jersey giants vs. orpingtons.


9 Years
Oct 15, 2010
Im 17 years old and Im just starting to breed chickens, and i need help choosing the right breed. I want good hardy layers that are good in the cold. broodiness isnt too important but some is good. What do your birds look like? anyone got pics?
I would like a big heavy breed, but what are some other good layers that are exotic? i already know about the RIR's and the sexlinks, and various ones but what are some others?
Thanks for the help everyone!


10 Years
Mar 22, 2010
I'm new to chickens too. So hopefully someone more experienced can help you out. I do have both Jersey Giants and Buff Orpingtons though. I have to say that mine are 22 weeks old and still have not laid an egg so if you are looking for quick egg layers these are probably not it. I live in ND so I wanted cold hardy to and though that these breeds would be the way to go, but then I read that the single comb breeds are more apt to get frost bite on their combs. So for that I think the Wyandottes might be a good option if it is really cold where you are. They have smaller flatter combs. I also think that Cochins would be a good option because of all their extra plummage on their legs.


9 Years
Oct 15, 2010
Ok thanks,
im not to concerned about early egg production,
I live in MI so i dont think its too cold where i live, and they will also have a large coop with lots of straw and warmth,
i wasnt to big on the cochins becouse of the leg plummage, im looking for one that doesnt have to have their legs washed often for show, my sister has silkies and she has to wash hers anytime it rains or they get muddy.
Ill look into the wyandottes though thanks

Does anyone else have an opinion of what would be a good breed? i wanna make sure i get the right one for me...

JenEric Farms

12 Years
Oct 31, 2007
Brahmas are a cold hardy breed, very friendly as well. They do have feathers on their legs, but not like a cochin or silkie. Much less.
Last edited:


10 Years
Nov 23, 2009
Deep In The Left Atrium Of TX
MI = Michigan... seems like it'd get pretty cold due to geography but maybe the great lakes help?

I've got the exact opposite things to worry on... Texas HEAT.

As to showing though, if I had to pick one I would NOT pick a white breed... devil of a time with dirt showing up.

But take a gander at Henderson's Breed Chart... good info there on a lot/all of the breeds.
Including cold hearty, broodiness, and whether they're good winter (less sun) layers or not.


ChowDown Silkie Farm
10 Years
Mar 5, 2009
Hornbeak, Tennessee
Production reds are cold hardy and lay nice large brown eggs nearly everyday. I have 1 and have been hatching her eggs lately trying to get more. She lays no matter the weather and her chicks are always beautiful. The only thing I can say that is bad about this breed is they eat like goats. She will eat anything and everything that doesn't try to eat her first. Her crop is so full by the end of the day it seems it will burst. It doesn't matter if she is free ranging or in the coop. She is still full by day's end. RIR's are also hardy eaters. EE's seem to be cold hardy but mine don't lay everyday and they are nice birds and don't eat as much as the Production reds. If your looking for a large bird the B/B/S and Lavender Orphingtons are pretty big. I know the blue roo I have is huge and I had a splash hen last year and she was huge also and they have good temperments. You don't want a mean rooster that is that big anyway. Jersey Giants are nice big birds and once start laying are pretty dependable and cold hardy.

We had an ice storm and the chicken coop was frozen shut and the tree limbs had fallen all over the coop and the branches that didn't break bent over from the weight of the ice and covered the coop. We had to break our way in the coop and once inside, they where fine. We where without electricity for 5 days which meant they didn't have heat and they didn't get as much as a dot of frostbite. I did have straw in the coop but that was all they had for warmth. They acted as if everything was fine and dandy. At that time I had Silver laced Wydonettes, Buff Orphington, Jersey Giant, Dominick (sp) and an EE.

Last year we had smaller birds, bantams and splash oprphington, EE and Production red. We had to put the smaller birds in smaller pens that where draft free with heat lamps during the coldest of the winter. This year we are more prepared for the winter. The cold hardy birds are in the big coop and we will cover the outside with tin and the inside with paper fiber insulation and they will still be able to go out into the runs. The smaller birds are in smaller pens with runs that will be covered with fiberglas sheeting so they still get light but no drafts. We can put heat lamps in the house part if necessary. We also have a tractor that we use for chicks that hatch in the winter. We put them outside in the tractor when they get most of their feathers. The tractor has a heat lamp also and a run and we cover it with a tarp.

Sugar Sand Farm

12 Years
Apr 24, 2007
North Florida
Ihave both Jersey giants and orpingtons. I find the giants to be good layers of very large brown eggs. They have very personalities and the roosters are not aggressive. My husband started with this breed as when he saw the size of the roosters he called them a mans breed lol here is a pic of some of my roosters they are show quality and have taken 2 Best of Breeds at shows this past year. My orpingtons did not start to lay well until they were 2 years old Both of these breeds are not hatchery birds so it may be different with them

here is a pic of some of the hens as well

edit to ad: we live in Florida so we deal more with heat but last year it was 14 degrees here for weeks and they did fine
Last edited:

New posts New threads Active threads

Top Bottom