I am mainly going for pets. I like the idea of getting eggs but
I really just want a good friend that will be friendly.
Welcome! Bantams are cute and many are broody, a real advantage for raising your own chicks. I love my Belgian d'Uccles, and have also liked the Buff Brahmas and Cochins. Silkies are more fragile and may not do as well in the cold, or in a mixed flock. Speckled Sussex aren't on your list, but the hens can be very friendly and are beautiful too. Australorps are nice and will produce a lot of eggs. Easter Eggers come in all colors and produce more eggs than most Ameraucanas. Wyandottes are lovely and come in many colors too. I also like the BC Marans and Welsummers for their dark eggs, and the white Chanteclers are very good and cold hardy. Plymouth Rocks are good birds, loved the buff especially. I haven't been as pleased with production reds, leghorns, and hybrid layers; great egg producers, but more likely to be overly pushy in a mixed flock. Favorelles are wonderful but so meek that they tend to be at the bottom of the pecking order, especially with those pushy types. Mary
since they are all being kept together and will be in close quarters a lot i would avoid the small breeds. putting small breed birds in with the large breeds is asking for trouble. that said i love the ameraucana/ bcm and the cross between them. my two olive eggers are top of the pecking order and mostly mellow. they prevented a lot of fights for me while mine were still mixed breed flock. anyone who created a disturbance got put down, even the roo lol.
thanks for the info. I actually already have a speckled Sussex roo and he is great. If he turns out to be aggressive I may have to get rid oh him. If I do though I will definitely will get a hen(although he was supposed to be a hen lol) I was also wondering after reading about a thread were a guy had levels in his coop. I was wondering if that would help at all with adding square footage and more space. also I might stay away from the favorelles unless
I end up being able to maybe be able to separate them and some bantams or if I find that the rest of the flock are nice to it. my neighbor probably would be ok with taking it to because she just has one lonely hen that sleeps on her porch at night. lol
I have roosts at a few different heights in my shed/coop. The whole shed is 10 by 12 for 15 birds. I live in an area where, due to a very rainy, windy climate, the flock does spend a lot of time inside. I've got 2 roosts at 3 feet high, 3 roosts are 6 feet high, and 1 is about 5 feet high. My Barred Rocks do get a bit testy after a few days, though. The Easter Eggers and Australorps handle confinement better.
It works well for the most part, as long as they aren't stuck inside for more than a couple days. They always have a choice to go out in the rain if they want to. I'm certainly not going to push my luck and try to keep more than 20 birds in there during the rainy season. The multiple levels help them avoid each other if they need too, but it's not a substitute for sq footage. When it's time to replace my Barred Rocks, I will probably choose a more mellow breed. Those girls really need their space or they can get really obnoxious.
Dose it have separate levels or roosts that are higher and lower? just wondering. thanks so much for the advice! I just want to do my first coop and basically my first flock right. I rather not have all the breeds I want and happy birds than have them all and squished together and grumpy.
The 2 narrow roosts are about 3 feet high, both 9 feet long. I ended up screwing a 2x4 on top of one them to better support the weight of my rooster. On the right, that shelf was replaced by a large pine branch that's about 5 feet long. It's about 5 feet high.
You can see the main sleeping roosts on the left. There are 3 of them. They are about 6 feet high, about 9 feet long, and spaced about 9 inches apart. If this was a 'for sleeping only' coop I would have enough room for over 40 birds.
I even have room for the dog kennel that serves as the brooding suite. Hens can brood right inside the coop so there is no worries about integrating the broody back into the flock.