Hatching This Week: Marans

By Nienetwiler (Own work) [CC-BY-2.5-ch (], via Wikimedia Commons

A Silver Marans Rooster

Marans are a traditional French breed of which they are very proud.  The ideal Marans egg is a very dark brown.  The extra coatings of brown pigment applied to the outside of the egg shell by the hen block up some of the pores in the egg shell and decrease the chance of contamination.  Although Marans are not prolific layers at only about 150 eggs per year, they are valued for their dark egg color as well as high quality meat.  There is an official Marans egg color chart offered for sale by their breed club that allows breeders to compare their eggs to the ideal color.

Marans should have feathered shanks.  While feathered legs may seem to be a liability in muddy environments, they were developed in a swampy area of France and cope with a wet environment quite well.  A complete history of the Marans breed, as well as standards, pictures, and other information, is available on the Marans of America Club website.  Generally, Marans have white shanks and red or orange eyes.  There are 11 generally accepted colors.  The Black Copper Marans are known to generally have the best egg color, especially in the U.S.

By Marans-Club de France ( [GFDL ( or CC-BY-SA-3.0-2.5-2.0-1.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

An ideal Marans egg

When you are talking about Marans in the U.S., you hear a lot about different lines. Most often touted is the “Bev Davis” line.  Bev Davis is an expert breeder who has done a lot to refine Marans in America.  She has excellent breeding tips and information on her website.

I hope to be hatching Blue Birchen Marans later this week.  Again, there are only two of six eggs developing, and I hope to get at least one pullet!  These Marans have much lighter brown eggs and, following blue/black/splash genetics, may not all hatch truly blue – it would depend on what combination of these colors were in the breeding pen.  I expect 50% to be blue.  I couldn’t find any freely licensed pictures, but you can see a cockerel and their eggs here.  There is also a picture on the Feathersite article if you scroll down a ways.  This is a blue version of the Birchen Marans.

Marans links:

10 thoughts on “Hatching This Week: Marans

    • I wish I could say it is my own, but the image is from Wikimedia Commons, freely licensed images. I chose the image to illustrate the dark, beautiful color of the Marans eggs, which I am sure you are quite expert about! Please feel free to let me know any information you think I should add or good Marans links to refer other to. Thanks for visiting!

  1. Pingback: Which Rooster? « Scratch Cradle

  2. Excellent source of information! I enjoyed the visit and will be back for more. 🙂 I breed and exhibit several varieties of Marans and although the breed is a trial at times, I very much like them and especially their dark brown eggs.
    Thank you,

    • Thank you very much, Rodney! Please feel free to share any information or links about the Marans breed here. I would love to learn more about them! Beautiful birds and beautiful eggs.

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