Ducks can lay beautiful egg colors! Here is an overview of duck egg color, with a chart included to give you an idea of what to expect from 14 different breeds of ducks. There is also an overview of how genetics determine egg color and how you can breed ducks for specific egg colors as well. Read more here…
Duck Egg Color You’ll Definitely Want to Have!
Duck Eggs and Their Interesting Facts:
If you are interested, this link: duck egg facts, will answer all your questions. Do duck eggs taste the same as chicken eggs? Are duck eggs better for you than a chicken egg? After reading this article about duck egg color, come back to the link above and find out more about these eggs and 10 tips on how to sell them efficiently.
What is the color of a duck egg? And they blue or green?
Originally, of course, all ducks were wild.
And wild ducks laid eggs that would blend into their surroundings. This disguise helped, and still does help, prevent predators from finding the eggs.
Dark caves and holes: White Shells
Riparian areas: Green Tint
Treetop canopies: Blue
Barren rocks: Speckled
But now, unlike chickens, where Marans lay chocolate eggs, and leghorns lay white eggs and Americanas lay blue eggs, the duck egg follows its own set of rules when it comes to its egg color.
You can find a lot of articles here on A Life of Heritage that will teach you a lot about poultry and be sure to check out DUCK DOUGH: Profitable Poultry Binder–It’s FULL of to-do lists, checklists, record keeping sheets, and resource pages that will keep your flock healthy and YOU organized!
In the 1800s, when ducks became “cool” to raise and breed, white was also “cool”. So ducks that laid white eggs, were kept and bred. And because the wild birds laid colored eggs, it became a “badge of purity” for domestic ducks to lay white eggs. It was their way of telling the difference between domestic and wild ducks.
Duck Egg Color Genetics (Somewhat) Demystified
Genetics are so tricky.
The long and short of it is this:
Green shells (G): with biliverdin, are DOMINANT
White shells (W): without biliverdin, are recessive
If the hen has a strong (G) gene, this gene will most likely pass on but not always.
Many ducks will have both the (G) and (W) genes.
This can be expressed like this:
(Gg): Two green genes
(Gw): Dominant green gene over recessive white
(Ww): two white genes
And because of all the variables, there is no way to guarantee duck egg color.
If you have the desire, time, and energy, you can breed your ducks and isolate desired egg colors.
This would look something like the following. For more blue egg layers:
Choose ducks with a strong (G) gene. Like Metzer’s Black or Chocolate Runners.
Keep hens that lay blue eggs.
Breed to drakes that hatched from blue eggs.
Raise the ducklings and keep those who lay blue eggs when they start laying.
And breed them to drakes that hatch from blue eggs.
This will eventually dilute the (W) gene. But don’t forget! That (W) gene can pop up at any moment, just to keep you on your toes!
What Color are Runner Duck Eggs?
Runner ducks lay an egg color that is somewhere between white and blue-green.
The Black and Chocolate Runners will usually have a “sooty” outer shell at the beginning of their laying season. But as the season progresses, the color can end up being as white as any other Runner.
The Cayuga and Black East Indian have a tendency to lay a “blackish” colored egg in the earlier days of their laying season.
Rouen Duck Egg Color
Rouens lay an egg that is slightly off-white.
Pekin Duck Egg Color
Pekins also lay a white egg.
You can read more about ducks breeds here, in fact, there are 14 breeds that could be a great match for your flock! It will give you a good overview of the duck’s characteristics and the color of the egg they lay.
Saturday 13th of March 2021
What colour would you expect Abacot Ranger eggs to be?
Friday 25th of October 2019
Thanks for this info! I have about 4 gold phase Welsh Harlequin ducks that lay a pretty green egg, and I wondered why.
Thursday 2nd of May 2019
Thanks for the information and the infographic! I have Rouens and two of my hens lay beautiful green eggs; so pretty!
Thursday 2nd of May 2019
Oh! That's wonderful! And you are welcome!
Monday 11th of June 2018
Welsh Harlequin. Not Welch. I’m sure this is a typo. Good information.
Tuesday 12th of June 2018
Oh yes, it was! And of course, it was on the infographic! lol, And do you know how many times I type "next" instead of "nest"?? Thanks for pointing it out, I'll get that changed :)