Beginner Breeds

Discussion in 'General breed discussions & FAQ' started by ScarletHarvest, Jan 12, 2019.

  1. ScarletHarvest

    ScarletHarvest In the Brooder

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    I'm considering a few different beginner breeds. I live in city limits and we are only allowed 6 hens and 0 roos. I know for a fact I want Brahmas (I love those feathered legs) as my brown colored egg layers. But I also want good green/blue egg layers and Easter Eggers are supposed to be good for beginners, though their eggs can range in many colors. Possibly even leg horns for white eggs (for family memvers that are picky about egg color).

    As I want my flock varied slightly I don't want all 6 to just be one of those breeds. I also want some slightly more dual purposed breeds, I was considering Red Rangers for that and was wondering if anyone here had experience with that breed? I would also like a Bantam (for more of a pet, the eggs from this one I will likely use as part of my cat's raw diet I am planning out since he has food sensitivities and not human consumption). I know Brahmas come as bantams and would be over the moon with one of those. Though I have adored Malaysian Seramas since I found out about them. Do you think mixing such a small hen with larger breeds would be a bad idea? I wouldn't mind going all Bantam since I will be in city limits though Biggers birds are appealing as well.

    Either way I'm looking for good suggestions for white layers, brown layers, and green/blue layers? High production is not a major concern and average broodiness is appealing as well so I can just have the chicken raise any future hatching eggs instead of babysitting them myself.

    And any pros/cons of Red Rangers if people have experience with them. Also I live in Iowa where winters are usually nuts but was fairly mild this year and summers can be pretty warm. So something that does decent in both kinds of weather is nice. I'm still getting Brahma regardless as I just adore them and will just have to make sure they are comfortable during summer time.
     
  2. Brahmachicken240

    Brahmachicken240 Crowing

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    White egg layer: leghorn
    Brown egg layer: Brahma
    Blue egg layer: cream legbar
    Green egg layer: Olive egger.

    I’m Brahma obsessed, I breed them.
    They’re very quiet and easy to tame, they’re gentle giants. :)
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  3. ScarletHarvest

    ScarletHarvest In the Brooder

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    @Brahmachicken240 I've seen your other posts! You have some gorgeous chickens! I've heard leghorn temperaments can vary from friendly to not so friendly?
     
    Brahmachicken240 likes this.
  4. Brahmachicken240

    Brahmachicken240 Crowing

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    Mine have all been very friendly. They’re a very shy breed. But they can be quite mean to other hens. They’re very feisty
     
  5. ScarletHarvest

    ScarletHarvest In the Brooder

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    Ah, see since I plan on getting those Itty bitty seramas I'm worried they may bully the poor things to death
     
    Brahmachicken240 likes this.
  6. SueT

    SueT Free Ranging

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    For white layers may I suggest Appenzeller Spitzhaubens, they are the national bird of Switzerland, so do well in cold winters--they are friendly, smart and very cute. Many hatcheries carry them at least the silver spangled. They are smaller than my standard sized chickens, but not bantams, eggs are a little smaller as well. They are good layers tho. I have leghorns and they are more flighty and standoffish than any of my other breeds, but very self sufficient.
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    Last edited: Jan 12, 2019
  7. Callender Girl

    Callender Girl Songster

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    ScarletHarvest, my fellow Iowan, sounds like you have some fun decisions to make. I always look at weather-hardiness because we do have such weird extremes here. Although, I am happy to say that today's crappy snowfall is all hitting further south -- for once. Up here in Webster County, we usually get the worst of winter's everything.

    One of my friends in southern Iowa had Brahmas with no more weather issues than any other breed he had.

    Since you love the feathered feet of the Brahmas, you might consider Salmon Faverolles. They also have feathered feet, adorable muffed faces and are docile and friendly. They lay a very light brownish, maybe cream-colored egg, and one of my girls is continuing to lay this winter (her sister is on hiatus, I guess). Weather hasn't been an issue for them; when it's really windy and cold, they just stay in the coop.

    My flock includes Orpington, Sapphire Gem, Wyandotte, Cochin Bantam (adorable -- especially the frizzle) and the only Iowa-developed breed, Iowa Blues. Of those, the only one I'm not in love with are the Blues. We have personality conflicts.
     
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  8. Acre4Me

    Acre4Me Songster

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    Our experience with our egg layers:

    We had dark brown Leghorns. Skittish and noisy, not friendly (did not want human contact). We got rid of them (sold to another family) as we did not enjoy them.

    We have 2 EE. Nice, quiet, quirky personalities. Lay 2different shades of green eggs. One likes human interaction, the other tolerates it. Varying feather coloration, so visually interesting.

    We have 1 silver laced Wyandotte. Sassy, a bit talkative. Tolerant of human interaction. Pretty feathering. Pea comb? It’s small so good for cold weather.

    Black australorp. Friendly, and like human interaction. My tween gets some of them to jump for fresh greens (kinda like a dog will jump for a treat). One of our three goes broody, has raised chicks (we bought chicks from a hatchery), and did an awesome job! Nice size, dual breed.

    Barred Plymouth rocks. Good overall. Lay well, tolerate human interaction, curious, fairly quiet.

    Black Jersey Giant. Docile and quiet. However, don’t recommend in your situation unless you want a really big chicken. Eat more feed overall, but get along with other flock members, and reliable egg layer. Tolerates human interaction.
     
  9. SueT

    SueT Free Ranging

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    I agree with this. My brown leghorns are not friendly either. I got them because they are supposed to be good free ranging, good at evading predators. If you want chickens that interact with you and love attention, I would not recommend leghorns. There are other white egg layers, as I mentioned, such Spitzhaubens, in post #6. Also look into Hamburgs and Polish for white eggs.
     
    Acre4Me likes this.

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