Advice for ordering chicks - breeds and other questions!

HogWildAboutChix

Chirping
Apr 16, 2020
87
234
63
What breeds should I order? What hatchery?
I currently have Orpingtons (Crele&Lavs), LF Cochins, and Polish.

I am a seasoned chicken owner, who enjoys incubating and raising chicks. I do sell chicks and mature birds every so often as supplemental income, and to keep my flocks young and diverse.

I LIKE PRETTY CHICKENS!!! BUT I also want them to be good layers, and would like to have a breed or two that are dual purpose (for the extra Roos).

Id like some brown and white layers. I am considering Brown Leghorns, Black Jersey Giants, Rhode Island (just a classic), and Deleware.

Throw me your ideas!
 

Aapomp831

Crowing
Oct 4, 2017
3,670
6,222
471
Lincolnton, NC
Black sex links are my favorite... they are beautiful, docile, friendly and can get really large. They lay large brown eggs regularly, and the males are large enough to make a good meal. I know, boring..... but to me I get the most bang for my buck bc of the copious egg laying.
 

21hens-incharge

Moderator
BYC Staff
Premium Feather Member
7 Years
Mar 9, 2014
26,734
111,079
1,722
Northern Colorado
A lot will depend on your location.

I also really like the black sex links. I don't find them boring at all. They are outgoing. They have a unique yet similar colors and are full of spunk. They are amazing layers of big brown eggs. As spunky as they are they may need housed separate from birds with head floof.

I added 3 more this fall. Still young in this pic but you can see all 3 are colored uniquely.
IMG_20201124_140803.jpg

This is Rudy. She is my boss bird. She has very pretty red feathers.
IMG_20201014_100545.jpg
 
Last edited:

hysop

Back from hiatus (11/24/21)
Premium Feather Member
Sep 16, 2019
3,984
14,177
686
SW Georgia
What I’ve read is that true Jersey Giants take forever to grow and if you process too early the majority of the weight comes from their bones not meat. Not sure if it’s the same for Jersey Giants bought from hatcheries.

But they are really gentle and sweet.
 

hysop

Back from hiatus (11/24/21)
Premium Feather Member
Sep 16, 2019
3,984
14,177
686
SW Georgia
I love Australorp chickens. They’re my favorite. I don’t have anymore, but they get pretty large. Not sure if there’s a difference between Australorps and Jersey Giants (that comes from hatcheries not breeders)
 

HogWildAboutChix

Chirping
Apr 16, 2020
87
234
63
Thanks for the replies!
We had a black sex link hen - we loved her! She definitely had a ton of personality.

This poses one of my most wondered questions- When you buy sex link chicks from the hatcheries and it says "straight run" does the hatchery give you half and half gender wise?

I do know that most dual purpose birds take a while to reach maximum processing size. And that is ok with me, I am totally grossed out by "meat birds". So unnatural!
 

21hens-incharge

Moderator
BYC Staff
Premium Feather Member
7 Years
Mar 9, 2014
26,734
111,079
1,722
Northern Colorado
Thanks for the replies!
We had a black sex link hen - we loved her! She definitely had a ton of personality.

This poses one of my most wondered questions- When you buy sex link chicks from the hatcheries and it says "straight run" does the hatchery give you half and half gender wise?

I do know that most dual purpose birds take a while to reach maximum processing size. And that is ok with me, I am totally grossed out by "meat birds". So unnatural!

It is supposed to mean they haven't looked to see if they are male or female at all. You could get mostly females or mostly males or a near 50/50 mix.

I am trying out a couple production blues (bought mine as blue rocks). So far (still babies really) mine look like they will be decent sized birds. They are rather pretty.

For white eggs it will be a challenge to find larger breeds that lay those.

Do you get a lot of really cold (below zero) weather where you are?
 

HogWildAboutChix

Chirping
Apr 16, 2020
87
234
63
I live in Virginia, we have pretty moderate weather and have never had any issues with heat or cold affecting my birds.

Not all of the breeds need to be dual purpose. Like the Brown Leghorns, would be for eggs and chick sales only. There are old school folks that like white eggs for eating.

As far as sexing chicks - Im curious in regards to chicks that are obviously sexed. By color and pattern. The hatchery have to have some idea of what they were giving you.
 

hysop

Back from hiatus (11/24/21)
Premium Feather Member
Sep 16, 2019
3,984
14,177
686
SW Georgia
I live in Virginia, we have pretty moderate weather and have never had any issues with heat or cold affecting my birds.

Not all of the breeds need to be dual purpose. Like the Brown Leghorns, would be for eggs and chick sales only. There are old school folks that like white eggs for eating.

As far as sexing chicks - Im curious in regards to chicks that are obviously sexed. By color and pattern. The hatchery have to have some idea of what they were giving you.

This thread shows how to make sex linked chickens

https://www.backyardchickens.com/threads/sex-linked-information.261208/

So instead of buying black sex link you could buy a Black Australorp male and Barred Rock/Plymouth Rock females and hatch their eggs.

I’m sure you know, but I’ll mention for anyone who may stumble upon the thread in a far away future. Sex links won’t reproduce and make sex links.

As far as hatcheries selling straight run sex linked chicks. They probably fill the orders of who bought pullets. And once those orders are filled for the week they give the rest to whoever asked for straight run is my guess.
 

21hens-incharge

Moderator
BYC Staff
Premium Feather Member
7 Years
Mar 9, 2014
26,734
111,079
1,722
Northern Colorado
I live in Virginia, we have pretty moderate weather and have never had any issues with heat or cold affecting my birds.

Not all of the breeds need to be dual purpose. Like the Brown Leghorns, would be for eggs and chick sales only. There are old school folks that like white eggs for eating.

As far as sexing chicks - Im curious in regards to chicks that are obviously sexed. By color and pattern. The hatchery have to have some idea of what they were giving you.

I think shipping the chicks is far to fast paced for them to think about ratios with every order.

BSL's are a RIR and barred rock cross hence the red colors. Specifically a RIR rooster and barred rock hen. At least in the hatcheries I have looked at and the ones I have bought.

https://www.cacklehatchery.com/4-outstanding-dual-purpose-sex-link-hybrid-chickens/

There are autosexing breeds that do breed true each generation. I am not super familiar with those.

Interesting read in the link from @hysop. It does state a BA roo over a barred rock hen would produce black sex links.
 
Last edited:

New posts New threads Active threads

Top Bottom