BackYard Chickens › Breeds & Supplies › Chicken Breeds › Jersey Giant

Jersey Giant


Pros: Docile, beautiful, very large

Cons: slower growth and slightly poorer egg production

We had Black Jersey Giants. One became our flock rooster for a couple of years. He was huge and beautiful, with solid black eyes, iridescent plumage, and a very upright "proper" stance. We could pick him up and carry him around, and he wouldn't fuss, yet we have had him jump on a hawk that had one of his hens pinned down. Harvey was our favorite chicken ever, and was only let go because so many in the flock were his offspring. Harvey moved to a nearby farm where he is still going strong, despite being 5 years old!


Very large birds that grow a bit more slowly than the other heavy fowl. Extremely docile. Hens did go broody for us some, and laid reasonably well year round. Eggs were usually large and x-lrge. They were quiet birds for the most part, and not aggressive with other members in the flock. Easy to make these into pets. They faired well in free range life, foraging well and not being plagued with any health issues. Seemed undisturbed by heat and cold. The docile temperament is evident even in crossbred offspring.


Crossbred chicks from Jersey Giant crosses have grown very fast and reached processing weights much faster than did the purebred. Carcass of the purebred is acceptable, and they picked surprisingly clean for a black-feathered breed.


A good homestead bird, but not a steadfast producer like the plymouth rock or rhode island red.


Pros: Stunning beauty, very hardy, size tends to deter predation

Cons: Those jokers can eat!!

Recently the local dogs have made a few raids on my flock. They never mess with my jersy giant roosters, consequently the hens of smaller breeds(hamburgs and leghorns) who were part of their harems have not been effected, the rest fell victim. Though not a fool proof defense in my experience a flock with a big twelve pounder marshaling the girls is less vulnerable than one without one.


Pros: Friendly, Calm, Protective, Beautiful

Cons: Aggressive to birds they see as threats, Slow to mature

We purchased our Black Jersey Giant rooster on a whim when our other Speckled Sussex eggs failed to hatch. He has been a valuable member to our flock, always keeping an eye out for anything he perceives as a threat. He is quite gentle with the hens, even when he is seeking their "affections". While our other roosters occasionally fight, he for the most part keeps out of it, however, when I purchased a few roosters for butchering, he immediately placed himself between the flock and the new roosters, especially the new trouble makers. Now that the butchering roosters are gone, he is back to his old docile self.
My one issue is that there are plenty of hens, however he sometimes takes a fancy to our Lady Duck :S

I will defiantly be adding a few more Jersey Giants to our flock!


Pros: large, friendly, decent egg layers

Cons: maybe large for eggs alone?

    Since we live in an area frequented by predators I researched breeds before settling on Jersey Giants. We got our first ones as half grown juveniles and despite that they became very tame and friendly. The laid large brown to pinkish brown eggs.  They were large enough that hawks left them alone, but unfortunately  we had to stay one jump ahead of the foxes (One of the reasons our coop and runs now look like Fort Knox.)

    The only negative thing I can say, and it really isn't a negative is that their feed to egg ratio probably isn't as good as that of some of the smaller hens and for meat they don't grow as quickly as the meat crosses, but if you can free range your birds, you won't find a better breed.

    I no longer have pure JG's anymore, but I do have some of the grandchildren that are 1/2 to 3/4 JG, and they are still some of my favorites.  They aren't quite as big, but they are excellent layers.  I wouldn't mind having more JG's sometime.


Pros: Protect flock, good forager, gorws quickly.

Cons: Loud, bossy, sometimes mean

I have a 6 week old Jersey Giant named Nausicaa. Whenever i come to check on the flock she is always the first to greet me. I walked in one day to find my pet cat hissing at my Jersey with his tail between his legs, Nausicaa always stands up the smaller in the flock. i would rate this bird 5 stars, but nothing is perfect. :)


Jersey Giants are very affectionate!! They merge well with other chickens!

They are very large chickens and can eat a lot. But on the plus side these chickens are good foragers!

They have beautiful peacock color plumage when reflected in the sun!!

I recommend this breed!!


Pros: Sweet, large eggs, full bodied

Cons: only laid every other day

Loved them! They were so sweet and always ran out of the woods to greet me. They were big enough that the dogs left them alone too.


Pros: Large, fluffy, good personality, hardy

Cons: Slow growth

I bought a Jersey giant pullet at a sale..Brought her home and fell in love with her.,. yes her breed grows slowly then other breeds, but I didnt mind, This breed is huge, They lay a big brown egg and hardy during winter. they get along with any breed,


Pros: Hardy, large, docile, friendly, lays well, broody

I have one Black Jersey Giant. She is a wonderful bird, very friendly, calm, and a great layer. Gorgeous black feathers with a green tint. Can't think of one bad thing to say! 


Our Jersey was typical of the breed, a big girl and the largest in the flock.  That said she was not a bully, very even tempered.   She enjoyed being held and never pecked anybody.  She would place herself between two other squawking chickens as the peacemaker.  If I have a complaint it is that she ate more than she laid.  This girl could pack the feed away.  Decent size eggs, 3-4 week.

Our girl came to an unfortunate end when she went inside out, that was a bad, sad day.

Jersey Giant

The Jersey Giant is the largest chicken variety (roosters average 13 lbs., hens average 11 lbs.). This breed was originally called the Jersey Black Giant, being named after its developers, the Black Brothers, in the 1870s in New Jersey. The breeds used in development of the Jersey Giant were Black Javas, Black Langshans, and Dark Brahmas. These birds are rugged, and are slow growers, putting on their frames the first year and then filling out in the second. Because they are a slow-growing variety, they have lost some of their popularity. This breed is known to be very friendly and get on well with other varieties of birds and pets. Australorps are often confused with Jersey Giants, and you can tell the difference by their legs. Jersey Giants’ legs are black, the bottoms of their feet being yellow. Australorps’ legs are black, the bottoms being pinkish-white.

Breed PurposeDual Purpose
Climate ToleranceCold
Egg ProductivityMedium
Egg SizeLarge
Egg ColorLight Brown
Breed TemperamentFriendly,Easily handled,Calm,Docile
Breed Colors/VarietiesBlack, White, Blue, Splash
Breed SizeLarge Fowl
APA/ABA ClassAmerican
Model Name/TypeMPNEAN/UPC

Chicken Breed Info:

Breed Purpose: Dual Purpose
Comb: Single
Broodiness: Seldom
Climate Tolerance: Cold

General Egg Info:

Egg Productivity: Medium
Egg Size: Large
Egg Color: Light Brown

Breed Temperament:

Friendly,Easily handled,Calm,Docile

Breed Colors / Varieties:

Black, White, Blue, Splash

Breed Details:

This breed is a pleasure to have around the farm. They are gorgeous, quite large (roosters attain an average weight of 13 lbs.), the roosters have a very pretty crow, and they have very good egg production.


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