of these things, except the 5 toes. He's got 5 on left and 6 on the right. smile It's kind of cool. The only nonsilkie things he's got are the comb and the specles.

I will breed him to my RIR hen that has once gone broody herself. So even if he is not extrememly purebred, I got a shot from both sides of the fence that his daughters be sitters.

How about the black skin color? Isn't that dominant? Is it sex-linked?

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#36606 - 08/14/02 05:31 PM Re: Blue Silkie Rooster and Rhode Island Red Hen
Anonymous
Unregistered


The dark skin is due in large part to fibromelanosis: If you want to read a little about it as well as the genetics of dark skin, please see the genetics pages (I'll try to link here) Online Poultry Genetics

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#36607 - 08/16/02 07:44 AM Re: Blue Silkie Rooster and Rhode Island Red Hen
R. Okimoto Offline
Lord of the Fowl

Registered: 07/18/02
Posts: 1498
Loc: Arkansas
Back in the late 80's there was a fellow that advertized RIR/Silkie cross pullets as broody hens. The claim was that they were larger, had normal feathers and were just as good of a mother as Silkies. I don't know the direction of his cross, but since a bantam dwarfing gene is known on the Z sex-chromosome, I'd expect the cross to have been RIR cock X Silkie hen to get the largest F1 females. Silkies are big for bantams, but he may have used artificial insemination.

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#36608 - 08/16/02 09:56 AM Re: Blue Silkie Rooster and Rhode Island Red Hen
CJR Online   content
Coop Master

Registered: 07/16/02
Posts: 8489
Loc: Montana
Years ago, I raised White Silkies. One Spring, I also got day old New Hampshire Reds for the freezer and to keep several laying hens. They free-ranged during the nice days and I did not worry about the little cockerels and my Silkie hens. Well, one hatch of 5 were crosses--and the NHR cockerels were not over 3 months of age! They were the prettiest kind of mottled "pink" birds. Loose feathered, but not Silkie feathered. I gave the lot away to a friend, who later lost them all to a racoon. That was not the only cross that happened, as a friend gave me an egg she said was from her Dutch--it was not, but was an OEGB cockerel, who also got in the mix before I found him a home--just one chick, a cockerel, BBRed with some stubs on the legs, softer feathering, a really ugly little fellow. Both he and his sire were found homes! What you see may or may not be what you get! CJR

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#36609 - 08/16/02 10:45 AM Re: Blue Silkie Rooster and Rhode Island Red Hen
Aram Seattle Offline
Coop Keeper

Registered: 07/16/02
Posts: 547
Loc: Washington
I was wandering, what if I use a Barred Rock hen instead of RIR hen. I think that a blue/gray silkie of mine does not have barring gene (kinda like RIR rooster), so I should be able to sex the chick from SilkieXBR cross by the white head spot. That is of course based on the assumption that a silkie rooster does not have barring gene?

Do you folks know?

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#36610 - 08/16/02 03:12 PM Re: Blue Silkie Rooster and Rhode Island Red Hen
R. Okimoto Offline
Lord of the Fowl

Registered: 07/18/02
Posts: 1498
Loc: Arkansas
Blue (Bl) messes up the expression of sex-linked barring to the extent that sometimes you can't tell if the blue birds are barred or not. You will have to look at the wing and tail feathers of your blue silkie to see if any of the feathers with some remaining structure could be barred.

If the silkie is not barred your sex-linked cross should work, but some of the blue chicks will be hard to type for the head spot. All male chicks should inherit barring from their mother and have a small head spot on the top of their heads. Expression is variable and sometimes you can't tell if a bird has a head spot or not, and sometimes females that aren't supposed to have a head spot have a light colored head or cream invading the head and you can't tell.

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#36611 - 08/16/02 10:34 PM Re: Blue Silkie Rooster and Rhode Island Red Hen
Anonymous
Unregistered


Your silkie is a barnie.
I had some out of MIchigan once. They were buff with lots of black in the tail and poor feet and crests, single comb. One in particular was the ugliest black and buff mixture, but she was the best mother i ever had, I did not keep her, scorned her for the white fluffy non broody show birds. What a waste.
The single comb and yellow(buff) specks are a sign of quality in this case.
Don't know what color the will be but even if crossed the "wrong" way for big birds the hens
should get better than silkie size, due to those commercial weight gain genetics.
I would not want a bird too big, even tho the idea is appealing in the barnyard: The smaller bird can set better, more efficiently and no trampled bantam chicks. And cross has no filth on the foot feathers, normal feathering (no dragged chicks) and are definetely better keepers than silkie. I found silkie and the other asian bantams to be chronic egg eaters and to lay out of season so here is two other things that may be solved by a cross.
I would like to see you suceed with your project. Silkie cross hens are like regular hens but trimmer cute dark faced and fuller feathers, appealing birds with personality.

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#36612 - 08/17/02 07:47 AM Re: Blue Silkie Rooster and Rhode Island Red Hen
Aram Seattle Offline
Coop Keeper

Registered: 07/16/02
Posts: 547
Loc: Washington
Excuse my ignorance, but I know that Barnevelders are referred to as Barnies. When you use barnie here, what do you mean, Incubator?

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