Beginning flock?

AlabamaBelle

In the Brooder
7 Years
Nov 18, 2012
19
1
24
North Alabama
I'll be getting my first chicks in the spring, after the coops built and the weathers warmed. So I'm hoping to get some help with the breeds!

I'm shooting for 15ish chicks to start. For the most part, I want egg layers (brown eggs), though a few meat birds would be good. I've been looking at Rhode Island Reds, but I'd like a bit of variety thrown in :) And my grandma is insisting she wants one as a pet, like she used to have when she was young, so one friendly personalitied bird would be great too. And maaaybe one rooster.

And, I need them to be able to stand the heat and the cold, because I live on a mountain in Alabama, which means 100+ degrees in the summer and 14- in the winter.

Any and all suggestions would be greatly appreciated :)
 
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Y N dottes

Songster
7 Years
Sep 1, 2012
1,121
62
143
South Central WI
Rhode island reds are a great breed for what u want, but i also like to have a flock of mixed breeds....

Soome good brown egg laying breeds are:
Rhode islnd reds
Black australorps
orpingtons
wyandottes
barred plymouth rocks (one of my favs)
and if u want some color in the egg basket, easter eggers or ameraucanas lay blue/green eggs

some friendly breeds:
Silkies
cochins
belgian d'uccles

the most coomon meat birds are Cornish crosses....often a cross between a cornish and white rock
 

ellie32526

Songster
7 Years
Oct 21, 2012
423
21
103
North Texas
I'm looking for the same thing. You can look on this page
https://www.backyardchickens.com/products/category/chicken-breeds

I'm looking at Black Australorps, Buff Orpingtons, Speckled Sussex, Leghorns, Plymouth Barred Rocks, Wyandottes, Rhode Island Reds, Dominiques, and Black Minorcas. Those are the best layers I have found. I don't know if I can eat my pet chickens after I have named them, but eggs would be different.
 

AlabamaBelle

In the Brooder
7 Years
Nov 18, 2012
19
1
24
North Alabama
So, I'm thinking.....


4 Black Sumatras (I know, they aren't brown egg layers, but they're so beautiful!)
3 Light Brahma
2 Rhode Island Red (or Plymouth Rock.. Don't know which is better. Alternately, I might just get 5 Sumatras and 4 Brahmas)
1 Silkie (for their friendlieness and cuteness!)

I've brought the total down from 15 to 10, which I think will be better for my first time caring for chickens. Well, my first time caring for chickens alone. My grandma worked at a chicken farm when I was little, and I used to help her with that. But that's off topic lol.

And I've decided not to use any for meat. I could do it, I just don't see a reason too. Maybe I'll expand to include some CX later.

Thoughts??
 

mtnviewfarms

Songster
9 Years
Jan 30, 2011
319
18
156
North GA Mountains - Ellijay
Never had RI Reds but I would highly recommend some Barred Plymouth Rocks - good amount
of large brown eggs - lay through the winter w/o added light in coop.

Black Australorps - same as above - some of the eggs I get from my 9 Aussies are even extra large.

Welsummers are gorgeous birds - The Roos are absolute flock 'eye candy' - Kellog's Corn Flake
Roo was a Welsummer. The pullets lay large dark terra cotta colored eggs. Mine don't lay very
often in winter.

Not brown egg layers but would also highly recommend them for their cute personalities and they
look and move like tiny eagles and lay spectacular med to large blue eggs - Ameraucanas.

Easter Eggers are also favorites of mine as they lay multicolored eggs.

For your Mom as a Pet Chicken I recommend the very calm and friendly Buff Orpington.
 

Y N dottes

Songster
7 Years
Sep 1, 2012
1,121
62
143
South Central WI
Sumatras are a beautiful breed and they are weather hardy, but their egg production isnt as high as some of the others, and they dont like being in closed places.....just a heads up. They may turn out to be a great for u though, so i'm not trying to scare u away from ur desicion.
Brahmas are a nice breed too, a very large and heavy breed. great coloring and consistant layers of brown eggs.
I would keep your options open though.....once u get a few different breeds, you will want to get more, lol
 

AlabamaBelle

In the Brooder
7 Years
Nov 18, 2012
19
1
24
North Alabama
Sumatras are a beautiful breed and they are weather hardy, but their egg production isnt as high as some of the others, and they dont like being in closed places.....just a heads up. They may turn out to be a great for u though, so i'm not trying to scare u away from ur desicion.
Brahmas are a nice breed too, a very large and heavy breed. great coloring and consistant layers of brown eggs.
I would keep your options open though.....once u get a few different breeds, you will want to get more, lol

Haha, no worries there. Definitely going to expand my flock. It's actually why I dropped the original number down to 10, so I could bring home more when I figure out what I like and have a bit of experience :)
 

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