The Hens Who Lay The Blue Eggs

Ameraucana and Cream Legbar hens lay the beautiful blue eggs for which our farm is named. (Just ignore that Barred Rock who stuck her head into the left photograph.)

When we are asked how our hens’ eggs turn blue, we like to say it is magic. But for those who may want a more scientific response, here is the answer. Several years ago, our family visited the Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History. It is an interesting and beautiful small museum that was founded with a collection of bird eggs as the Museum of Comparative Oology. Here is what we learned while we toured the Museum. “The pigment responsible for egg color is porphyrin derived from old blood cells broken down in the liver and transformed into bile pigments. Pigment is deposited first during the formation of the egg’s base color, and later as superficial markings in the final coating. Depending on the concentration of the bluish-green bile pigments throughout the shell, all eggs have a base color of either blue or white. High concentrations make blue eggs, while white eggs lack this pigment altogether.”