****** NEW AND EXCLUSIVE TO KEITHSORPS *****
CHOCOLATE SILVER LACED ORPINGTON BANTAM
The Chocolate Silver Laced Bantam Orpington is another colour created here at Keithsorps.
I chose to cross a Silver Laced cockerel over a Chocolate hen which gave me in the first generation of chicks, hens that were black and carrying one copy of the lacing gene but had inherited the silver from their father. None of the hens from the first cross were needed for the next step. But it produced cockerels that had inherited one copy of the lacing gene and although black in appearance were split for chocolate so therefore carrying the chocolate gene. They had also inherited the silver from their father but this was in an impure form so the appearance was of an off silver/ yellow colour.
I selected the best of these cockerels to use and crossed these back to Silver laced Orpington hens. When bringing together different genes not all of the chicks produced will inherit the correct combination of genes to create the desired effect so lots of the chicks produced from this cross were not used in the next stage. But from this cross it was a percentage of the pullets that would be Chocolate silver Laced. They would have inherited the chocolate base colour from their split Chocolate father, both copies of the lacing gene ( one from each parent ) and be pure for silver once again from both parents.
I started playing with breeding the Chocolate Silver Laced Orpington bantam a year before I started the same project in the large fowl and in the mix of breeding pens I tried many combinations to create some truly beautiful variations of the Chocolate and Silver.
During 2014 the diverse colour combinations of Chocolate and Silver produced created some truly sunning birds.
This pullet was produced and has a clear silver lacing around a Chocolate base colour, the reverse of the final lacing on the Chocolate Silver Laced Orpington bantam.
During 2015 I concentrated on isolating the lacing gene in my group of Chocolate Silver Orpington bantams. The hen pictured below is one of the hens I chose to use in my final push to create a clear lacing. By stepping back and using a Silver Laced Orpington bantam cockerel over the Chocolate Silver Laced bantam hens I was able to deepen the shade of Chocolate from a milky colour to the rich dark Chocolate shade that can be seen on the 2016 birds.
Now having finally bred a Chocolate Silver Laced Orpington bantam cockerel worthy of using in the breeding pen I bred him to both the Chocolate Silver Laced bantam pullets bred from the previous season and also Silver Laced Orpington bantam pullets. This has produced a stunning selection of pure bred Chocolate Silver Laced Orpington hens and cockerels and some new blood introduced from the Silver Laced to produce split Chocolate cockerels for future outcrosses.
THE SILVER IN THE CHOCOLATE SILVER LACED IS A SEX LINKED DOMINANT GENE
In poultry the sex of any chick is determined by the hen not the cockerel. The cockerel carries two Z chromosomes so he is ZZ. The hen carries one Z chromosome and one W chromosome so she is ZW.The cockerel must pass one of his Z chromosomes onto his offspring so any sex linked genes that are on that chromosome such as Silver, Bantam, Barring and Chocolate will be inherited. The hen can pass either her Z or her W chromosome on to her offspring. If she passes her Z chromosome on her chicks will be male and they will inherit all the sex linked genes that are on that Z chromosome but if she passes her W chromosome on, her chicks will be female and they will inherit none of the sex linked genes she is carrying. Genes that are sex linked can only be carried on the male chromosome.
THE CHOCOLATE IN THE CHOCOLATE SILVER LACED IS A SEX LINKED RECESSIVE GENE
So a cockerel needs two copies of the gene to be chocolate but the hen only needs one.
Chocolate x Chocolate = 100% Chocolate
Black split Chocolate cockeral x Black hen = 25% Black split cockerals/ 25% Black cockerals/ 25% Black hens/ 25% Chocolate hens
Chocolate cockeral x Black hen = 50% Black split cockerals / 50% Chocolate hens
Black cockeral x Chocolate hen = 50% Black split cockerals/ 50% Black hens
Black split Chocolate cockeral x Chocolate hen =25% Black split Chocolate cockerals/ 25% Chocolate cockerals/ 25% Black hens/ 25% Chocolate hens