New to backyard birds. Looking for something exotic!

VoodooJungle

Hatching
5 Years
Apr 25, 2014
5
0
7
Hey people!

I live in Southern Florida, and I'm setting up an edible jungle on my 1/3 acre property. I'm very much a bird guy and I'm always on the hunt for something unique and exotic, and I'd like to find something special to let free range around my property.

Obviously, who would be better to go to for advice than you guys, eh? ;)

I really want something exotic, and I was leaning towards peafowl for their stately appearance and large size. However, apparently they need quite a bit of space to roam, or else a large pen. Emus also appeal to me, but I don't have a pen big enough and I suspect my yard would look like a sandbox after they spent time stomping around.

So, do you guys have suggestions? Perhaps a tall, elegant, or bizarre chicken breed? Polish's caught my eye. I'd like something I could treat as a pet, perhaps get some eggs from, trust around my garden, and perhaps be able to defend themselves.

Thanks!
 

ChickensRDinos

Songster
7 Years
Aug 19, 2012
2,242
233
208
Los Angeles
Have you looked at Guinea fowl? There are lots of varieties. I have never raised them so I am not sure how friendly they are but from what I have read they can be raised with other poultry and that they are good foragers and good with small pest control.

I really like the way a lot of them look -- sort of like exotic birds meet dinosaurs with different crests and colors and strange shapes.

For odd looking chickens other than polish, I always think the naked-neck turkens are fun and odd. Frizzled birds always look neat (this is a feather gene so you can get different breeds that are frizzled including polish--the most common is cochin). Silkies are silly looking and very very friendly pets but not good egg layers and need a little special care.

Good luck!
 

TwoCrows

A Native Raven
Staff member
Premium member
9 Years
Mar 21, 2011
40,982
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New Mexico, USA
My Coop
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Welcome to BYC!

I am partial to Pea Fowl. Love the colors and calls of the males. Just gorgeous. Unfortunately I don't own any, but if I were looking for exotic, this would be it.

Good luck with all your poultry adventures and welcome to our flock!
 

VoodooJungle

Hatching
5 Years
Apr 25, 2014
5
0
7
I have thought of guineas, but they're pretty noisy, aren't they? Lol, I probably should have mentioned that I live in a suburban neighborhood and sound could be an issue.
 

Kelsie2290

Free Ranging
Premium member
8 Years
Feb 18, 2011
36,683
4,863
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Ohio
Hello :frow and Welcome To BYC! Not sure if you have seen Feathersite, it has a lot of pictures of different breeds. http://feathersite.com/Poultry/BRKPoultryPage.html#Chickens Are you not going to be able to keep a rooster? In many breeds the roosters are much prettier than the hens unfortunately.. some where hens/roos look a lot alike are your Polish, Silkies, Showgirls, and Cochins... breeds with some neat roosters maybe Faverolles, the various Longtails, big games like Shamos ...
Chickens really can't defend themselves so you do need to predator proof really well.
 

sourland

Broody Magician
Premium member
10 Years
May 3, 2009
94,208
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New Jersey
Welcome to BYC. Guinea fowl are noisy indeed, and peafowl can be noisy and tend to roam. Check out 'Feathersite', and see if you can locate a Florida poultry show and see the many varieties in 'real time'.
 

VoodooJungle

Hatching
5 Years
Apr 25, 2014
5
0
7
Thanks, I'll check it out. I like more tall slender birds, like the peafowl or cranes. Is there a chicken breed that look less plump and more stately?
 

Kelsie2290

Free Ranging
Premium member
8 Years
Feb 18, 2011
36,683
4,863
556
Ohio
Modern Games come to mind when you say stately, not real big birds, most games tend to be really upright, Shamos, Malays etc are big ones (you often can only have one rooster with the game breeds though in a small area) others off hand, Langshans, White Faced Black Spanish have neat roosters and the mature hens are pretty neat also, most of the Mediterranean breeds are kind of Leghorn/ slim looking rather than plump.
 

ChickensRDinos

Songster
7 Years
Aug 19, 2012
2,242
233
208
Los Angeles
Malay? Although those are pretty pricey and hard to find (I think) and im not sure how tame or not they are in general.

Game hens are leaner and more upright but I am not sure they are quiet or friendly.

Unfortunately a lot of the "exotic" birds are so because they are either very rare or hard to care for in average conditions. It doesn't mean you can't make it work but finding something that is unique, quiet, friendly and enjoys life in a small suburban yard is tricky.
 
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