I am looking to find out what breed of chickens mature to laying age quickest. I dont even know where to begin to search for that information. could some one help me with a PM or email with that info or a place I could locate it?
From what I've seen here from others and from my own experience the Sex-links are usually the first to start to lay. They often start around 15 to 16 weeks old and have laid earlier than that for some people.
a good 75% of my red stars started laying at 16 weeks and they were all laying within two weeks. Mostly laid all winter too. They are a smallish hen most of the- feed goes straight into eggs. Big brown eggs.
Personally, I wouldn't buy the Orpingtons if you want lot's of eggs. I studied about them online, and while they will still lay in winter even without extra light source, numerous sites said that they only lay between 100 - 160 eggs a year, where sex links lay around 300 per year. But it depends on what you are wanting the chickens for, I guess. I have some gold, black and red sex links. The gold and red sex links are the friendliest, and the red sex links are absolutely wonderful. They don't peck at anybody, just mind their own business, and are extremely sweet. All of my sex links lay very big eggs, even though they just started laying at the start of the new year.
the fastest i've had were Egyptian Fayoumis. mine started laying at 3 1/2 months, and my roo started to crow at just one month!!! I'm expecting to be getting some from Mc Murray in May, im excited to have some again!
My RIR took forever to start laying, but well worth it! My Red Sex Links are egg machines! I have one that has never missed even 1 day, all winter at 30 below in an unheated coop! The other one only quit for a couple of weeks at 20- 30 below. They started laying at about 18 weeks. Very smart friendly birds.