Rhode Island reds?

Discussion in 'General breed discussions & FAQ' started by noahsmom, Jan 12, 2013.

  1. noahsmom

    noahsmom Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jan 11, 2013
    North Eastern, Ky
    We are new to chickens and I've done my research on this breed, my fiancé said he wanted the Rhode Island reds and what I have read about them looks promising. I had a pet rooster which was a red, he jumped on my fathers tail pipe and road home with him and we never took him back. He was the sweetest, smartest and very friendly bird! He loved strangers and I had never seen him offer to peck or fight. However i havent much experience with what kind of layers they are? Are the hens known to be just as friendly if raised lovingly, around many different people? Do yours get along well with each other? Health? I thought it would be nice to hear some from those with reds? We are not looking for meat, I won't allow my fiancé to kill any of our chickens they have a life long home with us, so this isn't something I'm so much interested in. I just want friendly chickens, who are good layers and are in good health.
     
  2. Fred's Hens

    Fred's Hens Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

    There are essentially two different birds sold as Rhode Island Reds. The true bred Rhode Island Red is rarer, is a deep, rich, almost black colored bird with a dark "strained" beak and alligator tracks marking on the legs. These are heritage or bred to standard Reds. They lay well. Around 200 eggs per year.

    Most common, however, is the production red that hatcheries and feed stores sell. These are much lighter in color, rusty/red/orange, are thinner birds, weigh less, but really lay a lot of eggs. They've been bred for very high production, sometimes as much as 300 eggs per year.

    This just all depends on what your desires are, what goals you have for your flock. Welcome to BYC.
     
  3. noahsmom

    noahsmom Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jan 11, 2013
    North Eastern, Ky
    That's very interesting!
    When you say production reds, are these still as healthy as the "heritage" reds you speak of? We are definitely speaking of the red/orange colored reds and not the dark almost black birds. I've been into dogs all my life, if they are improperly bred over and over it can lead to weak health and a multitude of problems! Can the same be said for chickens?

    We plan to have around 6 hens, and the eggs will be for our consumption only. If we have enough space for more and we feel we can handle 10 we might go that far, but I'm
    Not trying to get in to deep where I can't keep up or have unhealthy or unhappy chickens.
     
  4. Fred's Hens

    Fred's Hens Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

    My recommendation would likely be you simply get some RIR from a hatchery or local feed store. True Bred RIR are harder to come by and most folks with those lines prefer they be bred and the DNA be passed on, in other words, they'd prefer you be interested in perpetuating the breed.

    Either strain, production or True Bred would be healthy, if gotten from a good source. Best regards.
     
    Last edited: Jan 12, 2013
  5. noahsmom

    noahsmom Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jan 11, 2013
    North Eastern, Ky
    I found a few more threads on the reds i have been reading and that makes sense. The heritage RIR's are gorgeous birds though.
    Thank you
     

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