Pure bred vs. Mixed breed

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by chickenboy43, Apr 10, 2017.

  1. chickenboy43

    chickenboy43 New Egg

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    I've got a question that hopefully y'all could answer. Is there any benefits to having a pure bred chicken, over a mixed breed? Does it effect there egg laying, life span, etc... the reason I ask is I was give a few chicks that had just hatched, and I've never messed around with mixed breeds.thanks.
     
  2. mizjones

    mizjones Out Of The Brooder

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    Hey Chickenboy, I'm no expert but it's my understanding that the main value in raising sustainable heritage breeds is for preservation purposes. According to the Livestock Conservancy there are 11 breeds that are currently threatened with extinction. So for those who can afford to do it, purchasing heritage breeds is a good thing.

    As for mixed breeds, many people enthusiastically embrace the mutt chickens. (Note: I'd love to hear more on this if anyone out there disagrees). We're just starting our new flock after several years hiatus and if I recall correctly, we had several robust mixes last time and they were great. Eggs: check. Meat: check. I don't know if this helps, just tossing in my two cents. Enjoy your birds!
     
  3. bobbi-j

    bobbi-j Chicken Obsessed

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    What are your flock goals? Do you want to breed and sell chickens? If that's the case, you'll have better luck with purebreds. If you just want to have chickens for eggs, meat and some entertainment, mutts are great. I don't think they are any more long-lived than a purebred hatchery bird.
     
  4. chickenboy43

    chickenboy43 New Egg

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    Thank you both for your inputs.
     
  5. rosemarythyme

    rosemarythyme Chillin' With My Peeps

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    To me the main advantage of having a pure bred anything (chicken, dog, etc) is you kind of have a general idea of what to expect from the animal, from size to disposition. But if you just want some eggs for your family, it doesn't really matter which you get.
     
  6. peaceisgreen

    peaceisgreen Out Of The Brooder

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    read up on genetic extinction
     
  7. chickenboy43

    chickenboy43 New Egg

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    Thank you all I just didn't know if maybe purebred would produce more egg.
     
  8. rosemarythyme

    rosemarythyme Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Purebreds that are specifically geared for laying can produce more eggs more quickly, so if that's your main goal that's something to keep in mind. The offset is since they produce more, they're more apt to burn out faster and may not live as long as breeds or mix breed birds that aren't bred for high production.
     
  9. LadyVictorian

    LadyVictorian Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Actually from people I talk to purebreds tend to live longer than egg producing highbreeds. Someone had a heritage bird that lived to 16 before a hawk got her, she was a silkie hen. That same customer said all 3 of her red sex link hens died of a prolapsed vent at only 5 years old. She said most of her heritage breeds live 13+ years. My main reason for getting heritage birds, better health/last longer. Granted you get them from an actual breeder and not a hatchery but I don't count hatchery birds as heritage birds.
     
  10. centrarchid

    centrarchid Chicken Obsessed

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    I am generally impressed with health and productivity of many crossbred chickens. Pure or not does not matter unless you intend to breed birds that are to have value to others interested in chickens like done with heritage breeds. Likely more than 99% of poultry keepers have what I would characterize as dead end flocks. That means, regardless of breeding, the chickens they keep will leave no descendants beyond a few years down the road. Commercial hatcheries and to a lesser extent small scale breeders are able to provide replacements keeping the system going.

    In the interest of genetic conservation, I would like to see more sustained breeding. Most of the time that would involve pure but crossing could have a beneficial role as well.
     

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