If you purchase a dozen eggs at the grocery store, you can expect them to be either all white or all brown. These eggs come from commercial egg producers raising huge flocks of one type of chicken - usually either White Leghorns (white egg layer) or Hy-Line Browns (brown egg layer). There is not much variety.
One difference you will immediately notice with our eggs is the color variety in each dozen. We raise many different breeds of chickens together in a mixed flock. Each breed lays a specific type of egg. The main egg color genetics present in chickens are white, brown, or blue eggs; cross breeding yields further variations such as olive or chocolate or speckled eggs. Regardless of shell color, eggs are the same internally.
Here are some of the breeds we raise on our farm:
The Rhode Island Red is an American breed of chicken developed in New England in the late 19th century by cross-breeding European and Asian breeds. They are a dual-purpose breed but are more suited to egg production than meat. They lay light brown eggs.
The Orpington is a European breed of chicken bred in England in the late 19th century. They are a large, dual-purpose, heritage breed. They have a calm and friendly temperament. In addition to black Orpingtons, we have several other color varieties including lavender and buff. Orpingtons lay cream colored eggs.
The Ameraucana, or Easter Egger, is derived from the Auracana chicken native to South America. Auracanas are tailless, with a muff of feathers under their chin, and have blue egg laying genes. The presence of muffs and tails can vary with Easter Eggers, and they show a variety of color patterns. But their characteristic trait is laying blue-tinted eggs.
The New Hampshire was developed around the same time as the Rhode Island Red but to be more of a meat than an egg breed. They lay brown eggs.
The Starlight Green Egger is an Easter Egger cross breed that lays light green eggs. In our experience, they are good layers and are very careful of predators while foraging.
Black Copper Marans chickens are a French breed originally from the town of Marans. This docile breed is great at foraging and lays a dark brown egg (one of the darkest color eggs in existence, and prized for its superior yolk quality).