Sacramento Area and Kiddo friendly chicks?


8 Years
Feb 26, 2011
Hi friends! I'm BRAND NEW at this and we are looking into coops, chicks, etc. Any opinions on the best chickens for Sacramento area (about half an hour up the hill towards the Sierra Nevadas) and for children. Right now our little on is 3 years old and I don't suspect he'll be doing a lot of interacting with the girls until he's a few years older. Just need a friendly docile-ish breed.

Barred Rocks and Australorps. Or Buff Orpingtons. Also cochins, but they do have trouble with extreme heat. I have lots of tree cover and shade so I keep cochins in my extremely varied flock.

Welcome to the world of chicken keeping - and BYC!!!
I have 12 chicks, 3 are Australorps and they are by far less flighty. They don't mind being picked up at all and are really friendly and curious already. The others run in the opposite direction when I put my hand in. I can see these girls being gentle hens for sure. I have always heard Australorps are friendly (and great egg layers!) plus I think they are beautiful so I'm happy I got them. I have three children (8,6 and 1) so I hope these end up being docile and allow the kids to pet them or hold them.
Buff Orps, Australorps, and Wyandottes are tried and true in my yard! I will say my Australorps are the friendliest. They let my little girls (age 6 & 8) "paint" their toenails with sidewalk chalk. I doubt your boy will want to do that, but that does give you an idea of what they tolerate. My Wyandotte has visited convalescent homes with the girls, for their 4H projects. She is really calm, when handled, but she doesn't come jump on our laps like the Australorps do. The Buff Orps are very sweet, and tolerate a lot of cuddling. Just watch those hot summers, and make sure you have some fans in place for the heatwaves. I lost my favorite Buff Orp in a freaky hot September day (112 degrees). It broke our hearts. She was our first layer, and top hen in the flock. I continue to flog myself over my decision to not turn the fans on that day. If only...

I would postpone bantams until your son is a bit older, but when he's a "seasoned" chicken handler, you might really like Old English Game Bantams. They can be really sweet and calm, and they are just the right size for little hands to handle. We have a couple pairs for my girls' 4H projects. I just got my first Serama chick, who is nearly human, but due to her tiny size, I'd recommend experienced/ older hands for that breed.

Chickens are really terrific. You will love them to pieces. Watch the beaks vs eyeballs though. Chickens don't know better, but you can teach your kids to keep their faces at a safe distance. Other than a scratch here or there, they are a great kids pet.
I just purchased some silkie babies from a woman in Lincoln. Silkies are supposed to be one of the most docile and friendly breeds. I think she has silkies of all ages up there. Go to craigslist and search "silkie chicks" and you will find her. This is my third round of chickens but first time with silkies. I have about 28 mixed chicks from mcmurray. I had ordered a couple of silkies along with the batch but a small fire killed two of them.
i picked up the additional yesterday to replace the ones i lost. So looking forward to them!
I highly recommend Buff Orpingtons. They really are a very good all round good choice. Mine are very gently with my granddaughter (and she with them).
I have 4 RIR. They are all very friendly. One is 2 years old and the other three are 1 year old. The 2 year old wants to be held all of the time and likes to talk to us a lot. This is why I added more RIR to my flock last year. I will definitely get more the next time I raise chicks (probably not for a couple of years).

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