Breed Help :)

Discussion in 'Pictures & Stories of My Chickens' started by Morgan7782, Jun 5, 2010.

  1. Morgan7782

    Morgan7782 Dense Egg Goo

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    Mar 22, 2010
    Sacramento CA
    I need help picking a breed of chicken to get. I have used the selection tool quite a few times but it keeps coming up with my favorite choices, can't narrow it any further down. So..

    What I am looking for:

    A good temperment with less aggresive/flighty tendencies, but can do well in a mixed flock (EE's and Barred Rock)
    Good egg production, Any color eggs EXCEPT white, and would like medium or larger. (4+ a week at least *I know this depends on indavidual birds, but let me know what your breed suggestion laying rate averages.
    Different looks/appearences. I want to be able to tell them apart so I have to steer clear of Barred Rocks, and already getting some EE's.
    I live in Northern California, heat is more of a bother then cold winters.


    Options:

    Rhode Island Red
    New Hampshire Red
    Silver Laced Wyandottes
    Light Brahma

    I will be getting these chicks from the feed store and before that they come from Belt Hatchery. The feed store carries the following breeds, I am not too familiar with all breeds so if there is one I should look into please let me know.

    White Leghorn
    Buff Orpington
    Delawares
    Black Australorp

    Thanks for any and all advice [​IMG]
     
  2. Tiramisu

    Tiramisu Got Mutts

    May 3, 2008
    Milan PA
    I only have 2 hens, had 3. I have a golden laced wyandotte, not a silver, but she is very docile and lays well. I had a buff orpington and I did not like her so much [​IMG] I thought when I got that breed it would be the nicest...but it wasnt. She was noisy and didn't like to be picked up, she made it hard to put her up at night, she layed well like the others though. My australorp is the friendliest and she layed the biggest eggs out of them.
    They layed well and they were never aggressive towards each other.
     
  3. Thundrr-Chicken

    Thundrr-Chicken Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 20, 2010
    Dover, Ohio
    mine arent laying eggs yet... but... i have buff orpingtons... love their color as they grow... and i have black australorps... love the way the black feathers give a green look when they get to be older too... both of those breeds are supposed to be good egg layers... good dual purpose breeds... i have others that you mentioned.... but so far the buffs are my favorite i think
     
  4. newlyweds

    newlyweds Pearl of the Prairie

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    Mar 12, 2010
    Southeast Texas
    I would highly recommend any plymouth rocks, barred, white, partridge. They are great layers and very friendly birds, I just love mine. I also love my Buff orpington, Black Australorp and Silver Laced Wyandotte. I think if you stick with those breeds and some EE's you will be set with a colorful, friendly and great bunch of egg layers.
     
  5. Hens4Fun

    Hens4Fun Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Nov 18, 2009
    Sacramento, California
    This was my experience with my first and current flocks (Southern California also more heat than cold):

    Never broody [​IMG]:
    Rhode Island Reds: wonderful birds that lay every day. All of mine have been VERY social.
    New Hampshire Red: gorgeous bird..laid regularly...molted something awful poor thing...mine wasn't very social
    Partridge Rock (um, I think): beautiful bird...followed me EVERYwhere and never stopped talking hahaha... laid daily
    Silver Laced Wyandotte: a really sweet bird that kept to herself, but liked to nap on my ankles. Laid an egg daily.
    Barred Rocks: great layers, never broody ... loved to take a nap on my legs, but didnt want me to pet them
    EEs: very nice birds that lay regularly, but not daily. Love to sit on my lap and nap.

    The broodies I've had [​IMG]:
    White cochin: beautiful fluffy bird .. but broody... lays regularly, but not daily
    Silkies: sweet & pretty good layers when not broody... but jeeez, way too broody
    Black Australorp: really liked her, but broody a TON so fewer eggs in the end ... mine was a loner

    You said no white eggs ... but I LOVE my Houdan. Great personality. Lays daily. My only white egger. So far never broody.

    If I ever start over again ... I will not get the broody varieties. They just take up space for weeks at a time and I worry about food and water when it's hot. If I wanted to hatch that would be one thing, but I just want the eggs. So broody is kind of a pain.
     
  6. Morgan7782

    Morgan7782 Dense Egg Goo

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    Mar 22, 2010
    Sacramento CA
    Thank you so much for all your experiences! My original plan was to get 3 EE and 3 SLW, but I keep hearing hatchery SLW are not what I am looking for. Did you get your SLW from a hatchery Hens4Fun? Or breeder? I think I may stick with my original plan and see how it goes. I am subject to what my feed store carries, but have had wonderful luck with this paticular store in the past with chicks. Thanks again for all the information! I am happy to read it and it helped me realize to stick with the original idea. Once I get more property and can have more then a small number of hens I would love to expand and get a few Australops and RIR.

    [​IMG] I will be getting my new chicks on June 17th, and my current flock of two pullets will be 11 or 12 weeks old. Hopefully it won't be a bad experience when I finally integrate them. The older bunch will be 12 weeks OLDER then the new girls. [​IMG] Now I will start researching integrating how-to's.
     
  7. Hens4Fun

    Hens4Fun Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Nov 18, 2009
    Sacramento, California
    I got my SLW from a feed store, so hatchery I"m sure. She was a GREAT hen. She outlived all of the ones I got at the same time (the Barred Rocks and the RIR's) and was still laying almost daily at age 3 when I gave my older hens to people who wanted them in their yard but didn't so much want eggs. Gosh, she was sooo pretty too. Maybe she wasn't a 'show hen' and I don't know the other objection to hatchery chicks, but I really liked her and if the feed store had had SLW's when I bought my current flock I would have gotten 2 more for sure.
    [​IMG]

    Good luck with the integration. I added 3 when 6 of them were six months old several years back and they got along for the most part, but the 3 were never truly accepted. Definitely bottom of the pecking order and roamed the yard seperate from the others, pushed aside for treats and never got to roost on the upper roosts. Chickens are so hierarchical! [​IMG] I did like some people suggested and had them side by side but separated by fencing for quite a while before they were "together". I never saw any major fights after integrated.

    Have fun!
     
  8. Morgan7782

    Morgan7782 Dense Egg Goo

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    Mar 22, 2010
    Sacramento CA
    Thank you for the wonderful picture! Do you by chance have any pictures of her as a chick? I am definately doing SLW and EE, and am glad to hear good hatchery experiences. I think people who breed them have high standards because they know what to look for. I am not too picky, and am glad to see such a beautiful hatchery SLW. Thank you! [​IMG]

    I will have a teenage coop and run for the younger group as the older duo adjust in their new and improved coop. Runs will be side by side and my older gals free range throughout the day. Today I saw my Barred Rock dust bathe for the first time ever! It was so cute, and I am surprised they don't get dirt in their eyes! Chickens are great and I am so glad to have expanded my knowlage to different breeds. Thank you thank you thank you all for responding! It is wonderful hearing different experiences and stories.
     
  9. Hens4Fun

    Hens4Fun Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Nov 18, 2009
    Sacramento, California
    [​IMG]
    Good lord, I HOPE I have the right chick! I know the teenager picture was the SLW and I'm reasonably sure this was her as a chick as well because the other two chicks at the time were both barred rocks and were considerably darker chicks. (Much better now at renaming my files!)

    Hey, sounds like you are doing everything right to me for the integration. [​IMG] It definitely helped, I think that mine were free ranging at the time as well because there was so much space for everyone. But I remember the older ones standing at the fence and making such a racket at the young ones .... hahahaha, so territorial!
     
  10. Of those my favorites are Rhode Island Reds and Black Aussies [​IMG]
     

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