The Azur today
The Azur is bred for its unique blue egg shell color, good shell strength and excellent silver feather cover. The Azur is a robust and friendly bird, ideal for small scale and backyard egg producers, producing attractive and good quality eggs. Under the direction of Hendrix Genetics Layers, the current Azur laying hens have the advantage of having 50% of the genes coming from White Leghorns. Making her highly productive, with excellent feed conversion, egg quality and livability. Selection parameters focus on the importance of uniformity of the blue egg shell color, the eggshell breaking strength and the feather cover during the whole egg laying cycle.
In recent years, the selection program of the Azur has been strengthened to obtain an excellent adaptation of the Azur blue hens to their environment. Hendrix Genetics continues to develop and conserve the original strain on its R&D farms. These uniquely blue egg colored laying hens have the following characteristics:
- Beautiful turquoise blue eggs
- An elegant and robust hen
- Good lasting silver white feather cover (occasional black spots)
The history of the Azur
The origins of the Azure strain can be traced to Chile, where blue egg layers were first observed by a Spanish poultry farmer, Salvador Castelló, in 1914. Castelló believed he had discovered a new species, which he presented at the first World Poultry Congress in The Hague in 1921. At the time, these blue-egg layers were thought to be unique. Following the sinking of a Chilean ship off the Hebrides Islands near Scotland, the modern Azur layer was rescued and selected by George Malcolm in Scotland in the 1930s.