newbie with questions re: housing breeds together

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by anniemary, Apr 6, 2009.

  1. anniemary

    anniemary Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 23, 2009
    I think I've decided to go with Buff Orps and New Hampshire reds. From what I've read here, roosters will mate with anyone.

    My naive question is, if a NH red mates with a Buff hen, what will the chicks look like, grow up to be?

    I don't think I care about keeping the flock pure unless I'm going to get some strange looking chickens with cross breeding. I plan on letting the chickens roam free on our hobby farm.

    Would I keep the flock pure if I alternated letting one group roam free while keeping the other group in the run and then letting them sleep togehter at night? Or would sleeping in the same coop defeat the purpose? Or am I making life difficult and should just let them all roam together?

    Are these two breeds compatible and a good choice for eggs, meat and expanding my flock?

    Thank you for your help! This is a great site!
  2. cmom

    cmom Hilltop Farm

    Nov 18, 2007
    My Coop
    Last edited: Apr 6, 2009
  3. horsegirl

    horsegirl Out Of The Brooder

    Apr 6, 2009
    You will get a medium red colored chicken that lays big eggs and is a heavy weight, usually heavier than both the reds and buffs. Well, at least that is the results I have gotten.

    Yes, roosters will mate with any chicken, I would just let them roam together. If you are going to hatch chicks anyways, it is better to get blood variation. Especially if the chicks you are getting are from the same hatchery because it decreases the effects of imbreeding and generally makes a healthier and more productive bird. Just look at the red and black sex links (you can read more about those and other crossing of birds at

    Hope this helps and makes sense!
  4. anniemary

    anniemary Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 23, 2009
    Thank you both for responding! I'm still learning a lot. I have lots of questions re: managing my flock, but I think many of them will be ansered through experience.

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