heritage RIR for a first timer?


In the Brooder
8 Years
Nov 7, 2011
NE Mississippi
not to bang on the hatcheries, but i wanted to buy some chickens local....and i've come across a guy locally that has some heritage RIR eggs for sale. i have access to an incubator and i was wondering if you guys thought this would be a good one for a first timer?

im wanting the birds mostly for eggs for my family of 5 and occasionally for meat, as well.

im thinking of getting 2-dozen eggs and eventually culling down to 8-12 hens and 2 roosters. im hoping i will have enough room for 2 roosters to coexist, but if not, i will put one in a seperate pen by himself.

btw, im hoping to later add some barred rocks to my flock.
depending on how good your incubator is, you might need more than a 2 dozen eggs to achieve the results you are hoping for, and in my experiences the heritage RIR dont lay as well as the commercial ones and eat alot of feed
Okay, I think we're getting RIR's from average stock confused with heritage RIR's

Which begs the question, how much is being asked for the eggs? How do you know these are true, good quality RIR's and not average birds? Or are we even talking about the ALBC or origin definition of the RIR?

The question is, how much does it matter to you on how these RIR's look, weigh, and act in comparison to how much you pay for their eggs? The term heritage is widely used, from simply meaning it's an old American breed to meaning it's an old recognized breed that fits fairly well to the SOP, and its parents did too.

That aside, either production type RIR or heritage are both good birds to have, however production types are not recommended for dual purpose or for having around kids. Heritage type, at least, heritage in the definition from the ALBC, don't actually eat as much as people warn, but they do eat more than a production layer. They don't lay as much, but will lay over a longer period of time. Their temperament though is certainly more reliable, and they're more likely to go broody, which is a great thing for someone who wants to be self sufficient and cut back on the electric and/or feed bill

Sounds like you want non-hatchery, non-production stock, that's great, but be aware that there's a LOT of "breeders" out there who claim their stuff isn't hatchery type when it clearly is to the trained/experienced eye.
Illia, makes a good point. I was sold alot of eggs in the past from so-called heritage breed to only hatch out hybrids. I wasn't aware of anyone in Ms that had heritage rir's. Doesn't mean theres not, just never seen any. Of all the heritage breeds, I would pick the german line of nh on egg laying and looks. The good shepard ranchs barred rocks would be my choice when it comes to eating. I am also fond of the mohawk line of heritage rir's. I would be aware of the many who claim to have heritage when they really have production. Also, the production hatchery type are way to small to be a dual purpose bird.
Here's a good example of a heritage rir cockeral and a production pullet, sold to me from eggs that were suppose to be heritage. The heritage cockeral is also not a very good type with many defects in this line.
Take a real good look at the Delaware, good looking bird, & a very good meat & egg bird, once they start laying they are pretty regular.

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