Longest living chicken breed?

CEO

Chirping
Jun 14, 2021
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Wondering what the longest living chicken breeds are and who lays most eggs out of them? I’ve got mostly red sexlinks and I’ve been told they don’t live long And is that true?
 

Show Sebright

Crowing
Apr 1, 2020
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Orlando FL
Deathlayers they lay until they die. And they are so pretty!!! When a bird dies depends on the care the birds gets and how many eggs they produce. Lace my silver laced sebright is spoiled and she lays 2-3 times a week. She is 8 years old!
Deathlayer is the first picture. Lace is molting right now and she is in the second.
 

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Folly's place

Enabler
Premium Feather Member
10 Years
Sep 13, 2011
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southern Michigan
Genetics, management, and avoiding predators all matter!
@troyer has Cubalayas, and I remember being told that some will live into their teens. Being a game type bird, egg production is likely not great, which may actually be helpful for longevity.
Our oldest have been two Belgian d'Uccle hens, and two very tiny Jersey Giant hens, who made it to ten years of age.
Mary
 

erlibrd

Free Ranging
Premium Feather Member
11 Years
Oct 8, 2010
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I have a Cuckoo Maran hen age 9, she hasnt laid for 3/4 years. She survived a fox attack this past spring, the back of her neck was missing a lot of feathers and she was very bruised.
 

DobieLover

Easily distracted by chickens
Premium Feather Member
Jul 23, 2018
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NY Southern Tier
My Coop
My Coop
Wondering what the longest living chicken breeds are and who lays most eggs out of them?
These two traits work completely against each other. As @Folly's place mentioned, high egg production generally equates to a shorter life.
I’ve got mostly red sexlinks and I’ve been told they don’t live long And is that true?
Yes, they tend not to live long do to being engineered for high production.

I had two hatchery quality White Leghorns. Both were euthanized rather young. One made it to about 20 months. The other made it to about 27 months. Both suffered from reproductive issues that caused ascites.

If you want a long lived bird, go for breeds that lay 2-4 eggs a week during peak. Life quality and longevity can be improved by keeping them in a natural circadian rhythm vs. supplementing light during the shorter days of winter to keep them in lay.
 

Folly's place

Enabler
Premium Feather Member
10 Years
Sep 13, 2011
24,136
41,836
1,156
southern Michigan
Genetics!!!
Nearly nobody selects for longevity when breeding chickens, because of economics. Hens will lay the most eggs their first year, and fewer every year after that. So when wanting many chicks, there's no incentive to keep breeders for more than two years at the most. And rooster's fertility declines over the years too.
This is true of both hatchery bloodlines, and many private breeder bloodlines.
For those of us who do value birds who can produce longer, and who also free range, every year is another opportunity for predators to take out birds. And some predation events are horrible!
Right now our oldest birds are four years old, thanks to predation.
Mary
 

troyer

Crowing
9 Years
Jun 10, 2012
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I had a black Cubalaya hen that lived to be 17 years old, she laid eggs consistently until she was 14 years old. At 14 she laid 11 eggs and at 15 she only laid 7, enough to go broody once and at 16 she laid only 4 eggs, none being fertile. I have a granddaughter from her that is 9 years old and several great grands that are 4+ years old and still going strong. They lay 3-4 eggs a week if you keep taking them away consistently. Some lines are not as good as others, especially the ones that have been show lines for 10+ years. I have 2 hens and one rooster that are 9 years old. The rooster was not fertile in 2021, but was fully fertile in 2020.
 

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