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Chicken Breeds item created by Super Admin, Jan 10, 2012
Pros - lovely hens, nice eggs colour!
This was the first breed I hatched. I love the color of the hens and eggs. They are nice and sweet
Pros - Beautiful rooster.
Cons - Mean rooster
Pros - Decent summer layer, unique egg
Cons - Stops laying eggs mid-fall through early spring.
When we first got our flock, we had multiple breeds for variety. While they are an attractive bird, and have had great temperament (two hens), I noticed that they are not great layers beyond the summer season. They were typically the first to stop laying eggs when the fall season came around. I'd say I could get eggs consistently maybe 5-6 months out of the year with my Welsummers?
The only ones that lay year round (without the aid of artificial light in the winter) were my Barred Rock and Rhode Island Reds.
Pros - They get along with my other breeds. Come running when called.
Cons - stay at the back of the flock
I really enjoy having them join my flock. They are so shy and sweet. They are very alert and let the rest of the flock know when something is not right.
Pros - Great disposition, even the roosters are great! Coloring of Roo's is beautiful as is hen's egg coloring.
Cons - Some hens can be too timid for aggressive breeds so think carefully about mixed flock breeds.
Of the four hens and 1 rooster I have in my mixed flock they all have a great temperament. My rooster at 20 weeks is already alerting to danger and caring for the flock. He is not aggressive either like some of my other roosters of the same age. Then hens are very well tempered and are able to handle my mixed flock that contains hens that range in age from 3 years to 20 weeks. They love people so be prepared for hens that will run to you for attention. Eggs in my older Welsummers are beautiful in color ranging from mid brown with spots to light brown with spots. The are a breed that will always remain in my mixed flock.
Pros - Nice-looking, Great Egg Layers, Pretty Eggs, Good Free-Rangers, Handleable
Cons - MINE IS VERY LOUD, Not Easy to Catch
My experience with Welsummers have been great!
She is very pretty. I love her golden nape (back of neck) feathers.
Her eggs are amazing! I love their dark color! She is a consistent and reliable layer.
She is very predator-aware and free-ranges well. She always stays with the group, but is less inclined to stray from cover.
She is hard to catch, but is extremely docile once in my arms. She never tries to flap away, like my other girls do when restrained.
Mine screams! She is stupendously loud EVERY morning.
She is really difficult to catch, which can be a pro with predators.
Consensus: I would recommend her for any free-ranging flock
Pros - Independent, Smart, Good Forager,
Cons - None
My Welsummer has been top hen from day one, even keeping our young cockerel in line when I first introduced him. She lays well, though not as often as my EE's. I still get 3-4 eggs a week from her, all lovely brown. What she lacks in laying power she makes up for in smarts. If something is wrong she will come over to the porch and cluck under the dining room window until I'm summoned. We once had a couple pullets go missing, and try as we might we could not find them. She led me over to where their bodies were in a neighbor's yard behind a big maple tree by camping there, and clucking angrily until I came looking for her. She didn't budge from the spot for anything, even treats, until I walked over to have a look at why she was so upset. Welsummers in general tend to be stand-offish, but my Rosie is the boldest girl in my mixed flock, and while she doesn't seek out petting or attention most of the time, she's okay with being picked up. She will also ask to be picked up and carried if its very snowy or wet between where she is and where she wants to go (but doesn't stick around once I get her across). If you want a decent layer with pretty eggs and a big personality, the Welsummer is definitely the bird for your flock!
Pros - Nice terra cotta egg, well behaved
Cons - Not overly friendly, average layer
When searching for dark egg layers, I've heard many people are disappointed with hatchery chicks. I have to admit tgat I was concerned waiting for my first Welsummer egg. These eggs are certainly not chocolate or particularly dark, but they are darker than my other brown egg layers with tiny speckles. I have been happy with the four or five, terra cotta eggs a week. This hen is not friendly, but she's not aggressive or mean either. She's a nice bird all around.
The reason I only have one is that Murray McMurray only offers them straight run. I got four cockerels and three hens. Two hens and one cockerel all died as chicks from an impacted crop. I find that suspect. I normally make out well with MM. Maybe a bad batch? It would have been better if I didn't have to go straight run. Oh well. I'll probably order more anyway.
Pros - Sweet personality, pretty eggs, large eggs relative to bird size, integrates well with flock, winter hardy
Cons - None come to mind
My only Welsummer came from a hatchery. She arrived by mail in poor shape and was very undersized. She pulled through with extra attention but was stunted for many months. However, she eventually caught up and matured to a normal 4-5 lbs. She is among my sweetest birds in a mixed flock of half-dozen-plus other breeds and does well with others. She is always quiet and calm. She lays beautiful terracotta eggs that seem large for her size, so she is likely good for feed efficiency. I wish I had more Welsummers and will be including them in future additions. After molting last fall, she has resumed her second season of laying in mid-January, ahead of most of my other layers. She has been fine in heat and cold.
Pros - Pretty eggs, decent layer, lovely bird
Cons - Standoffish, didn't tame well
I cared for a flock of chickens (varied breeds) at my last job, and the welsummer and I had a longstanding feud. Despite all attempts to socialize or bribe her, no matter how much time or how many treats, she did NOT like people and was always the last to be put away because while the others usually cooperated and went into the run when I started rounding them up, miss Poorwinter (yes, we're extremely original) was just as contrary as her name and would run off every which direction, screaming bloody murder and acting generally like an idiot. Her eggs were a pretty medium brown with speckles (they were no where near chocolate, not even at POL, and she was not from hatchery stock), and in summer she laid about 3-4 a week, winter she slowed to 1-2. When I was planning my home flock, I intentionally left out the welsummers. It may just have been my particular hen's personality, but she was such a frustrating bird that I didn't feel the pros outweighed the cons. She also was an aggressive forager and ripped the landscape to shreds, which is fine if you've just got pastures, but for a backyard flock she'd be a nightmare. When planning for dark, pretty eggs, I chose a golden cuckoo marans for the rich browns instead-- much better experience.