What Chickens Lay Brown Eggs?

Last Updated: 09.12.19

 

Since feeding your chickens is so important, you should really try a PVC chicken feeder and see how that goes. However, since all chickens are mostly fed in the same way, why do some lay eggs of various colors? We know that blue eggs are the result of a chemical process in the bird’s body, so that’s something more different than usual.

But what about the white and the brown eggs? We’ve all seen them in a grocery store and we’ve all wondered why brown eggs seem to be more expensive. Because of this, we made this article especially for you so we can clear up the mystery and even see what chickens lay brown eggs.

 

Should I Buy Brown Eggs Or White Eggs?

Many of us have been a little puzzled at the price difference seen in a grocery store between brown eggs and white eggs. While most of us inevitably choose what we usually buy or whatever is on sale at that moment, there actually is a difference between the two types of eggs: the chicken.

The answer is so simple that it surprises you, right? White-feathered chickens with white earlobes will lay white eggs while red-feathered chickens sporting red ear lobes mostly lay brown eggs. From a nutritional standpoint, there is absolutely no difference between the two types and you should feel free to buy whatever you want.

“Folk wisdom” says that brown eggs tend to have a richer yolk but since yolk color is influenced by the amount of corn the chicken eats, this is not really a valid point. The color of the shell is not a value by which one can predict the intensity of the yolk’s color.

The difference in price comes from another logical perspective while having nothing to do with the egg’s quality. Chickens that lay brown eggs tend to be larger than chickens which lay white eggs so, naturally, their feeding costs more so the producers will charge higher prices. This is economy class 101.

 

 

Egg Society Today

Brown egg laying hens often appear in the conversations about the best egg-laying chickens in the world. They can be a productive backyard force that will fuel your house with eggs for years to come, yet they have often been overlooked as of late.

The reason for this is because a lot of the focus has been on colored eggs, especially the blue ones, as they turn blue earlier in the egg-laying process and the inside shell retains the same color. Because of this, white and blue eggs have been at the front of demand in recent years.

Brown eggs are way more common than blue ones but still a lot less popular than white ones. The reason for this is the industrialization of society because white-egg laying chickens are usually smaller and eat less, so they are more efficient from a cost standpoint when it comes to large scale egg-laying.

 

How Do Eggs Become Brown?

Egg color is all about genetic makeup, just like we humans are when it comes to our eyes and hair color. It’s also true that we are lucky enough to be able to change both of those things later on, should we choose to.

The egg-coloring process is truly fascinating. The egg always starts out white while the shell is still being formed. If it will be white or blue, the color is added early on and this is the reason why the colors of these eggs do not wear off when you rub them.

Brown-coloring is added a little later during the same process so it is not able to sink through the entire shell. That’s why when you open a brown egg, you can see the inside is actually white, as opposed to a blue one. In the case of the Marans chickens, they lay dark brown eggs and the layer of brown is extremely thick in comparison to other breeds.

It’s important to know that egg coloring does not affect in any way, shape or form its taste or nutritional values, as these are directly influenced by what and how much the chicken eats.

Since we’ve established this, let’s take a look at some of the best chicken breeds that are capable of laying brown eggs:

 

Australorp Chicken Breed

This type of chicken is a cross between an Orpington and a Rhode Island Red Chicken. They were developed in Australia in the early 20th century for the purpose of creating a chicken that was adaptable to the harsh climate there and able to lay a lot of eggs.

The Australorp lay beautiful light brown eggs and you can expect an average of 250 to 300 large eggs each year from a hen of this breed. They also hold the world record, with a champion hen laying 364 eggs in 365 days. Now that’s a lot of eggs!

These are usually calm, gentle birds which come with a relaxed attitude but can sometimes be a little broody.

 

Lohmann Brown Chicken Breed

As chicken eggs were beginning to gain importance in the last two centuries, scientists from all around the world began developing breeds that could be adaptable to their country or region’s weather conditions.

The Lohmann Brown chickens were developed by a German company and are one of the best hybrid chickens for egg laying. Other than Germany, they also seem to thrive in the climate of South Africa where they are loved by farmers.

They usually begin laying eggs after 4-5 months from hatching. While the eggs are fairly large, you can expect around 300 of them every year from a regular Lohmann Brown chicken.

They are docile and friendly birds, good to have around other chickens or even children. This is one of the reasons why bird-for-bird, they are the most widespread egg laying chicken on the planet.

 

Golden Comet Chicken Breed

Bred from a union between a White Rock hen and a New Hampshire rooster, Golden Comet chickens are also one of the more often encountered chickens on Earth. They start laying quite early, even after 16 weeks of life and you can expect between 250 and 300 eggs every year from them.

If you own one, you’ve got yourself a docile, very laid back bird which is rarely involved in fights or arguments with other chickens. They’re also curious and don’t mind being picked up by new people so overall this is a very nice breed to have in your backyard.

 

 

Sussex Chicken Breed

This breed actually comes in eight different colors and can be raised for egg laying and meat, so it serves a dual purpose. These chickens can lay brown, white or tinted eggs and the average amount is between 180 and 200 every year.

While a good addition to a mixed flock, you may sometimes get a snooty hen which is not very sociable or friendly to her flockmates. Usually, though, they are good, docile chickens.

 

Rhode Island Red Chicken Breed

A good ol’ American product, this breed was developed in Massachusetts and Rhode Island and it can also serve a dual purpose, being very good for laying and very good for its meat.

They start laying around 4 to 5 months but can even start earlier than other breeds and they will deliver you around 150 to 250 eggs for every 365 days. In true American fashion, these are spirited birds with a strongly developed personality and high energy. The roosters of this breed can even go beyond that and require a little calming-down every once in a while.

 

 

Bibliography:

1) What is the difference between white and brown eggs?

2) Are brown eggs healthier than white eggs?

3) The chemistry of eggshell color explained

4) Is one color of egg healthier than the other?

 

 

 

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