kiddo friendly

fullerfamfarm

In the Brooder
May 18, 2015
31
6
41
Texas
hello all
I am in the planning stages of our very first flock and wondering what breeds would be considered kiddo friendly. I have five little people who are all very excited about the future additions to our farm. They are good and well behaved so I know they will be well mannered around the birds but I also want to stack the deck in our favor. I am currently considering both buff and barred rocks as well as black giants.
any thoughts on breeds? or how to socialize them?
blessings,
Katie
 

ChickenMammX4

Songster
Mar 17, 2015
1,044
243
161
SW Ohio
Our Buff Orpingtons are very gentle with our grandkids. The Black Sex Links are much rougher (not aggressive) when eating from our hands for instance, which scare the kids. The Australorp is gentle as well.

Those are the only breeds I have any experience with.
 

shortlid

Chirping
May 17, 2015
47
1
54
Derry, NH
I have a 7 yo boy and 5 yo girl. I am in New Hampshire so I got five New Hampshire Red chicks. The chicks are two weeks old the kids and I try to handle them as mucj as possible. Hopfully these NH Reds are good with kids.
 

cityfarmer12

Songster
5 Years
Oct 18, 2014
1,249
118
181
Missouri
Some breeds i would suggest are:
Cochins: These are some of the most lovable birds ever. I have never had a mean or flighty one. They are big, fluffy, gentle, and funny. The roosters are just as nice as the hens. Their downside is they tend to get dirtier than clean legged breeds, and if your purpose is high egg production, they are not the best layers. I use mine for pets and incubating eggs (they are great moms).

Brahmas: Another one of my favorite breeds, these guys are also quite friendly, gente, and funny. They are not as floppy and cuddly as the cochins, but they are nice. most of my roosters have been nice, though i have had a few mean ones. They are feather legged too, but not as much as the cochins. They are pretty good layers, though not commercial good.

Buff Orpingtons: These guys are great layers, and are very calm and friendly. Thy tend to be good with kids, and are steady, consistent layers. They are also fairy common and easy to find.

Black Australorps: These are really good layers and also calm and friendly. They are also common, and are pretty good size.

Wyandottes: These are great layers, friendly, lively, and come in all kinds of cool color patterns (silver, gold, blue/red laced ones are some of my favorites) and they sure add a lot to a flock.

Black Giants are not the best layers (they lay huge eggs, but not as many as some of the other breeds). They are very friendly and big.

Rocks are great layers, and usually pretty friendly, but sometimes they can be boisterous, obnoxious, and kinda mean. They are really pretty though.


To socialize them, hold them a lot when they are babies. The more they are held the more nice they will be.
 

howfunkyisurchicken

Crowing
9 Years
Apr 11, 2011
9,281
807
361
Tn
I have Rhode Island Reds, and they're pretty flighty things. I don't handle them often though.

I'd imagine you're looking for high-mid production with that many little ones :D How many chickens do you plan on having? Do you want breeds that are high production, or maybe breeds that'll hatch out eggs for you? Dual purpose breeds for eggs and meat? Bantams or standard sized birds?

Leghorns are friendly birds. They forage well and don't eat much. Top notch layers, of course. They come in both sizes.

Orpingtons and Wyandottes are nice birds. They come in a ton of neat colors and are dual purpose. When I raised them, they were pretty good layers and they went broody a lot. They also come in both sizes.

Cochins are lovely, fluffy birds that come in lots of colors too. They come in bantam or standard size. My standard Cochins were very large birds, okay layers and great mother hens. Silkies are great mommas too, they only come in bantam size. Mine are pretty good layers, but they all sit at some point.

Easter Eggers are fun. Mine aren't particularly friendly, but they aren't aggressive. They're best known for their blue and green eggs.

Game birds are great as well. I have bantams, and they're super friendly, tiny little chickens. Great layers and wonderful mothers. They're excellent foragers.


There are so many great breeds, it can be hard to choose (probably why I have a ton of chickens :D ).Feathersite is a good resource for researching breeds, they have lots of pictures and info on each breed. Good luck!
 

Talithahorse

Songster
8 Years
Mar 5, 2012
568
342
201
Hartselle, Al
My kids started with Silkies (when they were 3 and 7). We also love the barred rocks and Orphingtons. The kids favorite in the laying pen is an old barred rock hen (DD) and a little black sex linked (DS). She is very sweet and an excellent layer. Did not love the Brahmas (but we did have a large population of boys, so that probably made a difference). Didn't have any luck with the Wyndottes either (they were snooty and didn't play well with others). The kids still love the Silkies after all these year and I think their little eggs are very rich. For my choice I enjoy the Rocks (of all varieties) and my Dorkings.
 

Rivenwood

In the Brooder
May 18, 2015
21
4
26
Western Oregon
My Wyandotte was handled a lot as a chick which made her a very sweet, agreeable hen. She would let you pick her up and would hang out while she was carried around without complaint. Never once pecked at anybody. I miss her a lot.

I just got some young Salmon Faverolles and so far they've been super sweet, even the cockerel. They've been very gently eating out of my hand and seem to enjoy receiving attention, and watch/talk to me while I am working near their coop. I am really enjoying them and would have no problem with well-behaved kids handling them.

I have had three Plymouth/Barred Rock hens, and only one of them was what I would call a potentially kid-friendly bird. But I got the impression the people who abandoned the two lesser friendly hens with me never really bothered to socialize them or take very good care of any of their animals. So it may be with a better environment they would have been better birds.
 

Talithahorse

Songster
8 Years
Mar 5, 2012
568
342
201
Hartselle, Al
It's funny how people have totally different experiences with the different breeds, so probably if you buy them as chicks (I would stick with pullets if you can), let the kids play with them, carry them around, and socialize them, then you will probably have great chickens with the kids, whatever breed you choose. I did find that with young kids I found it easier to get two or more of the same breed, so that if one of them dies suddenly it was less likely to be the "beloved" princess, or fluffy, or other favorite (
wink.png
wink, wink)
 

shortlid

Chirping
May 17, 2015
47
1
54
Derry, NH
Just got two Dominique day old chicks Saturday to round out my backyard flock. Hope they do well with the kids. Already bossing the week old New Hampshire Reds around?
 

MANNA-PRO

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