What Color are Egg Yolks?

The egg on the left comes from a fodder eating female.

The egg on the left comes from a fodder eating female.

The answer that you come to growl at me for–it depends.

I have been busy going to meetings, contacting politicians (another post) and I taught a class yesterday in my living room. Yesterday’s class was about kombucha, keifers, meal worms and red wigglers. What do they have in common? I guess that you will just have to come to class to find that out.

One of my new students was able to share her experience about kombucha. Two of the students brought some of their essential oils to teach me about. Another student brought some pumpkin butter. It tastes like pumpkin pie filling! Yum! There was another student who was excited to share the fact that she bought her pressure canner, and is now one step closer to learning thow to can.  So we were snorting oils and tasting kombucha. It turned into quite a party!

Oh-but I was going to talk about eggs. So I heard some talk the other day. One lady was saying that chickens who are not in little cages are happier and because of that, they lay eggs with orange yolks. I needed to know the science behind it. Because I do not think that happy is a color, or produces orange yolks.

I have two chicken pens. One holds my 5 mature hens. The other pen holds my two smaller hens. I do not run them together, because the big ones pick on the smaller girls.  I know that they would eventually get used to each other. I just could not stand to have my litte Miss Prissy hurt. The big girls are free to run, they get sunshine, and eat bugs. I also feed them barley fodder, which is very green. The two smaller girls are free to run, they get sunshine, and they eat bugs. They are fed the same organic corn/soy free food that the big girls get. The only difference in their diet is that they do not get the fodder for now.

The big girls eggs have orange yolks. This is not as orange as they get though. When I have lots of greens from the garden to give them (in the next few months), the yolks will be a much deeper orange. By the way, they taste fabulous! The smaller girl’s eggs have a pale yellow yolk. They taste no different to me than the store bought eggs. I will conduct another experiment in a few months. I will give my little girls fodder and my big girls greens and show you the color difference.

In this case, happy does not have a color, or a taste. But greens do provide a color, a taste-and a chicken that produces healthier eggs. At least that is the case in my backyard.


About sharinglifesabundance

I am a backyard food producer. I grow 800 square feet of organic vegetables in the desert year round.
This entry was posted in Chickens, eggs, Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to What Color are Egg Yolks?

  1. Scott says:

    Hi, nice write up. Did you swap the fodder fed hens and did the eggs change?

    Thanks, Scott

    • Scott,
      Thank you for your question. When I changed the diet of the fodder fed hens to armloads of greens in the late fall-early summer, the eggs went an even deeper almost reddish orange. While I do believe that fodder is an incredible source of protein that adds the “greens to orange” factor, the armloads of a variety of greens gives even more. BTW, as soon as I started giving fodder to the “Yellow yolked” girls, their yolks turned orange as well.

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