Easter Egger: Everything You Need To Know About This Chicken

Easter Egger- Everything You Need To Know About This Chicken

Whilst not strictly purebred, the Easter Egger has become a backyard favorite across America. With its cute looks and vibrant personality, what’s not to like?

They are known as Easter Eggers because they can lay a wide variety of egg colors, and their plumage can also be in various colors.

Generally, in the US, an Easter Egger is a bird that is understood to carry the blue egg laying gene from its parent stock (the Araucana or Ameraucana).

Although primarily thought of as an egg layer, they make a reasonable dual-purpose breed.

This article covers everything you need to know about them, including their temperament, egg-laying ability, and much more…

Easter Egger

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  • Protection Sensor - Built-in sensor when closing to detect when there is an obstruction under the door to prevent injury to chickens
  • Protects Chickens From Predators - Due to it's design, the notches the gear uses to open and close the door act as a self locking mechanism that prevents predators from breaking into the chicken coop. With this your chickens are protected and you can enjoy fresh eggs in the morning
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  • Egg Armor For Your Girls Eggs - Mixture of whole, half, bits AND POWDER of black soldier fly larvae that you can mix in your chicken's feed. It increases the strength of your girls' eggshells.
  • Healthier Feathers - This product is better than bulk dried mealworms and helps keep your girls' feathers healthy and grow back quicker during molting season.
  • Laying More Eggs - Because of the nutrient dense profile of dried black soldier fly larva, your hen's egg production will increase!
  • Totally Safe for Reptiles and Other Birds - Happy Grubs is worm food that can also be enjoyed as bird food, reptile food, and turtles as a treat!
  • Easy-To-Use Scooper - Our bag comes with a scooper that makes our bsfl mixture and powder easy to pour into a bowl or add to your typical chicken feed. It also has a clip so you can clip it onto the resealable bag. You can use it for feeding your other pets too!

History and Background of Easter Eggers

Easter Egger

These lovable ‘mutts’ were created when people started crossing Araucana or Ameraucanas with other breeds.

The results of these crossings led to multi-colored eggs and an adorable-looking bird!

As we know, the Araucana and Ameraucana both possess the gene for laying blue eggs. So when a breed that lays brown eggs is crossed with an Araucana or Ameraucana, the result is a green/olive-colored egg.

Easter Eggers have been around for quite a while now and have lost none of their popularity; in fact, they are becoming even more popular for backyard chicken folks because of their colored eggs and their low-maintenance lifestyle.

Meet the Parents

We can’t be entirely sure who their parents are. However, it is widely accepted that the parents are Araucana and Ameraucana.

Araucana

The original Araucanas were brought to the US from Chile, South America, in the 1930s. They are rumpless birds which means they have no tail and no coccyx.

They have ear ‘tufts’ and a pea comb. The ear tuft gene can be lethal to the embryos. If both parent birds have it, most of the chicks will die in the shell, hence their rarity. They are actually a mix of Collonca and Quetros chickens from the area where they were first found and carry the dominant blue gene for eggs.

Ameraucana

The Ameraucana was bred from mixed-breed chickens and Araucanas. They were developed to the breeders’ liking, and so a standard was issued.

They were bred to retain the blue gene for eggs but eliminate the parents’ lethal gene, which caused ear tufts.

Easter Egger

Appearance

The Easter Egger can literally be a mixed bag of features. They can have any comb, with single and pea being the most common (depends on their parents).

Their ear lobes can be any color but are usually red or white, and occasionally a bird will have ear tufts. The wattles on both sexes are red but small.

Facial features can include all, some or no muffs and/or beards, giving them a look that some folks describe as chipmunk-ish.

They usually have a tail, but because of the Araucana genes, some birds may be rumpless.

The legs are usually clean, and the shanks can be any color, from yellow to slate blue/green. The foot has four toes, and the footpad, like the shanks, can be any color.

It’s really not possible to give a ‘true’ coloration of Easter Egger. Their feathers can come in solid colors, patterns, and splashes of any color. It depends on what plumage the parent birds had and which of those colors become genetically dominant.

They are small for a standard chicken, with the boys weighing around 5lb and the girls 4lb.

Standard

As the Easter Egger is a hybrid, there is no set standard for them.

Why Do Easter Eggers Lay Blue Eggs?

Some hens laid blue eggs were a mystery that we did not unravel until 2013 following the mapping of the chicken genome.

We found that certain breeds (Araucana, Dongxiang, and Lushi) had been infected with a retrovirus that had inserted itself into the chicken’s DNA.

The gene responsible for this blue coloration is called oocyan, and the pigment that colors the egg is made from a liver pigment called oocyanin.

The big difference between colored and blue eggs is that the blue color permeates through the shell, blue inside and out. Brown or tinted eggs are created when a ‘dye’ called protoporphyrin is laid onto the shell. That’s why when you vigorously clean a brown egg, you can sometimes take the pigment off!

If you want a deeper look into blue eggs, see our article.

Easter Egger

Disposition

A sunny, outgoing disposition would probably best describe them. They are friendly, curious, and gentle. Egger’s aren’t bully birds and may get picked on by more assertive breeds, so keep a cautious eye on them with others.

They would be most suitable with easygoing non-aggressive types like Salmon Faverolles or Cochins.

Easter Egger’s are not shy and often approach humans looking for treats or some lap time. They are great with kids, and the kids love them right back for their personality and colorful eggs.

Egg Laying and Broodiness

Easter Egger Chicken

They are good layers, producing 4 large eggs each week (that’s in the range of 200 per year).

You should know that whatever color eggs the hen lays will be the only color she lays – they don’t do rainbow assortments. But if you have several hens, you are likely to get a good variety of colors in your egg box.

They seldom go broody, so they devote most of their time to laying those wonderful eggs.

Health Issues

They are healthy and vigorous birds. No particular health issues are other than the usual problems with parasites, especially birds with beards and muffs.

Is The Easter Egger Right For You?

If you want friendly hens and colorful eggs, look no further than the Easter Egger. They may not have a ‘pedigree,’ but they certainly make up for it in many other ways.

Easter Egger’s are delightful birds, each with their own individual looks and personality. They aren’t a noisy bird so shouldn’t cause problems with the neighbors.

Although they enjoy free-ranging, they will tolerate confinement well enough. However, they are curious and active, so try to provide them with things to explore in their pen not to get bored.

If you let them free-range, they will supplement their diet quite handsomely, reducing your feed bill slightly!

They are hardy to both heat and cold and can tolerate various environments as long as they have life necessities (food, water, and shelter).

Summary

Chick season is almost upon us, and as you can over all those fluffy little peeps, you may come across some labeled as Americanas.

If they cost under $5.00 per bird, these are most likely to be mislabeled, Easter Eggers.

True Araucanas or Ameraucanas will seldom, if ever, be found in a feed store, and they most certainly will cost a lot more than $5.00.

For many people, the novelty of having different colored eggs is a great selling point. Not only do you get different colored eggs, but the chicks can also grow up to look very different from each other.

These birds are low maintenance and will repay you handsomely with beautiful eggs. They are quite remarkable in that they have developed an almost cult-like following despite not being ‘pedigrees’!

Our Choice for All-In-One Automatic Chicken Coop Door

Happy Coop Door - Weatherproof Automatic Chicken Coop Door Open/Close with Timer/Light Sensor, Predator Resistant Self-Locking Gears, Protection Sensor
  • Plug and Play Design - Takes 10 minutes to install the door
  • Up to 6 Months of Power with AA batteries - You don't need an outlet for the door to work, it functions on 4 AA batteries or a 6V battery (adapter included)
  • Protection Sensor - Built-in sensor when closing to detect when there is an obstruction under the door to prevent injury to chickens
  • Protects Chickens From Predators - Due to it's design, the notches the gear uses to open and close the door act as a self locking mechanism that prevents predators from breaking into the chicken coop. With this your chickens are protected and you can enjoy fresh eggs in the morning
  • Door Will Open if Hell Freezes Over, Rain or Shine - Our weatherproof design has been tested to work during rainy weather as well as extreme cold temperatures as cold as 5°F

Our Choice For Best Chicken Treats

HAPPY GRUBS - ULTIMATE MIXTURE OF WHOLE, HALF, AND POWDER OF BSFL FEED - CHICKEN FEED MIXTURE - 50X-80X More Calcium Than Meal Worms - NON-GMO, Molting Treatment, Great For Wild Birds, Reptiles, Ducks
  • Egg Armor For Your Girls Eggs - Mixture of whole, half, bits AND POWDER of black soldier fly larvae that you can mix in your chicken's feed. It increases the strength of your girls' eggshells.
  • Healthier Feathers - This product is better than bulk dried mealworms and helps keep your girls' feathers healthy and grow back quicker during molting season.
  • Laying More Eggs - Because of the nutrient dense profile of dried black soldier fly larva, your hen's egg production will increase!
  • Totally Safe for Reptiles and Other Birds - Happy Grubs is worm food that can also be enjoyed as bird food, reptile food, and turtles as a treat!
  • Easy-To-Use Scooper - Our bag comes with a scooper that makes our bsfl mixture and powder easy to pour into a bowl or add to your typical chicken feed. It also has a clip so you can clip it onto the resealable bag. You can use it for feeding your other pets too!

Do you keep Easter Eggers? We would love to hear from you in the comments section below…

Easter Egger


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62 thoughts on “Easter Egger: Everything You Need To Know About This Chicken

  1. I enjoy these message I get lots of great information
    I have 1 of these Easter egg chicken she is great and lay teal color eggs

  2. I have several Easter Eggers. I have found that they their first eggs at approximately 9 months old which was hard for me to wait to see that beautiful egg!
    Every one of mine has a different mix of feather colors. I absolutely love them!

    1. I’m in Indiana where do you find them? I’ve been trying to find a place to get some chicks or a year old but, I can’t seem to.

      1. I live in indiana northwest and get them from chesterton feed and garden and you can even order them online. but look at your stores like big R and feed and garden stores first

      2. I got them at Rural King. They didn’t have any in stock, but I asked for them to be ordered and just had to wait until they came in.

      3. We purchased ours in April of this year from a place called HOOVER’S HATCHERY. Their address is
        P.O. BOX 200
        RUDD, IA. 50471
        I think but not sure that their phone # is
        1-800-247-7014

      4. I’m in Muncie Indiana and have a bunch… we let our chickens hatch all summer. We get all colors of eggs but I don’t know exactly what they are. You’re welcome to see what I have if you’d like. Find me on Facebook and let me know you’re interested in the chickens. My name is Melissa Fletcher

      5. Hi Angela Colton, If you want to hatch the eggs like I did, I bought my Easter Eggers off of eBay from a farm in El Paso, since I live in Texas. Click on places that are close to you. They are very affordable. I received 15 with an order that advertised a dozen, which was really nice. They cost less than $20.

      6. Meyer Hatchery here in Ohio has Easter Eggers. You can order as few as 3. My Pet Chicken Hatchery also has them.

      7. Jenks hatchery. We are in central Texas. Lost 1 in transit, but they arrived healthy Feb. 10, 2021. Got our first egg at 17 weeks and have been blessed with many since!

    2. Received an Easter Egger rooster from a friend, no beautiful eggs but a beautiful coloration and personality with the cutest puffy cheeks!

  3. My Easter Egger is so sweet and smart. She gets along great with my 2 Isbars and indeed lays pretty blue/green eggs 4 times a week. She loves attention and crouches down beside me to be picked up and held. I live in Missouri and she has no problem with the winter weather or hot summer. She is orange with little ear muffs and a full tail. I highly recommend this “breed” for beginners to experts.

  4. I have five Easter Eggers. They are quite lovely. They have wonderful dispositions and love time spent with you. They enjoy being held and having their backs rubbed. They sing sweet songs when you are with them. Their eggs are beautiful either blue or green with pretty insides. They are quite hardy as well as I live in the Northeast. They also are very proud to give you eggs as they always join me for gathering. They respond well to praise. They also spend time with me first when I bring their feed. Quite a good fit for a family hen. I love my girls!

  5. I put my coop close to my bedroom window so my two Easter egger ladies can sing to me in the morning and I can sing back. Absolutely love my girls. They sit in my lap for treats and both lay pretty much an egg a day when the weather’s right. Too many damp dreary days they stop laying for a day or two, otherwise cold or warm, they’re working hard.

    1. We have two Easter eggers, just ready to move out to their new coop. I have noticed however, they prefer greens i.e. clover and grass over worms! Will sometimes not eat the worms?! Is this normal?

      1. Yes very normal. One of my older flocks avoids warms, another flock would scratch until they found some.
        Claire

  6. I have 2 flocks of EE’s, 14 total birds. One flock from Cackle and one from TSC….one of my favorite breeds!

  7. I have one EE. She’s as great as the article suggests. She’s 4 years old.
    But about a month ago, she laid a “rubber” egg, and has not laid since. The coop hasn’t changed, the location hasn’t changed. I keep the coop clean and feed the girls layer pellets and kitchen scraps. They free range and have oyster shell available.
    Any ideas? She may wind up in the Crock Pot if the situation doesn’t improve!
    Thank you,
    –Dan

  8. i have three easter egger chicks and was just searchung the web for info about this chicken.
    helps alot. cant wait for them to start growing!!

  9. I have six Easter Eggers . . . at least that was what I was told. They haven’t started laying yet. But, I read somewhere that if a chicken has yellow legs, they DON’T have the colored egg gene. Five of my girls have yellow leg. Tell me this ISN’T true!!

    1. Fear not! Some of my girls have yellow legs and all of the eggs are a variation of blue. My brother keeps a bigger flock and gets a wider variety of colors including brown, but it depends on what breeds we’re mixed in with the blue genes. Each egg still feels like a gift from my little honeys – I hope you have a great experience with your girls! ?

  10. I have three EE chickens and they are very sweet! Each one flies up and sits on my shoulders… one prefers to sit on my head-no joke. They don’t seem very assertive and unfortunetly my other chickens tend to pick on them.

  11. I have four EE that were hatched on St. Patrick’s Day. Just waiting for those first eggs now. We have one Americana in our older coop that gives us pretty green eggs a few times a week. And as I remember she was behind laying her first egg from the other hens. However one of my Hens seems to be a Roo. He looks totally different than the other three with his large fluffy tail. Unfortunately we can’t keep a Roo in our town, and I’m at a loss at what to do with him.

    1. An egg is an egg. They arent any different nutritionally speaking no matter what color they are. One egg a day is the correct amount of cholesterol for your cells (per my nutrition class.) I don’t imagine you need much more cholesterol when pregnant.

  12. I own a mixed flock,but I must say for personality hands down it’s my Easter Eggers…. Beautiful birds to look at also. They are all pets to me ,but with egg benefits of course. I am always looking to add new members, different breeds to our chicken family. Best egg layers for sure though are my Leghorns….. 1 egg a day?❤

  13. I bought 8 EEeggs to hatch. Photo showed gorgeous colored eggs.
    The ones I recieved are so pale blue look almost white.
    Does this mean my Henson will lay very light as as that’s what they came out of?

  14. I went out to the coop in the afternoon to discover my black EE hen no longer had her tuffs! She has bald patches on each cheek and under her beak. What can this be from and will it grow back? She has 6 other hens as company: 2 RIR’s, 2 Buffs, 1 EE, 1 Brahma. One of the Reds is a bit mean but I’ve never seen her pulling out feathers.

  15. Can anyone tell me if you have introduced new chickens to a flock of Easter Eggers? How did it work out? I have not had success with introducing other breeds of chickens to each other, tried all the methods suggested. Am hoping the Easter Eggers might be easier to introduce new chickens to their flock. Thanks for any help

    1. I have not introduced a new flock to my Easter Eggers, but I think that the Easter Eggers will accept them better than your average breed. Also, it depends on what breed you are hoping to introduce to your Easter Eggers, because some breeds, like Wyandottes, will do better with the older chickens and will not let themselves be picked on. Hope this helps.

    2. I have 2 EE Roos and thy aremean to all my birds especially my polish Roo, anyone else have this problem?

  16. I purchased my 4 Lavender Ameraucana’s from Cackle Hatchery in Missouri. They came so incredibly well protected as they arrived in early March last year on our coldest day of the year. Even had little heat pad inside the shipment for them. They are all beautiful and lay gorgeous blue/teal colored eggs. I also have a “regular” Easter Egger who is my most prolific with pale green eggs, and a Lavender Orpington whose eggs are pink.

  17. we have 15 of the EEs I just love them. I get pink green and teal. We are planning to get out of them, but I’m trying to talk my husband into just keeping the EE to raise. Wish me luck.

    1. I hope you get to keep your EE. I’m trying to talk my husband into raising and selling in GA because it was so hard for me to find mine.

  18. I just got my 1st Easter Egger. She lays slate blue/grey eggs and is adorable. She’ll even eat from my 7 yr old’s hand. The other chickens (Leghorn and Rhode Island) don’t want ANYTHING to do with that hyper little guy.
    I’m going to pick up another Easter Egger next month. I guess chickens are like potato chips….can’t have just one. (or two. or three…. lol)

  19. I love my Easter Eggers! We have two and they lay every other day so I get one green egg daily from the two. They love to have under their beak scratched. We have 11 hens, 6 different breeds; they all love worms; I think they might like my peas our of my garden the best, then kale or spinach. Our hens lay all winter, maybe decline by 10% but we feed really well all year round. They get greens every couple days in addition to free ranging 2 hrs minimal a day on our 1/2 acre fenced.

  20. I have 2 Easter Eggers and I love them both.They each lay around 5-6 eggs a week! One of them is white and orange, the other is gray and gold. They are both very friendly and love to be held. EEs rule!

  21. I just ordered some EEs from Meyer Hatchery for our grandkids. We’re giving these to them for Easter rather than giving Easter baskets. They are all so excited. I can’t wait till they arrive!

  22. I just bought 6 Easter Egger chicks I will keep them in under heat for a few weeks. How soon can I introduce them to my flock of 3 year old RI Reds and will they be welcome

  23. I bought four chicks and were told they are Rhode Island Reds. Well two are the other two have turned out to be Easter Eggers. They are best chicks ever!! They are super friendly and lovable. I love my Reds too but they are ok to be out in their own. The EE love to be around people. They are awesome

  24. Well mine doesn’t have this sweet trait. She’s a gorgeous hen but is quite the bully. She lays beautiful large green eggs an average of 5 days a week.

  25. Hi All,
    I have 1 easter egger. She is almost 5 months old to the day and just played her first egg. Nicely formed green one. I was so surprised!

  26. I would like some assistance; I had bought hens, but one friend says they are roosters and another says they’re hens. First says it’s because they have long, sharp saddle feathers. (I had to look up what saddle feathers are) They don’t have spurs or waddles. One does crow. Neither lays eggs yet. Only 3 1/2 months old. Find me on Facebook for pics, because I’m confused about what I have.

  27. Still not sure what two of our hens are very pretty though one is blk with white spots and stipes on feathers and mostly blk further base has white spot looks like tuff’s at ears but she is beautiful and small and the one we got with her is solid chocolate brown with blk to drk brown tailfeathers very fluffy and very vocal like chrups and chatters those two are all ways to gather we got them together they are to youngest members but they quickly are moving up in peaking order two of them turned out to be roosters the sold why one very large meat cross link chk he rules the roost and the other the Rhode island red is a rooster we think pointed comb on top and waddles not to large but he’s lost all his tail feathers and getting tall no crowing yet he’s the younger off the two roosters he still let’s our son catch him and hold him along with the hens we decide to let them roam during the day last couple of days seen them go back to coop twice in the day before evening to drink so we put them up then in coop area they kept flying up to roost on fence and fly out so this way we hope they come back regular once get the idea of going in for the night our son is very attached and me too to be honest we hope they won’t get lost and we worry about them going to far we have 10acres mostly woods and creek but some neighbors and busy main road would be heart broken if got to road and hit no eggs yet and they are six to seven months old all ready any idea when they may mature yet the rooster trust his best to breed he’s to big and hope that’s a sign they are all most ready to lay .the other hens three are golden comets and two not sure about them either favor the americana blk with green shimmer on feathers and around neck area is edged in golden color looks like painted edges and they are fairly large and under feathers very fluffy solid blk not sure what they are one has more provinces comb all most like the roos but hope it’s not we don’t have enough hens for three roos and I don’t want them fighting each other and my husband says no more hens for now or chics again if we get any will be at safe age with no heat lamp lol to much work and he don’t want them in garage again lol any advice is welcomed thks

    1. We had chickens a few years ago, getting more in fall when its cooler. We have moved to AZ. Back when we had hens, we trimmed one wing so they couldn’t fly high. It works.

    1. I think a hatchery, preferably local, is your best bet. Numerous breed selection, for not a ton of $$$ and stress.

  28. We have four Easter Eggers that are different from any I’ve ever seen in pictures or otherwise. Two are almost totally black with white tips on their feathers. One has a white head which makes her look like a bald eagle. Any idea what their parentage might be?

  29. Got 2 EE pullets last spring, along with 2 each of barred rock and white leghorns. They free range from early morning till they retire themselves to hen house in the evening on our 10 ac property. They go back to lay eggs in their hen house throughout the day. Early summer we started missing one of the EE eggs for a month. Finally found her deep ground nest, under a row of overgrown yew bushes by garage, with 21 blue and 1 brown egg in it. Collected and all passed egg float test. She then returned to lay in hen house till fall came and even with searching everywhere we never found her eggs. Then we got our first snow that hung around for days and she returned to hen house to lay. I assume her eggs were outside somewhere and she was not going to sit in the snow…Lol! She was not broody as she was out foraging all day and sleeping in hen house.
    Wondering if this is normal for EE’s? Should we expect the same now that weather is warming up here in Va. ?

  30. One of my hens has every feature of a RIR but she lays a green egg. In the last 10 days she has lain 8 eggs. We love the eggs eggs as the yolk seems to be richer and the shells are very hard.

  31. I have 2 EE chickens and love them! They have been laying reg blue,green eggs but twice in last few weeks I have found a tiny version of their egg in the box….like 10% of the regular size!! Super cute, but why would this be happening?? Have not broken one open yet…perfectly formed, but tiny!!

  32. We bought 5 EEs and I love those silly girls. I also have one white which we are not sure what she is!!! Each has its own personality!!! Their coloring is incredible. Two are bigger(older) and just started laying eggs. One is soft green ant other a soft beige. I recommend EEs highly as they are friendly and I pick up and pet each daily.

  33. This is my second time having Easter Eggers. Our first was Daisy, she laid beautiful blue eggs. Daisy is now at the Agriculture Ranch at the local High School as we had to re-home her and her flock mates due to an irate Arab neighbor reporting our flock to animal control as we are not allowed to have chickens withing the city limits. That neighbor moved and so now we have two more Easter Eggers (Lois and Karen), along with a Buff Orp and an Australorp ( Sharron and Donna) . The darker of the two EE, Karen, lays an olive green egg, and her lighter plumage sister Lois lays a light blue egg. Both are very friendly, and lay at least 6 eggs per week, sometimes up to 8, which is extraordinary. We use Purina Layena and feed them treat in moderation. I would probably not raie the EE with Rhode Island reds, but they get along fine with Orps and Plymouth Rocks.

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