Barred Rock

Average User Rating:
  • Breed Purpose:
    Dual Purpose
    Climate Tolerance:
    All Climates
    Egg Productivity:
    Egg Size:
    Egg Color:
    Breed Temperament:
    Kind, Skittish
    Breed Colors/Varieties:
    Barred (black and white)
    Breed Size:
    Large Fowl
    APA/ABA Class:
    Barred Rock Rooster​

    The Plymouth Rock a.k.a. Barred Rock is a very popular duel-purpose American breed, known for their excellent laying ability, general hardiness, and calm good nature which makes them a good choice for small backyard flocks and homesteaders.

    Chickens called "Plymouth Rocks" were shown as early as 1849, but that flock disappeared and later strains from several different breeders combined to form the foundation of today’s Plymouth Rock breed. Mr. D.A. Upham of Worcester, MA is credited as being one of the primary influences on the breed, he first exhibited his birds at the Worcester, MA poultry exhibition in 1869. His birds are generally acknowledged to be the ancestors of the breed we know today.

    A number of different breeds are reputed to have gone into the formation of the Plymouth Rock, including Dominique, Brahma, Black Java and Cochin. The breed gained a great deal of popularity quickly and the Plymouth Rock became the most popular farm chicken in the United States up until WWII.

    The original color of the breed was Barred and early in the breeds history the name "Plymouth Rock" implied a barred bird. Barred varieties remain the most popular color today. As more color varieties were developed, the name Plymouth Rock became the designation for the entire breed, which can now can be found in other colors including White, Buff, Partridge, Silver Penciled, Columbian and Blue.

    The Barred Plymouth Rock was one of the breeds used as the foundation for the commercial broiler industry in the united States in the 1920's and the White Rock is still often used as the female side of the Cornish Rocks or Cornish Cross type commercial broiler cross.

    They are single combed, quite winter hardy, and the hens are good layers of brown eggs. They are occasionally broody and make good setters and mothers.

    The Plymouth Rock breed was recognized by the APA in 1874 and is on The Livestock Conservancy's Recovering list.

    Barred Rock chicks

    BR pullet.jpg
    Barred Rock Juvenile (pullet)

    Barred Rock hen
  • 0431f373_one-patch-drama-queen.jpeg 93db5669_1331372955_20120411_1927311.jpeg a4463a49_DSC02569.jpeg f6383474_DSCF7227.jpeg 144631ba_DSCF7231.jpeg c58ef86c_Kellys2012-13026.jpeg 313a810e_Kellys2012-13038.jpeg e2ccfabc_BarredRock2.jpeg 7be79206_My3IowaBlues.jpeg a198004e_20130908_110855.jpeg c0764186_20130908_163728.jpeg dfcfbe16_banjo.jpeg 41179d7a_2013-12-2714.32.00.jpeg 00264d4b_1369090359987.jpeg 2efae8d1_photo13.jpeg 65d36c27_IMG_1402.jpeg b28236b2_DSC07317.jpeg 34fd7a60_61Days3.jpeg 36aaa4e8_DSC_0024-3.jpeg 5a690b38_image.jpeg d3a21958_DSCF6075.jpeg 4be0dd00_DSCF6128.jpeg 9c9f6649_IMG_1651.jpeg ca7cc23e_chicks3.jpeg 22e47948_IMG_3112.jpeg 6283b9ad_Layla.jpeg 6e3dff58_image.jpeg 8664001f_IMG_20160712_173005488.jpeg 24f97899_DSC05815.jpeg 20170905_152814.jpg BR pullet.jpg c0764186_20130908_163728.jpg

  • Chicken Breed Info:

    Breed Purpose: Dual purpose

    Comb: Single

    Broodiness: Average

    Climate Tolerance: All

    General Egg Info:
    Egg Productivity: High

    Egg Size: Large

    Egg Color: Brown

    Breed Temperament: Kind, Calm, Skittish, Sweet, Docile, Over Protective Cocks

    Breed Colors / Varieties:
    Black and White Barring

    Breed Details:

    Chicken Breed Photos:

    Primary Image





    Egg (left)




Linda L, Ajulycc, PoshFlock and 12 others like this.

Recent User Reviews

  1. moniquem
    "Not my favorite"
    Pros - She's pretty..
    Cons - Bossy, loud and not a great layer

    This is Louise, she is 7.5 months now. I got my first flock of 4 chickens in April. I have a BA, SS,EE and BR. She started "laying" at about 20 weeks but there have been many problems with her eggs. I wold say 50% of the time she lays soft shelled eggs, maybe 2-3 times per week. So.....I don't get many eggs.

    Besides the egg laying she is extremely loud, she is always walking around the yard like she's looking for something or someone whinning the whole time. She is also the bully of the bunch and has tried dominating me, which i showed her was not an option!

    If I knew then what I know now I would have made other choices for chickens. I will not get another one of this breed. My fault though, I read the reviews that they can be bossy but I love the classic look of these so really wanted one. If she continues to have problems laying I may re-home her :(
  2. crazychick912
    "I love my Barred Rocks"
    Pros - Good egg layers. Friendly and easy tempered
    Cons - None
    I knew nothing about them when I first got them. They are great.
    My husband who really wants nothing to with the chickens had a Barred Rock that followed him everywhere he went on our property. He told me, "That spotted one keeps following me. She's always clucking and talking up a storm." He ended up naming her "Spot". And where he was, so was she.
  3. Kathy Keeney
    Pros - Great all around chicken. Great layers.
    Cons - Roosters are MEAN

User Comments

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  1. puckpuck8
    The bared rocks that I got originally for eggs, I never named them because someday you might eat them for stew. Well that changed, when you develop a relationship with an animal it is hard to think about their demise. So I decided to name them and let them live out their lives as retired senior hens after providing eggs, they did their job. If you go hunting for deer you don't develop a relationship, that's short term and a food source. The hens are a decision of whether you use them for eggs or meat purpose, it's a personal choice.
    1. MagdaMae
      My experience is that Barred Rocks lay for years. I've never retired mine especially since the eggs eventually become huge.
      MagdaMae, May 26, 2018
  2. midnoight
    My favorite breed! A must-have in a flock!
      MichelleT, Ajulycc and BlackHackle like this.
  3. Chook to chook
    Our Barred Rock is one of the most reliable in our flock of many. She is calm, gets along with everyone, easy to handle, and doesn't really mind being toted around by our two boys. Very regular layer and hearty. Not bad as a forager. Super stable girl and good neighbor.
      hilde1, Ajulycc and Jenz007 like this.
  4. Liz Birdlover
    They haven't met my Rocky Roo! Raised with love from a very young age, I can assure you, he is not so tame, will attack and spur strangers, only tolerates me, and will spur me unless I grab him, scoop him up and carry him around as I try to do one-handed chicken chores as he sometimes pecks or bites at me, usually getting a beak full of my clothing, as I've learned to wear long sleeves/pants around his ornery, feathered butt! When I offer my flock treats, they all peck the treats gently, but he pecks hard, like he is ticked off that my hand is still touching "his" treat. He also has a very loud crow, louder than my other 2 Roo's., which makes him a great "watch bird" keeping us alerted to anyone outside within sight or driving down our lane. People have driven down our road to "find out where that loud rooster lives" and they live over a mile away. LOL He is a gorgeous, handsome Roo, and he takes his job very seriously, always on duty, and despite his grumpiness, I love him. :)

    Sweet Pea is Rocky Roo's girl, she is a nice hen, but not so nice to other hens at times. She is very skittish, even though I gave both her and Rocky lots of attention, pets and hugs when they were young. She lays very beautiful, smooth, large but perfectly shaped, light brown eggs.

    I love my Barred Rocks! They always make me smile. They're super cute when I give them treats or mealworms, making sweet sounds. They are a joy to have.
    1. featherhead007
      I think you have my rooster, little blue my rooster acts the very same way. Thanks for the read
      featherhead007, Feb 8, 2018
      Liz Birdlover likes this.
    2. MagdaMae
      Same here, tried to keep my Roo tame but no luck. He watches and if I get busy and lose track of him, I get attacked. If I get annoyed or have lots of chores, I catch him and put him in a cat carrier for awhile. He gets his dignity bruised, but that' all.
      MagdaMae, May 26, 2018
  5. JuliaOlivia
    I love our barred rocks. Some are shy some aren't. One of ours is very friendly. If your hens aren't very friendly don't be discouraged! They are much tamer after they lay eggs. They lay nice big brown eggs.
    1. featherhead007
      MY rocks are laying now, and i've never missed a breakfast since! not to mention, one perches like a parrot .. A special built roost in my other den, she prefers to sleep closer to me because there are distractions in the coop that causes stress on her.. I have 12 chickens free ranging! I have put 296 wanted felons in prison for various crimes, none of them was for pecking out of order.... oh god i love retirement!
      featherhead007, Sep 7, 2017
  6. Kevin_87
    Someone forget to tell my two that they are a quiet breed.
      jmn85 and MagdaMae like this.
  7. puckpuck8
    Originally had four bared rocks, one a year later one hen had some problems and passed on. I got a young hen to replace her, the older hens would chase the new hen a lot. A neighbor told me when they had a chicken farm, that introducing new hens can be frustrating. What I needed is to get a buddy for the new hen, sure enough it worked. The two young hens got chased around together. Eventually the older hens have left them alone except for the pecking order thing. In town you can't have a rooster, which would come in handy to keep an eye on the local red tail.
      featherhead007 and Bonnie sue like this.
  8. featherhead007
    2 times my hen shown here, laid a beautiful brown egg in my hand. i knew by her squack that she was ready, but yes i know all my ladies quite well.
    the egg never touched the nesting box floor. How is that for fresh!!!!
      Liz Birdlover and Chlady55 like this.
  9. sidders chicken
    I have 2 barred rocks!!! best chicken breeds ever!!! quiet and great layers!
      punatiquemama and featherhead007 like this.
  10. MichelleT
    We got 5 chicks to add to our flock of 4 the first week of May. We got 2 Easter Eggers, 1 New Hampshire Red, 1 Black Astraulorp and 1 Barred Rock. Our BR, Lilibet, was the "runt" of her group at the feed store and I was a little worried she wouldn't thrive. That is not the case, however. I don't feel like I really "know" our other chicks well enough to rate them yet, but Lilibet is the stand-out. She's always the first to come out of the coop in the morning (beating the big girls on some days), is brave enough to go in for the "treats" and is scooting out the run gate more often than not. She always gets picked up and delivered back to the run, and she clucks and complains, but it can't bother her too much or she'd quit doing it. :) At 12 weeks old she is the friendliest of our chick group and I can't wait to see what kind of hen she'll be!
      featherhead007 and OG Anomaly like this.
    1. MichelleT
      Sadly, we lost Lilibet about 2 weeks after I posted. Necropsy showed an egg sac that didn't form (she was only 14 weeks old) and she got a bacterial infection. We'll definitely get another BR or two in the spring when we get a new batch of chicks though. RIP Lili!
      MichelleT, Sep 8, 2017
      featherhead007 likes this.

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