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Picking a breed

Discussion in 'General breed discussions & FAQ' started by Dixiearcher, Jan 11, 2015.

  1. Dixiearcher

    Dixiearcher Out Of The Brooder

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    So I am getting ready to get my first flock. My end goal is to have eggs and some meat for family use and for the kids to have the option of 4h project. I would like 6-8 birds to start with, and that will go broody and raise their own chicks so I have the option to breed them to continue my flock. I would prefer a heritage breed that I can help preserve. Current interests include javas, and speckled sussex. Just can't decide...anyone have some breed specific advice or opinions? P.s. This is my second thread so I'm sorry if it's in the wrong place...
     
  2. Twistedfeather

    Twistedfeather Chillin' With My Peeps

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    If you want Java's are known to be Dual-Purpose (both used for meat and eggs) yet we have yet to try Java meat. Sussex chickens can be considered Dual-Purpose but were originally meat chickens. If you want to get your children to get in 4-H and since they normally use APA show rules you are going to want to get some from a reputable breeder instead of a hatchery. Java's are harder to find it seems and I see more Sussex chickens. In my opinion the Java would probably be more suitable for what you want to do (both are) and I feel like the Java's I've seen outweigh the Sussex chickens personality.
     
  3. ThePRfan

    ThePRfan Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Silkies,red/and blacksexlinks.
    Sussex arent the type to go broody and hatch,from recent research.
     
  4. ThePRfan

    ThePRfan Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Production reds.
    Great layers,but dont brood.
    From what I have heard,their personalities are great.
    Mines have always laid,accept for molt,and are hardy and gentle.
     
  5. keesmom

    keesmom Overrun With Chickens

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    There are a few Heritage threads on here you may want to check out. My only advice would be to start with a breed that is in relatively good shape genetics-wise and not start with one that needs a lot of improvement. Avoid the fad breeds and colors. If your kids want to show then maybe consider a solid colored bird as they tend to do better.

    https://www.backyardchickens.com/t/882036/a-heritage-of-perfection-standard-bred-large-fowl/650

    https://www.backyardchickens.com/t/447684/farming-and-homesteading-heritage-poultry/2520

    https://www.backyardchickens.com/t/849075/heritage-large-fowl-phase-ii/6900

    And a good read, Bob Blosl's heritage thread

    https://www.backyardchickens.com/t/400344/bob-blosls-heritage-large-fowl-thread

    The ALBC has a breed comparison chart that may help you. Your climate should be a consideration as well - if it is cold where you are you may want to stay away from single combs, if it is hot a Mediterranean type may be better.

    http://albc-usa.etapwss.com/images/uploads/docs/pickachicken.pdf
     
    Last edited: Jan 11, 2015
  6. Dixiearcher

    Dixiearcher Out Of The Brooder

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    If you don't mind me asking what may be a dumb question, why do solid colors do better?
     
  7. Twistedfeather

    Twistedfeather Chillin' With My Peeps

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    There are less flaws in the solid colors than there are in let's say mottling or spangling (which is what the Java and Sussex are most commonly found in) because sometimes you can have too much white or too little whereas a solid color like black can't have too much or too less. Happens a lot in breeds like silkies and cochins.
     
  8. keesmom

    keesmom Overrun With Chickens

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    Because breeders can concentrate just on type.
     
  9. Dixiearcher

    Dixiearcher Out Of The Brooder

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    Oh ok that makes a lot of sense! Another newbie question. How do you go about checking the bloodlines or breeding of a flock so I can tell whether I am getting purebred birds?
     
  10. keesmom

    keesmom Overrun With Chickens

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    If you can find a local APA (American Poultry Association) sanctioned show nearby I would recommend you go and check it out. You can see different breeds and talk to breeders. Another suggestion is to subscribe to the Poultry Press. It has listings of shows across the country, show results and breeder advertisements along with other interesting breed info.

    Around here LF Javas and Sussex are uncommon. At the Poultry Congress in MA last year Langshans (very nice ones too), Marans and Rocks were the most common LF.

    I think someone with Javas has posted on the first heritage thread I listed above, I can't remember. But don't be shy. Read some of the threads and post to see if someone there can help you find what you are looking for or make suggestions.
     
    1 person likes this.

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