Pros: usually easy to catch and pick up; tolerant of children; sex linked so you don't have to fret over whether she's a he

Cons: can be mean to younger chickens, if you introduce a new flock of chicks

I have a small flock, and I purchase my chickens from in small batches. I usually fret over whether or not my chicks are male or female, but with Red Stars, you do not have to worry...the males and females have differing feather colors upon hatching.

I find the Red Stars to be friendly, easy to catch and pick up, and good layers. They are the perfect 'starter' chicken for a family with children.

While I used to agree with the other reviews about them being rather homely looking, I have changed my opinon. I currently have four Red Stars and they are each uniquely beautiful. Some are more orange, some are more white, some are copper. The look so nice when the free range in green grass.


Pros: Friendly, very good layer, cold hardy, great foragers

Cons: None

Can't say enough good things about this breed. They aren't susceptible to frostbite (toes or comb). A bit bossy if allowed to become head of the flock, but always friendly and very good guards of the flock. Their laying habits and eggs are even better than Leghorns'. If let out early enough, they will forage most of their food, coming back in the evening with a full crop. They are very smart, not flighty, and one of the best all-around chickens there are.


Pros: Good layers, nice big eggs, rarely go broody, very friendly and sweet-tempered

Cons: Not the prettiest chicken

I've found Red Stars to be very good layers, and some of their eggs are enormous.  If you are looking for a chicken with a good personality, then I would recommend a star.  They are usually good 'people-chickens' and will try to get into your house to be with you!  However if you're after show chickens, stars are not the prettiest chickens around.  Also keep in mind that sometimes (not often) they can be prone to bullying other hens.


Pros: an egg a day almost without fail

Cons: none

These are great birds!  I am new to this and ordered a couple with my first day old chick order in spring 2012.  From the beginning the red girls were the friendliest.  They are easily handled and if we leave the door open they and our Delawares come in the house and are likely to hop up on the coffee table and ask for a snack.


They are inquisitive and fun to watch.  My two started laying at 19 and 20 weeks and now in early Dec.  I can count on an egg a day from each of them. I have only been disappointed twice. But they are still young,  My Delawares and Autralorps didn't start laying until week 29 so if the Red Star girls want a day off from time to time I have no problem.


The eggs are a beautiful red brown and they have given me couple of double yolkers. The white tipped red feathers make these very pretty birds as well.


As long as I have a flock of chickens, I plan to have Red Stars in it


ETA..They have now been laying for 6 mos and I have had an egg a day from each with only three exceptions. 


Pros: great egg production not skitish

Cons: LOVE to eat will eat ANYTHING not very pretty, red not black are pretty.

I have three black stars. They are probably the best egg layers you will get. Red stars are not the prettiest breed and not as good egg layers as black stars.thumbsup.gif


Pros: Great personality, very productive

Cons: short-lived

My Gold Comet from is my favorite of the mixed flock. She is the friendliest and has learned to come when she's called. She was the first to lay, at just under 19 weeks. She's got a funny little personality and is so bold! She'll invite herself to outdoor dinners whether you like it or not. She hasn't taken a day off since she started laying. I love the heritage breeds and the fancy eggs they lay, but highly suggest getting one of these to crank eggs out while the fickle and finnicky fancy fowl are taking their sweet time to mature. Sadly, I'm told that all those eggs take their toll and they are not long-lived chickens.  


Pros: great layers of nice large brown eggs, super friendly

Cons: very dominant

My red stars are some of my favorite chickens, I currently have 4 and they are by far my most friendly. Almost to friendly, they not only want some attention, they DEMAND it. Any outstretched arm or lap must be immediately occupied. Very reliable layers, always get 3-4 eggs from my 4 hens daily, rain or shine. They are the top of the pecking order and the undeniable queens of the coop, I was having some trouble with them getting a little over aggressive with my very docile brahmas but after the first year everyone knows there place and get along great. Definitely a chicken to have if you want tame hens.


Pros: Consistent layers, great foragers

Cons: None yet.

I have one red star and two black stars. The red star is older by several months and is the "QUEEN" - all capital letters! She can be a bit aggressive with the black girls, especially over food. There is a significant difference in the sizes of the red and the black with the black girls being much larger even though they are younger.


My red gal has been a consistent layer since Day #1. She lays huge eggs and rarely takes a day off. I'd say she lay's at least 28-29 days out of the month. The black girls have only been laying about 2 months and their eggs are just now coming to full size. One particular girl is also laying very consistently and rarely takes a day off. The second black gal lays for 5 days and then takes a day off. Yes, I've been keeping track. 


They have entertaining personalities, come running when they see me, but aren't "lap" birds. They are also fairly quiet, which is a plus. I will say they love to forage and I'll see them pacing in the run until I let them out. Due to the difference in size, the black girls consume more feed pellets than the red so - in the long run - I would think the black would be more expensive to maintain. I do think the black a more physically attractive bird than the red. Their feathers glisten with shades of green, blue, and gold at the throat. The red isn't unattractive but she's not outstanding, either. 


I'm new to this hobby and chose these particular birds based on the info in the breed database here. I've been very pleased with my choice and would recommend them to anyone considering raising backyard chickens with a focus on egg production. 


Pros: Lay an egg nealy every day without fail, friendly, great foragers

Cons: Loud I laid an egg alarm

We only have two red stars in our flock, they are amazing. One comes up to be petted, the other rides around on my shoulder when I'm outside. These two girls hands down beat our buff orpington ladies in the friendly department. They are sweet and lay without fail, also have not gone broody like our buff orpingtons. Ours even beat out our silkies in the friendly department. They are great foragers when allowed to free range, I nearly always get an egg a day from them. They are also very curious and always want to know what we are up to. They will follow us around the yard like puppies and let our daughter pet them. The only con is if you don't want to give them attention at any time they will demand it. They also very loudly announce to you when they have laid an egg. Every time. Sometimes for 5 minutes. They can be as loud as a rooster crowing in the morning. Our red star girls will run through the back door into the kitchen if they feel we haven't fed them soon enough. Ours have never failed to give us an egg since they started laying this summer. They really have opened our eyes to hybrid breeds. I am glad we have them in our flock. They have laid rain or shine, hot or cold weather, since they began laying this past summer. They also vary enough in looks we can easily tell them apart at a glance, unlike our other hens where we have to look very closely because they are so similar.

We initially were not impressed, as our very young daughter picked them and we had no idea what they were until they feathered out. Now? We love them. Easily the favorite of the chickens in our flock that include Gold Laced Wyandottes, Buff Orpingtons, and one Rhode Island Red. It'll be a hard choice between Red Stars and EEs when we need to add some fresh, young egg laying hens to our flock.

The only bad parts are the demands and the egg alarm. They demand attention. Where our other birds are content to have nothing to do with us as long as they have food, our red stars are in our business 24/7. They just have to know what's going on. They also very loudly announce they have laid an egg. Forever. Lol. It goes on forever, they love to do this even more than our RIR. I used to always run to the backyard thinking something was wrong, now I know it's just the egg alarm so I can empty the nest box.

Black Star and Red Star are trade names used for hybrids of two other recognized breeds, not itself an APA recognized breed. They are one of many hybrids more commonly called Red Sex-Linked or Black Sex-links. Typically a red male chicken breed is crossed with a white or barred female to breed them. Crossing a Rhode Island Red male and a Delaware female makes a Red Star. By crossing a Rhode Island Red male and a Barred Plymouth Rock female, a Black Star is created.

Breed PurposeDual Purpose
Climate ToleranceAll Climates
Egg ProductivityHigh
Egg SizeLarge
Egg ColorBrown
Breed TemperamentFriendly,Easily handled,Calm,Bears confinement well,Docile
Breed Colors/VarietiesBlack and Red
Breed SizeLarge Fowl
Model Name/TypeMPNEAN/UPC

Chicken Breed Info:

Breed Purpose: Dual Purpose
Comb: Single
Broodiness: Seldom, if ever
Climate Tolerance: All Climates

General Egg Info:

Egg Productivity: High (6-7/wk per chick)
Egg Size: Large/XLarge
Egg Color: Brown

Breed Temperament:

Friendly, Easily handled, Calm, Bears confinement well, Docile, Quiet (unless lonely or danger involved), doesn't cackle before, during or after laying. 

Breed Colors / Varieties:

Black and Red

Breed Details:

Red Star hens are friendly, docile, quiet, dependable layers. At maturity, the females weigh about 5 to 6 lbs. They are good pets for small backyards or excellent layers for large production flocks. Stars can be sorted by gender, based on their color characteristics at hatching. They will not breed true in the second or subsequent generations, thus the offspring of Stars will not be able to be accurately sexed based on color. Females are excellent layers and males make good fryers. Red star females are buff/red at hatch and mature to mostly red with a few white feathers. Red Star males are light yellow as chicks and mature to white with portions of red, buff, or brown. Black Star females are all black as chicks and mature to black with some accents of red. At hatch, males are black as well, but have a white spot on their heads as chicks and later they resemble the Barred Rock as adults. Hatcheries sometimes call them by their own brand names, and the crossings can vary slightly. Some of these brands include Red Star, Black Star, ISA Brown, Hubbard, Gingernut Ranger, Comet, Cinnamon Queen. Here are the most common hybrids and the crosses used to make them. Black Star/Black Sex Link: New Hampshire Red X Barred Rock. Rhode Island Red X Barred Rock.--- Red Star/Red Sex Link: RIR X Delware. RIR X White Leghorn. RIR X Rhode Island White. Production Red X Delaware.--- Cinnamon Queen: New Hampshire Red X Silver Laced Whyandotte.--- Golden Comet/ Gold Sex linked: New Hampshire Red X White Rock. RIR X Rhode Island White.--- Gingernut Ranger (found in the U.K.): RIR X Light Sussex.--- *Cockerel photo used with permission from BYC member "Rafter 7 Paint Horses."