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Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by AAJ, Dec 25, 2011.
I think that I want a mixed flock, but I do not want them to cross breed.
I have a mixed flock, there is no problems,,,,,I had two roosters , found homes for them so no intermixing of breeds. Everyone seem to get along just fine. I have seen that the Australorps hang out together, the Wyndottes hang out together etc etc. I have a very colorful group.
If you don't want them to cross breed then no, a mixed flock would not be good for you. A rooster isn't particular about what hen he mates with, so if you want pure bred hatching eggs you need to have a flock with only one breed. You could try going with a rooster and hens of one breed and then add several hens of other breeds that lay different colored eggs than the breed of your rooster. That way you can incubate only the eggs that would be purebred and eat the other hens' eggs. Remember, just because you have a rooster doesn't mean you have to hatch the eggs, and all eggs taste the same whether they are fertilized by a rooster of a different breed, or not fertilized at all. Otherwise you'll have to have separate pens for each breed you want to raise and keep separate flocks.
If you're going to breed them you'll need individual breeding pens. Anytime you're not planning to hatch eggs or sell them as hatching eggs they can roam together, though, depending on how many different roosters you have there could be problems among them. From what I've read on here you need to wait about 2 weeks after separating them before the eggs will be "pure" but that's not my area of expertise so check with someone else about that. I have a mixed flock because there are a number of breeds of chickens that I like and I love the look of all of them running around together. However I only have one roo (currently a barred rock). Since I'm not raising specific breeds to sell hatching eggs or chicks this isn't a problem. I don't incubate eggs but if a hen decides to set I'll let her- there are lots of lovely and good mixed chickens out there who lay just fine.
Quote:very well said
I like a mixed flock for the variety of looks, eggs, personalities but if I want purebreds I have a separate pen.
My first flock was eight different breeds all hens with the exception of two Rd bantam frizzle roosters. Believe me those little guys had not problems staying in charge. We did name one Cowboy Curtiss cuz when he would "dance" with the big girls he looked like he was riding a horse. The selected girl would be running around the yard with Curtiss on her back. It was quite amusing.
I LOVE the look of a mixed flock and I know lots of people do it with no issues.
I had an EE and a BO and even though I raised them together from day old chicks, the EE bullied the BO. I finally gave her away.
So I do think there's a little consideration that needs to go into your plan. Try to get birds that are the same sized and personality. I wouldn't mix a really high strung bird with one who is know for being super docile, like Orpingtons.
But it can totally be done.
Another option would be to have breeds whose eggs are very different together, then you'll know for sure who laid what and be able to keep that type pure. For example, a few EE's and a few BO's with a BO roo. Then you'll know to keep only the brown eggs for hatching, not the green or blue ones.
Quote:Can't have it that way. A rooster of any breed will mate a hen of any other breed. They aren't picky. Now, if you want them to run together, then separate out a rooster and certain hens for several weeks so you are sure it's that particular rooster who is the sire of the chicks, you can do that. Some folks let their flocks run together all winter, then separate out certain breeds into pens for hatching out chicks of that breed in the spring/summer.
ETA: I love my mixed laying flock, led by my Delaware rooster. I currently have only two Delaware hens so I know their eggs are pure, but of course, if I incubate any others in that flock, they'd be Dellie crosses so I rarely do that.
Mixed flocks work together perfectly; most backyards have mixed flocks.
If you want purebreds though you'll have to separate them. However there's nothing wrong with mutts or hybrids, considering the best selling chickens are hybrids (sex-links) And unless your flock is made up of non-hatchery, show, or heritage strain stock, your purebreds will sell for the same price as mutts.