Good, quiet breeds for a beginner?

Discussion in 'General breed discussions & FAQ' started by KDOGG331, Dec 29, 2014.

  1. Barred Rock

    5 vote(s)
    19.2%
  2. Black Australorp

    10 vote(s)
    38.5%
  3. Buff Orpington

    12 vote(s)
    46.2%
  4. New Hampshire Red

    1 vote(s)
    3.8%
  5. Rhode Island Red

    4 vote(s)
    15.4%
  6. All of the above

    3 vote(s)
    11.5%
  7. Other (please comment)

    8 vote(s)
    30.8%
Multiple votes are allowed.
  1. KDOGG331

    KDOGG331 Chicken Obsessed

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    I know I just made a post (about a good coop size and design, located here: https://www.backyardchickens.com/t/944000/what-size-coop-would-you-suggest) but I need help with this too so I figured I'd also make a post on this.

    I'm hoping to get chicks this upcoming spring, preferably 10-15 but possibly only like 5 (parents -_-), and I'd like breed suggestions.

    We have about 3 acres but most of it is woods and we're set back with a huge yard, though there is one road behind us and so we do have one neighbor right on top of us and several others close, so preferably they would be able to stay in the yard. That one isn't a HUGE issue though because we are planning on possibly fencing in the yard for the dog anyways.

    Another thing though is because of that, I'm hoping that they would be relatively quiet, especially since we already have a dog that's been barking for almost 3 years straight xD

    I know that chickens aren't necessarily SUPER noisy (at least I don't think) anyways but I also don't want them to be super loud or obnoxious and making noise all day and night or any noises the neighbors can hear. Again, I know they're not super noisy anyways and I know they're not silent so therefore, some clucking here or there is fine, or maybe even enjoyable, but I don't want to be bugging neighbors. (though hopefully with free eggs, they'll be alright with it. xD)

    That's another reason I DON'T want roosters. We're allowed to have them here, being a "right to farm" community and all, but, again, don't want to bug the neighbors. Unless it was a super quiet roo. But even then, the thought of eating a potentially fertilized egg or baby chick really bugs me, even though I know it can't develop if I collect daily. So. No roos for me.

    I want, or rather NEED, good layers, as that is the main reason we would be getting them and a huge factor in convincing my parents, but, being the animal lover I am, I also want them to be pets so they would preferably also be friendly. They don't have to be total love bugs or obsessed with me (though it would be nice xD) but they do need to not run/fly away and/or make a big ruckus anytime I go near them and they would hopefully at least tolerate some handling and scratching and hopefully even come when called. Sooo... I guess I DO want them to be cuddly love bugs after all. xD

    Being from Massachusetts, they also need to be able to tolerate cold and heat, though with the winter we're having so far, I may as well have naked neck birds. xD

    The breeds that I am currently considering and will probably end up with are as follows: Buff Orpington, Rhode Island Red, New Hampshire Red, Barred Rock, and Black Australorp. I had considered some of the Sex Links/production breeds or rarer breeds but I've heard the production birds have a lot of health issues and the rarer ones seem to be a lot more expensive and I've decided they can wait till I have more experience.

    I really love the looks and stories of those breeds but if you know of any others, please do feel free to suggest them.

    The one thing I am concerned about though is while I do want Rocks, I've seen A LOT of stories of them beating up on BOs so I almost think I shouldn't get them. From what I've read, they're not -aggressive-, just really bossy. But it still makes me really nervous. So much so that I almost think I shouldn't get them. But I hear they're great layers and, being a New England breed, they're hardy. Plus, since we can't get a roo, having a hen like that might be good, as I've heard a lot of them act like roos and protect/warn against predators, etc. and, from what I hear, they're not aggressive to people, just bossy to hens (though some do say they're more flighty than the others), so I'm really on the fence about them.

    I like the idea of having a docile, calm flock but I'm also not sure I want all "Golden Retrievers" of the chicken world, I like some personality too, so I really don't know.

    I was hoping to get at least 2 of each breed so they wouldn't be left out or just one of each breed so they're all different and have no like friends they can buddy up with to pick on different looking ones, but I don't know.

    If you have an suggestions on breeds, whether it's these or others, have any personal stories with breeds, think these are good or bad for me for one reason or another, have different experiences with roos, etc., etc., please do share!!!!
     
    Last edited: Dec 29, 2014
  2. Michael OShay

    Michael OShay Chicken Obsessed

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    I've had every breed on your list, and for a beginner, I would recommend either Black Australorps or Buff Orpingtons as they are the calmest and most gentle birds on your list. If eggs are a priority, Black Australorps are the best layers on your list.
     
  3. KDOGG331

    KDOGG331 Chicken Obsessed

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    Thanks for the info :)

    I'm glad you mentioned Black Australorps being good too because when I was first looking into chickens, both a few years ago and last year, I had never really considered them that much, or even NHR's or BO's for that matter, and just always thought I wanted RIR's and BR's and that was it but then I started looking into other breeds more and realized how great they seemed so it's good to know they are.

    I think I'll probably end up with all BO's and BA's, though my dad keeps saying he wants RIR's. Maybe we could get one or two or compromise on NHR.

    I've heard some people say they're (RIR) kind of mean though, do you find that to be true? Maybe that was just with roos
     
  4. keesmom

    keesmom Overrun With Chickens

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    Try a variety. If you don't like them sell them off. Orpingtons, Rocks (any color), and Austrolorps seem to be common favorites. I have had black sex links, and all of them lived very long lives. A small sample, but enough to show all hybrids do not have health issues. If you would like an egg variety get some Easter Eggers and Leghorns to add to the mix.
     
  5. ThePRfan

    ThePRfan Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have had Production Reds.Very docile,great egg layers.The only time my hens stopped laying si a molting.
    The RIR,another.docile great layer.
     
  6. KDOGG331

    KDOGG331 Chicken Obsessed

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    That's a good idea too, although I've heard you're not supposed to introduce adult birds to each other? But I'm somebody could find something to do with them. Those breeds do seem to be popular so I'm sure there's a reason. Do you think that the Barred variety of Rocks tend to be more bossy than other varieties or are they all about the same? And really? well that's good :) I think the issue I had heard with them though was maybe egg binding? Or something like that. Forget the formal name, if there is one. That's a good idea, I might consider adding those too :)
     
  7. Michael OShay

    Michael OShay Chicken Obsessed

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    You're welcome. I've had some aggressive RIRs over the years, which is the main reason why although they are excellent layers, I don't have any in my flock anymore. The RIR roosters can especially be aggressive.
     
  8. KDOGG331

    KDOGG331 Chicken Obsessed

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    Thanks for the info :)

    I'm torn now because some people say other breeds are calmer and others say these guys are calm xD

    I've heard the Production Reds (are they the same as the New Hampshire Reds?) are gentler than RIRs though, do you find that to be true?
     
  9. KDOGG331

    KDOGG331 Chicken Obsessed

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    Hmm, that's interesting. I certainly don't want a mean bird!

    Perhaps I could just get one or two to try it and see and then if it turns out to be mean, rehome it or eat it?
     
  10. Michael OShay

    Michael OShay Chicken Obsessed

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    Production Reds are hybrids produced by crossing two red gene parents (any combination of RIR, HNR, or Production Reds). They are not bred for conformity to a physical standard as true breeds are (although they will all have red feathering), but rather for egg production. Because they are hybrids, their personalities can vary a good deal. I've had some really aggressive Production Reds and some that are very friendly, calm, and gentle.
     

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