Easter Egger chickens are known for their fun and varied egg colors. Unlike most chicken breeds that lay eggs of a predictable color, Easter Eggers can lay eggs in shades of blue, green, pink, and more. Their egg color is a genetic surprise! Read on to learn all about the rainbow of egg colors you can expect from these colorful backyard chickens.
Easter Eggers, sometimes known as Ameraucanas, are a hybrid breed of chicken that does not conform to any breed standard but is known for laying colorful eggs in shades of blue, green, pink, and more. They were created by crossbreeding Araucanas, Ameraucanas, and other blue egg laying breeds.
While purebred Araucana and Ameraucana hens lay blue or green eggs, Easter Eggers can lay a rainbow of egg colors. This is because the Easter Egger breed includes many mixed breed chickens. Without a breed standard for feather color or egg color, each individual Easter Egger hen may lay different colored eggs.
The fun surprise of Easter Egger egg colors is part of their appeal to backyard chicken keepers. However, if you’re wondering exactly what colors Easter Eggers can lay, read on! Here’s a guide to the wide variety of Easter Egger egg shades and what causes their color variation.
What Causes Easter Egger Egg Color Variety?
Unlike standardized chicken breeds, Easter Eggers are a cross breed without guidelines for egg color. But most Easter Eggers carry a blue egg laying gene that enables them to lay colorful eggs rather than the usual brown or white.
This blue egg gene causes their eggshells to have a blue or green base color. Other genes then add additional pigmentation in shades of brown, pink, or cream. The combination results in an array of egg colors.
Some common shades of Easter Egger eggs include:
- Pale blue or green
- Bright blue or green
- Blue or green with speckles
- Olive green
- Pale pink
The specific colors an Easter Egger will lay are genetically determined but can’t be predicted just by looking at the hen. Each individual will lay a unique color and shade. Over their lifetime, some Easter Eggers have quite a lot of variety in their egg colors!
Common Easter Egger Egg Colors
Here is more detail on some of the most common Easter Egger egg colors:
Blue Easter Egger Eggs
Pure blue is one of the most common Easter Egger egg shades. It ranges from a pale robin’s egg blue to a bright, deep blue.
Blue eggs come from the blue egg gene that most Easter Eggers carry. The blue pigment biliverdin is deposited on the eggshell as it develops in the hen’s oviduct. More pigment results in a brighter blue color.
Green Easter Egger Eggs
Green is another classic Easter Egger egg color. Like blue eggs, green egg color comes from the blue egg laying gene.
Green egg color ranges from a light sage green to a bold, grassy green. The shades result from different concentrations of biliverdin. Increased biliverdin on top of the blue base results in green egg color.
Pink Easter Egger Eggs
Pretty pink egg color is possible in Easter Eggers. Pink eggs occur when a gene for brown egg color is expressed on top of the blue egg gene.
The brown pigment protoporphyrin is layered on the blue base color, muting it to a rosy pink shade. Pink Easter Egger eggs are often a very pale, blushed pink color.
Lavender Easter Egger Eggs
Lavender or light purple Easter Egger eggs are the result of a small amount of brown pigment on a blue egg base. Just a touch of brown protoporphyrin causes a light lilac egg color.
Lavender eggs are an uncommon shade but a delightful Easter Egger egg color when they occur. The pale purple can appear almost periwinkle on some eggs.
Olive Easter Egger Eggs
Olive or sage green egg color is another variation of blue/green Easter Egger eggs. More brown pigment is overlaid on the blue base to create an olive green shade.
The brown and blue pigments together make an earthy, muted olive green color. Olive Easter Egger eggs are less common than pure blue or green eggs.
Brown Easter Egger Eggs
While most Easter Eggers carry the blue egg gene, some may express a gene for brown egg color instead. Easter Eggers with the brown shell gene will lay chocolate brown eggs rather than colorful eggs.
Brown eggs indicate a Easter Egger does not have any blue egg laying genetics. But they are still considered Easter Eggers despite their lack of color.
Speckled Easter Egger Eggs
Some Easter Eggers may lay eggs covered in speckles or freckles! This speckling occurs when small flecks of pigment are deposited unevenly instead of evenly dispersed.
Speckling can appear on blue, green, pink, or brown Easter Egger eggs. The speckles are typically a darker shade than the base color. They add unique flair to each speckled egg.
Do Easter Eggers Lay Different Colors as they Age?
Easter Eggers can go through phases of laying different egg colors as they mature. Often, younger Easter Eggers will lay paler, more subtle colors. As they grow older, bolder and darker egg shades emerge.
For example, a pullet may first lay very pale blue eggs. After a few months, her eggs could intensify to a bright robin’s egg blue. Darker blue, green, and speckled varieties may come even later.
Diet can also impact an Easter Egger’s egg color over time. Access to greens and vegetables tends to result in richer egg color. As seasons change and diet changes, so may egg color.
It’s fun to collect a basket of Easter Egger eggs and see all the variations!
Do All Easter Eggers Lay Colored Eggs?
While colored eggs are their claim to fame, not every Easter Egger actually lays colored eggs. Since they are a cross breed, some may inherit dominant genes for white or brown eggs from their parent breeds instead of blue egg genes.
An Easter Egger hen that lays brown eggs likely had parents that lacked the blue egg gene entirely. But she is still considered an Easter Egger based on breed ancestry, even if her eggs aren’t colorful.
Easter Eggers with white eggs may carry the hidden blue egg gene. But they also carry a dominant white egg gene that overrides egg color expression.
Overall, at least 90% of Easter Eggers will lay blue, green, or other colored eggs. But white or brown egg layers still occur occasionally.
Do Easter Eggers’ Earlobes Indicate Egg Color?
Chicken earlobe color is linked to egg color in some breeds. However, in Easter Eggers, earlobe color is not a reliable predictor.
Easter Eggers may have red earlobes or white earlobes, no matter their egg color. The mixed breed background of Easter Eggers breaks the link between lobe color and shell color that exists in heritage breeds.
While red lobes often indicate brown egg layers and white lobes often indicate blue layers, this is not consistent in Easter Eggers. You’ll have to wait for first lay to know what color eggs your Easter Egger pullet will produce!
Sample Easter Egger Egg Color Data
Here is some sample data on Easter Egger egg colors collected from a backyard flock:
|Easter Egger Hen||Age at First Lay||Egg Color|
|Sunny||6 months||Pale green with brown speckles|
|Lucy||5 months||Robin’s egg blue|
|Charlotte||7 months||Olive green|
|Ruby||6 months||Light pink|
|Autumn||6 months||Dark green|
|Piper||5 months||Pale blue|
|Willow||6 months||Dark blue with white speckles|
This sample shows the variety of egg colors from different hens, even those that start laying around the same age. It also demonstrates how no two Easter Eggers lay the same shade!
How to Guess Your Easter Egger’s Egg Color
While you can’t know exactly what color eggs an Easter Egger will lay until they start laying, you can make guesses based on their ancestry.
If your Easter Egger comes from stock that are mostly blue egg layers like Ameraucanas and Araucanas, blue or green eggs are very likely. You can expect light blue, dark blue, green, or speckled blue eggs if the parental lines are strong blue egg layers.
Easter Eggers whose background includes Marans, Welsummers, or other brown egg breeds have better chances of laying brown or pink eggs. But they may still lay colorful eggs depending on if a blue egg layer was also used when breeding.
Ultimately each Easter Egger is an individual with unique genetics for egg color. Even two sibling hens from the same parents can lay different egg colors. It’s a colorful surprise waiting to be unwrapped when your pullet starts laying!
Increasing Odds of Colorful Easter Egger Eggs
If you’re hoping for the most colorful basket of Easter Egger eggs possible, choose chicks from parents that are known for laying vibrant blue or green eggs. Avoid lines containing any white egg layers.
Raising your Easter Eggers with optimal nutrition supports brilliant egg color too. Feed a diet rich in yellow/orange vegetables like squash and greens like kale or grass. Supplement their feed with oyster shell for extra calcium. Proper care and diet will help your Easter Eggers reach their full colorful potential.
And be patient waiting for those first eggs! It can take 4-7 months for an Easter Egger pullet to start laying. But the wait will be rewarded with a rainbow of colorful eggs.
Easter Eggers offer backyard chicken keepers a fun surprise with their rainbow array of possible egg colors. From pale blue to speckled pink and every shade in between, Easter Eggers lay a variety of hues thanks to their unique genetic mix. While you can make educated guesses based on breed background, you’ll have to wait for those first eggs from each hen to know exactly what color she’ll lay. The colorful variety makes collecting Easter Egger eggs a daily adventure!