New Hampshire? Rhode Island? Sex-Link? Cherry Egger? Production Red? So many reds... what is this pa

Discussion in 'What Breed Or Gender is This?' started by 777funk, May 29, 2016.

  1. 777funk

    777funk Out Of The Brooder

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    My guess is they're both NH but I'm no expert. Thanks for any insight!

    Hen:
    [​IMG]

    Rooster:
    [​IMG]

    Together:
    [​IMG]

    Their Chicks:
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]


    The hen's eggs:
    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: May 29, 2016
  2. TheTwoRoos

    TheTwoRoos Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Yup both newhampshires.
     
    Last edited: May 29, 2016
  3. 777funk

    777funk Out Of The Brooder

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    Thanks TheTwoRoos. That's what I was thinking... but it's so hard to tell with all the actual reds and coined hybrid terms out there. Also a little on their disposition for what it's worth. They are free ranged and would pretty much make it without any intervention probably for a long time on our acreage. They've lived mostly on their own for almost a year now (since about 4-5 months of age). They don't prefer interaction and won't come near us unless we have a treat or the rooster wants to fight us off from his hen. The hen isn't a fan of her own chicks or any chicks for that matter. She'd probably kill them if left near by and unattended. They hide well and do great on their own in the woods and fields. The rooster has a perfect cockel doodle doo crow every time. They are nice birds but skittish and definitely not pets. They do great free ranging. I wouldn't trust the rooster near small children. He is pretty courageous but won't fight an adult.
     
    Last edited: May 29, 2016
  4. junebuggena

    junebuggena Chicken Obsessed

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    If the parents are hatchery/feed store stock, then they are both Production Reds. When it comes to hatchery Rhode Island Reds, Production Reds, and New Hampshire, there is no difference other than the shade of red.
     
  5. drumstick diva

    drumstick diva Still crazy after all these years. Premium Member

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    Out to pasture
    x 2
     
  6. 777funk

    777funk Out Of The Brooder

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    School me on Production Reds please. From what I've heard it's a cross between a RIR and a NH. Also, I've heard a NH came from a line of RIRs. Is this correct?
     
  7. DuckGirl77

    DuckGirl77 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    x2
     
  8. junebuggena

    junebuggena Chicken Obsessed

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    Production Reds are a generic red bird that is primarily for egg production. There is no difference between a hatchery sourced Rhode Island Red, a Production Red, and a New Hampshire other than the shade of red the bird is. The darker reds get labeled Rhode Island Reds, the mid-tone birds get labeled Production Red, and the lightest ones get labeled New Hampshire. They are so far removed from resembling a heritage Rhode Island Red or New Hampshire that they all basically fall into the Production Red category. If you only want egg layers, then they are a great choice. If you want the temperament and looks of the heritage breed type birds, you're going to end up disappointed.
     
  9. 777funk

    777funk Out Of The Brooder

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    thanks Junebuggena for the detailed reply there. I know my two are great free range birds and not pets. Temperament wise they are somewhere in between wild animals and domestic birds... very very hard to catch. Partly because we don't usually interact with them or feed them treats. Also because, we went into it with the idea that they were not pets (that way if the day came to butcher them it'd be easier). Well we never butchered these two. Likely because we didn't like the tough and gamey meat quality (prefer cornish cross), but also because they've been good hardy birds. If they can survive this long free ranging, why not let them continue.

    I keep hearing about the real vs the hatchery breeders and quality. I've read that weight is one thing and appearance is the other. Could someone point me towards a picture of what a real New Hampshire rooster and/or hen should look like?

    Regarding weights, this rooster weighed about 8 pounds at 9 or 10 months of age (full grown or close to it). The rest of these birds (that we butchered) weighed about 3-4# at 18 weeks of age. They were tough with narrow breasts and tasted pretty bad in our family's opinions. Maybe we're too used to store chicken. I hate to think of it, but we may try Capons with some of these heritage birds in the future. It seems like when the world used to eat heritage chicken Capons were commonplace. Maybe the taste I objected to is why.
     
    Last edited: May 30, 2016
  10. junebuggena

    junebuggena Chicken Obsessed

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    http://www.sunsetmeadowfarm.com/chickens_and_eggs.html
    Check out the photo gallery from this breeder. Their New Hampshires are outstanding. It's actually very difficult to find and obtain true New Hampshires.
    Heritage bred birds have a different build. The hatchery birds are leaner and lankier, with a focus on egg production. Larger birds don't lay as well, so they focus their breeding programs on reducing overall size. Heritage bred birds grow slower, but they develop more meat. And the temperament of well bred birds are rock solid, not flighty or aggressive. If you're looking for a good meat bird, that grows a lot of meat, but is easy to manage, and can be reproduced; check out Rainbows/Dixies/Pioneers (all the same breed, but different hatcheries have different names for them), or Red Rangers. They won't have quite the same amount of breast meat as a Cornish Cross, but they won't eat themselves to death, and you can keep the hens for eggs and hatching next year's meaties.
     

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