I need help picking chicken breeds for my new flock. Any advice?*PICS*

Discussion in 'General breed discussions & FAQ' started by guesswhatchickenbutt, Mar 13, 2009.

  1. guesswhatchickenbutt

    guesswhatchickenbutt Songster

    Mar 5, 2009
    Central FL
    I've got a smallish coop that's ready to go for my new flock. I've raised ducks before in the past, but I'm about to be a first-time chicken owner. These will have to be secret chickens, because althought they're legal in our neck of the woods, our HOA says no chickens. (Here's my new coop if you want to see size - it's about 5 feet tall and about 6-7 feet long I think? https://www.backyardchickens.com/forum/viewtopic.php?id=144226) We live in FL so it's hot hot hot here...

    So... I thought that three birds would be a good number for a small flock.

    I need not-too-noisy and not-too-airborne.

    My primary reason for the hens is for eggs and also the enjoyment of our family (2 small boys - ages 3 and 5). I really want birds that will be friendly to the boys... I know temperament is individual, but I'm not going to purposely pick a bird that is known for a rough disposition.

    I'm considering the following birds:

    Americauna (might be a generic EE - the feed store said Americauna, but I read that sometimes it's an EE) - I like this for the pretty eggs.

    Buff Orpington - These just seem like sweet birds...and are pretty too.

    Barred Rock - A photo of a Barred Rock made me decide to get some secret urban chickens... so I feel like i oughta own one of these.

    RIR - I've heard they're good layers and friendly enough. This is the bird that I think I'll pass on for the above 3 types... maybe??? [​IMG]

    And I will admit to completely falling in love with those poofball disasters - the silkies. LOL. I can't get enough of them... I said I'd only get 3 birds and I'm sure adding a silkie to the mix would be too much and I've read she might get picked on.

    Any thoughts for me on what to choose? I mean I get that it's just personal preference, but I'm wondering if having 3 hens of 3 different breeds will work out - and if any of those breeds would be better for me?? And if adding a silkie is the dumbest idea I've had in a long time. Should I get 3 of the same breed? Or just randomly pick three breeds?

    Thanks in advance for any advice everyone!

    *******PICS ADDED OF NEW FLOCK*********** (um... I forget what page...
    Last edited: Apr 2, 2009
  2. Scratchn By

    Scratchn By Songster

    Nov 7, 2008
    East Texas
    Well, if you're only getting three... That leaves you with little choice.

    You want layers that are friendly and something poofy? Hmmm...

    I guess the roo is out of the question. Too noisy... Whatever you get you can always trim one wing's flight feathers and it won't fly about. Not that chickens do a lot of that. Mine don't.

    I have NHR (similiar to RIR) and they're pleasant birds. Barred rock not as pleasant. I've got Dom, similiar... Get you a little cochin hen. They're sweet as can be. Here's my little Ivory and some adopties.

  3. mtnhomechick

    mtnhomechick Songster

    Jun 27, 2008
    Mountain Home, AR
    Red Sex Link. Not too big......not noisy....huge eggs.......very friendly. Mine LOVE to be held.

    ETA.......I would say Autralorps or Buff O's but they're too big.
    Last edited: Mar 13, 2009
  4. Year of the Rooster

    Year of the Rooster Sebright Savvy

    Jun 27, 2008
    West Central Ohio
    My Australorp isn't THAT big. She is the heaviest of out of my RIR, EE, and BR, but generally they are all almost the same size.
  5. mtnhomechick

    mtnhomechick Songster

    Jun 27, 2008
    Mountain Home, AR
    Quote:I have RSL, WLH, BLH,RIR, EE, BO, WR and BR. My BA's and BO's are the biggest. They are wonderful and I love them. But the RSL lay by FAR the biggest egg, are super friendly and on the smallish side. I love them all........but for me space is not an issue.
  6. stormylady

    stormylady Songster

    Dec 27, 2008
    I was going to suggest Buff Orps and Australorpes. But the Ameraucanas are ok some are nicer than others i think at least in my group.
    I have a Barred Rock but she is only 3 wks old. She is friendly but thats all I tell you about her so far. what about some cochin Bantams. If it were me I would go with the BOs and the Australorpes. [​IMG] Sandy
    Have fun with your chickies![​IMG]
  7. barnwife

    barnwife Songster

    Feb 21, 2009
    central Texas
    I would ditto the cochin. They come in frizzle (the feathers groe in backwards, making them look ruffled by the wind always), bantam (smaller) and standard, in any color pattern you can make up.

    They are widely known and long respected as a family pet bird. Mine are quiet (even my roo...he only crows for 15-30 minutes, then clucks a little very softly throughout the day)
    BUT, my Fluffy is an exceptoinal roo. He broods my chicks!!

    BUT cochins are easily held, and loved, can be confined without problems like other chickens do (feather plucking, picking)

    AND they are fluffy!

    Silkies are also a good choice...quiet, friendly, but a little less so than cochins. mine are a little stand-offish.

    My ameraucanas form the feed store CONSTANTLY fly over the 5 ft high fence and annoy my neighbor's dog. Ditto with my barred rock. The br are NOISY...getting into "hen pecking" contests all day, even while they are getting ready to roost!! This is not just b/c they are cooped up, they free-range for nearly 10 hours daily.

    At least my ee/ameraucana arent TOO loud. Compared to the cochin, they are loud.

    Breeds to avoid like the plague (purely from loudness and flightiness standards)
    Egyptian fayoumi
    ANY game breed
    blue andalusians
    most asian breeds

    Breeds to maybe think about a little more

    speckled sussex
    turken (naked neck)

    the turken and dorking both lay "tinted" eggs...not as strong in color as ameraucanas, but much more tame for sure!

    I hope this helps!

    p.s. guard/fence any flowers or veggies you don't want them to eat if they wander your yard!
  8. Omniskies

    Omniskies Songster

    Mar 7, 2008
    Why not make it easy on yourself? You're only getting three chickens and you've narrowed it down to three breeds (if we drop the Rhode Island Red). Get a Buff Orpington, Ameraucana/Easter Egger, and a Barred Rock.

    You know you'll get more of everything later. You may as well try out one of each of the breeds you want, then take a million recommendations after that [​IMG]
  9. guesswhatchickenbutt

    guesswhatchickenbutt Songster

    Mar 5, 2009
    Central FL
    So if I got the BO, BR and EE (or Americauna - whatever they give me) would it be a DUMB idea to add a silkie too? It would, right? Dumb idea... I guess there's a silly part of me that wants a funny-looking fluffball too, but I guess I should just get 3 hens like I planned. My fear is that if down the road I think adding another hen would be fun, I'd already have an established flock and then adding a little silkie would be impossible.... I can only get the hens available locally since I must have girls and only want one of each breed, so maybe they won't even get get silkies in and my decision will be made. I have 3 small feed stores to choose from (and TSC, but I don't want to buy from them). Between the 3 small feed stores, there's a pretty good selection for me... One guy is getting in some polish, but I fear they'll be picked on too.


    I don't even have the hens yet and I'm already fantasizing about getting 900 different breeds... but since they're covert I need to keep the numbers very low - and on the down-low - LOL.

    thanks for the advice.
  10. colby318

    colby318 got 'dottes?

    Jul 14, 2008
    Stamping Ground, KY
    I would say to drop the BO. My brother in law's Orps suffer a bit in the muggy heat here in Kentucky. Maybe if your run was well shaded.

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by: