best dual purpose breed for raising chicks

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by Bucky182, Jun 25, 2010.

  1. Bucky182

    Bucky182 Songster

    Dec 1, 2009
    I am looking to get some hens that will sit some eggs. I have read that brahma's, New Hampshires, and EE are good setters. Does anyone have any experience with a good DP breed that will go broody? I tried buff orphaningtons with no luck either at broody or good egg laying. Did have a red sexling who went broody go figure??

    Any suggestions would be appreciated. I am looking to get 5-10 hens primarily for broodiness.

    Also, how long do you keep the hen and peeps from the rest of the flock before you introduce them into the flock without the other hens hurting them? Or will they?

  2. Happy Chooks

    Happy Chooks Moderator Staff Member

    Jul 9, 2009
    Northern CA
    My Coop
    Orpingtons are supposed to be great broodies, but you need to get them from a breeder. At most hatcheries, broodiness has been bred out of them for better egg laying.

    Other breeds that are supposed to be great broodies. (some dual some not)

    Pure Ameraucana's (not the same as EE's)

    ETA: I hatched 5 pullets that were Blue/Splash Orps for broodies, but unfortunately, I lost all but 1 to a predator attack.
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 25, 2010
  3. HorseFeatherz NV

    HorseFeatherz NV Eggink Chickens

    For me, I have a mixed flock at this point and time - my best broodies are my Cochins and Orpingtons. My Cochins are hatchery stock right now - both standard and bantam. My orps, I have some a hatchery girl who just went broody last week (she is a year old) and I have breeder orps - splash and blue old enough now - who also go broody.

    My Cochins I would not say are good layers, but my Orps, when not setting are good layers.

    You will not get a fantastic layer and a great broody together. Brooding takes away from your egg production - for a minimum of 6 weeks that girl is not going to lay and some of mine take off laying for up to 10 weeks.

    I do have EEs and none have any interest in being broody. I am crossing my EEs with a nice breeder Orp roo and I am hoping the Orp will infuse them with the broody gene [​IMG]
    Last edited: Jun 25, 2010
  4. gryeyes

    gryeyes Covered in Pet Hair & Feathers

  5. pkw

    pkw Songster

    May 14, 2010
    North Edwards, CA
    A good friend of mine has RIR and Turkens. Both breeds goes broody on her especially the turkens
  6. SmittenChicken

    SmittenChicken Songster

    Apr 23, 2010
    Have you considered a Sussex? I'm on my first batch of pullets and so I really don't know much about broodies, but I've heard that Sussex go broody often and are very good mothers (just looked at the Henderson's chart and it confirmed this). My two Speckled Sussex are still a little too young to lay but are some of my favorite birds - very sweet and inquisitive, and one of them is a total lap chicken. They're big beautiful birds and should have good egg production through the winter, too.

    Any SS owners that can confirm/deny this? I'm really curious myself.
  7. Mandy1296

    Mandy1296 Chirping

    Jul 16, 2009
    Jasper Georgia
    My RIR hen is the best broody I have. I had been picking up eggs every day for a couple months after one of her hatches - she seen me go down in the evening and take a look ( I usually try to see how many in each nest box - do my nightly chores then pick them up on the way in) and she came running down and was sitting on her 1 egg. Wouldn't budge either - so I gave her the rest of the days eggs - and about 20 days later - more chicks!! My brahmas have no interest at all...

  8. steward

    steward In the Brooder

    May 10, 2009
    I waited 4 years with a mixed flock of EE, wyandottes,production reds,austrolorps and most recently welsummers and barred rocks. Now finally 1 of my year old austrolorps and then 1 of the year old barred rocks went broody for me,...after buying an incubator and hatching some shipped eggs:rolleyes:.
  9. Bucky182

    Bucky182 Songster

    Dec 1, 2009
  10. Beekissed

    Beekissed Free Ranging

    I'm not sure that there is any one breed that will fulfill your needs. This is something one has to cull for to get the traits you desire in your flock. I have a NHR, a WR and an Aussie that go broody and are all great egg layers but my other birds of these breeds show no inclination for broodiness.

    I would imagine it would take years of observation and culling to retain good DP broodies, especially to accumulate 10 of them. I cull for laying, hardiness and broodiness but broodiness hasn't been my most important priority, though right up there. With time, one could definitely develop a more broody flock....then see how hard it is to get them to stop! [​IMG] [​IMG]

    I think the perfect flock includes 3-4 broodies and several that do not ever go broody. Chicks AND eggs are the goal, I'm thinking.

    For re-introducing broods back into the flock, you can pen them where the flock can see them but not get to them for a few days and even up to a week, the longer the better. Then just observe them when you make the merge....the mother should be able to discourage all nosey hens intent on inspecting or pecking the new babes. If she is getting ganged up on, just stop that kind of action. It shouldn't take more than a day for things to be normal after using these methods.

    I generally wait for 2 weeks before joining families with the flock. Of course, mine free range at all times, so this all may be different in a penned environment.

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