Black Copper Marans

Marans Hen by ninjapoodles.
rooster idol continues by ninjapoodles.This bird has made a name for itself as one of the world breeds that produces chocolate brown eggs. It is highly prized by chefs, both for it's color and quality. However, it does not have a APA (American Poultry Association) Standard of Perfection, so there are many varieties, but the French Standard is your best bet. Unfortunately for us though there is no single strain that is the French Standard, so you might want to use the criteria below to find the one closest to it that you can. Though this may not be important to all of you, if this criteria is not fulfilled the chicken will probably not be pure Black Copper Maran, and not lay it's legendary dark eggs.
  • Appearance:
    • Male: One of the more complexly colored roosters, ideally this has: a  continuous shade of copper on the head, and hackle (back and sides of neck). Then there will be a slightly darker shade of copper on the saddle (swoop of back), and a mix of this darker shade with black feathers as you move towards the wings. On the lower part of the wings, and tail, there should be all black feathers, with a very prominent green sheen. Other parts as you move to the chest and under the wings will also be black, but without as much of a sheen, if any at all.
    • Female: A female has a nearly completely black body with copper on the head and neck areas, as above. It is good to have intense copper in these areas, but if any is found in the chest, or back, it is considered bad genetics, so you might want to stay away from mothers who may have these characteristics if you are going to breed your chickens. Also look out for white spots anywhere.
    • Face: Red
    • Comb: Large red single or rose comb
    • Earlobes: Red
    • Skin color: Yellow
    • Beak color: Yellow
    • Eyes: Red-Orange
    • Legs: Slate gray, with a pink underside. Preferably feathered, this is what is considered the French standard, but only on the leg and outer toe.
  • Weight: Rooster-8 Hen-6.5 Cockerel-7 Pullet-5.5*
  • Purpose: This chicken is dual-purpose.
  • Origin: Marans originated in France.
  • Common: Rare
  • Egg color: Chocolate Brown. This color is achieved by a coating that is applied in the last part of the laying process, that since it is only on the surface, you can rub it off with a little work.
  • Egg size: Large to X-Large
  • Eggs a week/year: 3-4 eggs a week 150-180 a year, but of it's legendary eggs.
  • Broody: Occasionally*
  • Confinement: They generally take confinement well.
  • Compatibility: They typically get along well with others.
  • Hardy: They are good with cold because they were initially bred in a damp environment.
  • Bantam: Yes*
  • Personality: Not as vocal as other chickens, generally they are active, but may become lazy if not given the proper space.
  • Available from: In this chickens case it is bad to buy from hatcheries because they will not reach all of the standards, and will not lay dark eggs. However below I have listed severaly popular lines of this chicken, and sellers.*
Well known to be amazing egg-layers, they are also visually pleasing. Definitely a good addition to the backyard chicken owner's flock.

Photo courtesy of Flickr user: ninjapoodles

Information courtesy of:
*For more information on terms above see Key to Chicken Entries


  1. Did you get them from different places? And was at least one from a hatchery?

    1. Same place and it was a breeder. I got them with a bunch of others as 2 1/2 week old appears this breeder is no where to be found...web site no longer exists.

  2. I just bought a 7 month old trio of BCM and 15 chicks that are 9 weeks old. They are the right colors and have the feathers den their legs! The guy had them as a show chicken. He sold them to make room for dove. He sold them to me for cheap. I am waiting on my first eggs! I am so excited.

  3. i just got 8 black copper marans . the actual french style. the color of the eggs are like a chocolate going to start breeding them as i got 6 hens 2 roosters. time to make $$$

  4. Love my Black Copper Marans chicks they are so cute with their featherly legs..

  5. I am very happy with my BCM's. I have had a lot of eggs this spring and have sold every chick hatched and still have people on the waiting list. Some people do not care how far they have to drive to buy these wonderful chicks. Now two of my hens are brooding. These hens are from last year's chicks. When the brooding hens hatch their eggs I am keeping them to increase my flock. I plan to free range them in the next couple of weeks. I just need to rid myself of the other free range roosters so I can keep the breed pure.

  6. Good article. BTW...Black Copper Marans never have rose combs. They have single combs or they are not proper BCM's.

  7. I have bev davis black copper marans good lookin birds

  8. These turned out so cool!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! The color is great! copper still

  9. If you breed BCM hen to BCM rooster will you still get BCM chick's that are true to color ect.
    I was told that they won't. I know this is a dumb question but need to know before I hatch and sale the chick's.

  10. You can only get BCM chicks by breeding a BCM roo to a BCM hen. What were they telling you to breed?

  11. I purchased some little peddlers, they are 18 wks old, 6 pullets and 3 roosters and I have noticed specks of white feathers on one of them. The breeder of these Birds only deals with marans. What about the white specks on his chest, should I cull. Thanks

    1. Once the bird molts into adult feathers these white feathers will go away. If they do not, cull the ones with the white feathers as much as possible. LP Marans are excellent birds, worth keeping and breeding.

    2. Stay away from LP/ Little Peddler unless you want to be totally ripped off. I have been round and round with Brenda Little until I'm just sick! I paid an outrageous $210 for a dozen "Fertile Hatching Eggs". She put NO PACKAGING on the top or between the eggs which were only rolled in paper. Then she sent them out USPS and only wrote "fragile" on the box. They arrived broken, cracked, dented, and a scrambled mess. She is refusing now to resend or refund my money. She keeps changing her story. I disputed with PayPal because she wouldn't respond to my emails. She finally responded ONLY AFTER I disputed with PayPal and sent her a copy. Then she said she would send replacement eggs. Then she wrote 10 days later that she wouldn't send eggs because of the PP dispute and acted like a victim, like she never knew about it even though it was already discussed in our emails. Then she wrote she wouldn't send replacement because the PP dispute was closed (I never received a refund). Then she wrote that I would have to close the dispute or she wouldn't send eggs. Then she wrote: "here's proof that PP has taken the money out of my account" and sent me proof of the PP DEPOSIT to her, not a withdraw. She has been nothing but lies, deception, fraud. She wrote that she has sent PayPal ALL the emails. I suspect she has selected a few to send to make her look good. Instead of being honest about it, I believe she is trying to manipulate PP into her favor so she can take my money and run. Like she clearly states on her site, she really doesn't want others to have her eggs (her excuse for charging so much). I had my heart set on raising Marans. After going through the ringer with Brenda Little's greed and fraud, I don't want to have anything to do with the whole lot of chicken breeders! I'll just continue to raise my variety for food egg sale. If you are looking for an HONEST breeder STAY AWAY FROM LP!

  12. I bought my black copper marans from Meyer hatchery. The rooster looks like the pics of marans but has ear tufts like my Eastereggers? Doesn't seem right to me. I've raised him since spring and want yo raise pure black copper marans. I fear I've wasted my time and money? My Maran hens look perfect with copper on their heads and slighly feathered legs.He has no feathers on his legs. Can anyone help?

    1. Not Black copper. Eat it

  13. If you buy from a commercial hatchery then you get what you pay for . Be very picky who you buy from .

  14. I purchased 5 BCM's from a woman locally and I am pretty sure that I have one roo but I have another that has developed a small red comb and wattles but absolutely NO tail. He/she is otherwise beautiful albeit without a copper neck, there is some copper coloring but the other roo is true copper on head and neck. Is this common? Do they sometimes develop the tail later. My coppers are 2.5 months old now. Thanks for any input.

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  16. I found this beautiful black chicken on the WEB for my painting motif. May I get permission to use this picture for motif? I am going to draw chicken by water color painting.


  17. I have hatched 2 black copper maran this year I have a rooster and a hen. the hen is 15 weeks so not far from laying, the rooster is 24 weeks I am keeping the first dozen eggs for hatching, I will gladly supply fetile eggs if people want them, if you would like some please email me and I will let you know when I have some.