The Variation of Animals and Plants Under Domestication, Vol. I.

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Excerpt: ... the eggs of each can almost always be recognised. The eggs of differently sized breeds naturally differ much in size; but, apparently, not always in strict relation to the size of the hen: thus the Malay is a larger bird than the Spanish, but generally she produces not such large eggs; white Bantams are said to lay smaller eggs than other Bantams;396 white Cochins, on the other hand, as I hear from Mr. Tegetmeier, certainly lay larger eggs than buff Cochins. The eggs, however, of the different breeds vary considerably in character; for instance, Mr. Ballance states397 that his Malay "pullets of last year laid eggs equal in size to those of any duck, and other Malay hens, two or three years old, laid eggs very little larger than a good-sized Bantam's egg. Some were as white as a Spanish hen's egg, and others varied from a light cream-colour to a deep rich buff, or even to a brown." The shape also varies, the two ends being much more equally rounded in Cochins than in Games or Polish. Spanish fowls lay smoother eggs than Cochins, of which the eggs are generally granulated. The shell in this latter breed, and more especially in Malays, is apt to be thicker than in Games or Spanish; but the Minorcas, a sub-breed of Spanish, are said to lay harder eggs than true Spanish.398 The colour differs considerably,