Need help to pick the chicks

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by sunflour, Jan 19, 2013.

  1. sunflour

    sunflour Flock Master Premium Member

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    I need some advice on choosing 4 pet chickens who would live well together, be friendly to people, and can tolerate the high heat, humidity of our central Georgia summers. [​IMG]

    My top choices would be a Dominique, Buff Orpington, Ameraucana, and Delaware.

    I am also considering the following: Black/Copper Cuckoo Maran, Silver Lace Wyandotte, or Welsummer.

    Also will be available from which to choose: New Hampshire Red and Rhode Island Red.

    All of the above will be available to me in March or April hatchings,
    Any advice or experiences y'all have to offer will be greatly appreciated.

    .
     
  2. americana-lover

    americana-lover Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I love my Americanas, which is the only breed I have, but they are super friendly and great with my other pets!
     
  3. Jakoda

    Jakoda Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I was looking for what you are looking for when I ordered my chicks last spring.

    I wanted heat hardy/cold hardy, friendly, good egg layers,

    I got 9 (10 one passed)
    Buff orpingtons, by far the friendliest and good layers
    Speckled Sussex again very very friendly, and also good layers, my two are rather big mouths:)
    Australorps- goodlayers, friendly when it suits them, could just be mine tho
    Silver Laced wyandottes just started laying, quiet birds, again friendly when it suits them
    1 Columbian Wyandotte, she's low chicken on the totem pole, her "twin" was the one that died, not sure if it's because of her white color, the others seem to make sure she knows she is bottom on th e pole,,she's friendly when she wants to be, rather a loner.

    Those are my picks, my top ones are the Buff's and susex

    I may order a few more this spring, would like to get a Blue Orp, another columbian wyandotte (maybe mine won't feel so alone:) Am interested in Delawares, brahmas and welsummers..Tho I love them all:)
    Diane
     
  4. sunflour

    sunflour Flock Master Premium Member

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    What type of summer temperatures did you have last summer?

    I really want a Buff and a Wyandotte, but am concerned about whether they can tolerate our summers. We have long spells of high humidity with temps over 100 and can have days of 108! I am planning to build a covered coup with run with extra ventilation and in a location which gets winter sun but summer shade.
     
  5. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Chicken Obsessed

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    I think either breed will do OK for you but provide lots of ventilation and shade. A covered run is fine but a lot of sunlight comes in from the sides. You might consider some kind of sunscreen on the south and west sides too for additional shade.

    Where you are I would not build an enclosed coop. You are not going to see enough cold to worry about with them in their down coats. Heat is your enemy. Don’t let thoughts of them getting cold distract you from that threat.

    What I suggest other than providing plenty of shade is that one of your walls be totally wire. Have an overhang on your coop to keep rainwater from blowing in but have several inches of opening above your solid walls to let heat out. Position the open end so it is downwind of your normal rain direction and put your roosts in the enclosed end.

    Position your coop so it drains and don’t worry about putting any bedding on the ground, assuming you have a walk-in coop. I’d even suggest adding a few inches of clay to the coop floor to build it up so it will drain. You can add sand on top of that to help it drain even better.

    Good luck!
     
  6. Bellatrixed

    Bellatrixed Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Well, of your list I am getting Buff Orpington, Ameraucana (easter eggers, not purebreds), and Welsummers. I am also considering a Maran or Wyandotte. The reason all those breeds made my list is because they are cold and heat hardy, very people friendly and calm which are important traits to me.

    I would personally stay away from RIRs... I know lots of people love them but in my experience they tend to be very aggressive to other chickens.

    As a general rule, if you want calmer chickens go for the bigger ones. Little ones like Leghorns, Buttercups, California Whites, etc tend to be more skittish. There are always exceptions though, both among breeds and among individual chickens. I think all breeds will manage high heat well though as long as they have plenty of shade, water, and ventilation. :)
     
  7. Jakoda

    Jakoda Chillin' With My Peeps

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    the temps in CT this summer were pretty darn hot, my set up is covered, I made sure they had water always fresh, and a little plastic tub of water as well, (tho they didn't use it) I never really saw anyone "panting' from heat, but lots of dust bathing..
     
  8. rockthecoop

    rockthecoop Chillin' With My Peeps

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    [​IMG]I would recommend the buff orpingtons. They are very good chickens. My neighbor had them and they were good layers of brown eggs. They also were loving birds that were cold and heat hardy. We were going to get them but we decided on the rock breed because they are cold hardy since we do not need heat hardy since we live in the north eastern region.
     
  9. canesisters

    canesisters Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I second the choice of Speckled Sussex!!!
    Out of my 6 (easter egger, silver laced wynadotte, black copper marans, speckled sussex), only the sussex girls seek me out for attention. They follow me around and fly up to sit in my lap. Very - VERY friendly and I get a light brown - almost pink - egg from each one every day. The Wynadottes are usually every other day and the EE is when she darn well feels like it. LOL
     
  10. chicken pickin

    chicken pickin Overrun With Chickens

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    I have EE, Silver Laced Wyandottes, Barred and white plymouth rocks, and Marans. Easter eggers are my favorite and the others all come in a very close second( I really love them all). They are all dual purpose cold hardy (i dont know about heat hardy) calm friendly and tolerate confinement well. These breeds(at least my birds specifically) are all fantastic and have made wonderful family pets they come when called(so funny to see) and my kids pick them all up and snuggle them also. The Marans are probably the sassiest out of all of them. Good luck choosing your chickens.
     

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