I raised Blue Laced Red Wyandottes for about 10 years and they are still one of my favorite chickens.
I would still have them, but precious coop space being what it is…I’m trying to concentrate on APA recognized breeds, and unfortunately, the Blue Laced Red color is not APA recognized.
I was prompted to write this post because I keep seeing a photograph circulating around social media of a Blue Laced Red Wyandotte chicken. The photo has been photoshopped to intensify the colors, (which makes it look a bit bizarre) but I can tell by the comments that many people are unfamiliar with this color of Wyandotte. (photoshopped or not)
Wyandottes are an all-around excellent breed. They are hearty, friendly chickens. They make great mothers and are consistent layers. They lay a large-extra large tan/peach egg. They are a plump, nicely shaped bird with dense plumage and it does FABULOUS in cold climates. It also has a rose comb which is less prone to frostbite.
Their only drawback is that they are somewhat slow to mature, slow to feather out and late layers. Averaging 8+ months for their first egg to come.
The Wyandotte was developed in America in the 1870s and originally named the American Sebright. The creation of this breed can be credited to 4 people: H. M. Doubleday, John Ray, L. Whittaker, and Fred Houdlette. It has roots in the Brahma, Hamburg, and Cochin breeds.
It was developed as a dual-purpose breed that could lay well. The original color was the Silver Laced.
The APA-accepted colors of Wyandotte for Large Fowl (non-Bantam size) as of 2017:
- Silver Laced
- Gold Laced
- Silver Penciled
The Blue Laced Red Feathers
The blue laced red feathers of the BLRW are something of a rarity among chicken breeds and colors.
There is a lot of evidence that the BL color was developed in the United States then made popular in Germany with a recent recurrence among backyard keepers in the States.
The genetics behind this color pattern can also get a bit confusing to understand because the color pattern doesn’t breed true. Meaning that, when you breed a Blue Laced rooster with a Blue Laced hen, not all the chicks will have the blue laced coloring.
Blue Laced Red Wyandottes have genetic coding to produce three different color offspring.
- The Blue: Which is more of a charcoal grey color.
- The Splash: The blue feathers are replaced by a white/pale grey.
- The Black: These birds have red feathers with black lacing. They look similar to a Gold Laced Wyandotte but the red in the feathers should be rich mahogany. (Think Rhode Island Red.)
Breeding and Offspring Coloration
Blue X Blue = 50% Blue, 25% Black , 25% Splash
Blue X Splash = 50% Blue , 50% Splash
Blue X Black = 50% Blue, 50% Splash X Black = 100% Blue
Black X Black = 100% Black
Splash X Splash = 100% Splash
This is based on 100 chicks
Breeding for a specific color can get a bit tricky. If you have customers who want chicks or hatching eggs, you may need to explain how the genetics work so they’re not confused when their chickens don’t all look the same.
But anyone who wants a beautiful chicken to add to their flock, and wants to experiment with chicken genetics, the Blue Laced Red Wyandotte is a perfect choice.