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Do bantams lay green eggs?

Bantam chickens are a smaller breed of chicken that originated in Southeast Asia. They are popular as pets and for small backyard flocks due to their compact size. One of the most frequently asked questions about bantams is what color eggs they lay. Unlike their full-sized counterparts, bantams can lay eggs in a wide variety of colors beyond just brown and white.

Typical bantam egg colors

The most common egg colors for bantam chickens are:

  • White
  • Light brown
  • Dark brown
  • Cream
  • Light blue
  • Dark blue
  • Olive green
  • Pink

While white and brown eggs are the most common, many people are delighted to find their bantams laying eggs in shades of blue, green, or pink. The exact color depends on the breed.

What causes different egg colors?

The shell color comes from pigments deposited on the shell as the egg passes through the oviduct. Different breeds deposit different pigments:

  • Brown pigment (protoporphyrin) – brown eggs
  • White pigment (calcium carbonate) – white eggs
  • Blue-green pigment (ochem) – blue and green eggs
  • Pink pigment (astaxanthin) – pink eggs

Some breeds, like Ameraucanas, have the genetic ability to deposit multiple pigments and can lay a variety of colored eggs in a clutch.

Breeds that lay green eggs

Here are some common bantam breeds that lay green or olive-colored eggs:

Breed Egg Color
Easter Eggers Blue, green, pink, brown
Araucanas Blue, green
Favaucanas Green, blue, pink

As you can see, many green egg layers are hybrid breeds that get their color genetics from parent stock like Ameraucanas and Araucanas. Purebred Araucana bantams are somewhat rare, but make delightful green egg layers.

Factors that affect egg color

It’s important to note that even in green egg laying breeds, the eggshell color can vary based on several factors:

  • Age of the hen – Pullet eggs tend to be lighter in color
  • Season – Eggs tend to fade in color over the summer
  • Diet – Greener yolks correspond to greener shells

So you may see lighter green or even blue eggs towards the beginning of lay or during heat waves. Offering greens and antioxidants can help encourage the richest shell colors.

Are colored eggs still edible?

The good news is that egg color has no effect on egg quality or taste. Green, blue, and brown eggs all have the same nutritional values. The only difference is cosmetic – the pigments don’t penetrate deep into the shell.

So green eggs are just as delicious and nutritious as brown eggs! The unique colors just make your morning egg hunt that much more interesting.

Incubating colored eggs

When incubating bantam eggs, it’s best to incubate each color separately. During candling, it can be difficult to see the embryo in heavily pigmented green or blue shells. Keeping a batch of light and dark eggs makes it easier to monitor development.

Otherwise, colored eggs hatch just fine under standard incubation conditions. The baby chicks will display their breed’s distinctive feather patterns that match those fun egg colors!


While green chicken eggs may seem exotic, they are perfectly natural for breeds like Easter Eggers, Araucanas, and Favaucanas. The green color comes from oochem pigments in the shell. Diet, age, and other factors can cause the depth of color to vary.

Colored eggs are equally nutritious and delicious compared to white or brown eggs. But they sure do brighten up a carton from the store or a basket of eggs from your home flock!