Silkies

Roxyknowles18

In the Brooder
Mar 7, 2018
50
41
43
San Diego county
I have had many silkies. They are a very calm and polite breed. I would keep them in a coop because they are dumb.. I have free ranged chickens and I keep my silkies separate or predators will get them. Other than that they are super cute and a lovable breed. one of my favorites. my profile picture is one of my silkies, her name is chip.
 

sylviethecochin

Free Ranging
Jun 14, 2017
5,499
11,305
701
Central PA
They can't fly very well, so they need lower perches than my other hens prefer (eighteen inches is usually good.) They are convinced that eggs were made for hatching, not eating, and they are predator-prone.

Their heads are crested, so they're vulnerable to pecking on the back of the skull. They're very, very docile and are never going to be at the top of any pecking order. So don't mix them with ISA Browns or Barred Rocks in a crowded coop, especially when the hormones are beginning to kick in.

They chill more easily than my other birds because they have weird feathers (not that they're getting frostbite or anything, but they claim the part of the coop where sunlight filters in and they refuse to leave at -6 Fahrenheit) They can be stupid-stubborn. And the crest-beard combo on a bearded silkie can make it hard for them to see.
 

Mduggar

Chirping
Aug 27, 2017
119
104
97
Tallahassee
They can't fly very well, so they need lower perches than my other hens prefer (eighteen inches is usually good.) They are convinced that eggs were made for hatching, not eating, and they are predator-prone.

Their heads are crested, so they're vulnerable to pecking on the back of the skull. They're very, very docile and are never going to be at the top of any pecking order. So don't mix them with ISA Browns or Barred Rocks in a crowded coop, especially when the hormones are beginning to kick in.

They chill more easily than my other birds because they have weird feathers (not that they're getting frostbite or anything, but they claim the part of the coop where sunlight filters in and they refuse to leave at -6 Fahrenheit) They can be stupid-stubborn. And the crest-beard combo on a bearded silkie can make it hard for them to see.
Thank you. Do you know anything about roosters?
 

sue25

Songster
Apr 25, 2017
1,096
1,486
242
Hephzibah GA
I have several cuddly roos. They are also gentle with hens most of the time. But once they get a dislike to another silkiy roo they will fight and it can get a little bloody.
 

Wolfefarmyard

Crowing
Aug 18, 2017
1,724
3,187
342
Gansevoort, NY
I have had many silkies. They are a very calm and polite breed. I would keep them in a coop because they are dumb.. I have free ranged chickens and I keep my silkies separate or predators will get them. Other than that they are super cute and a lovable breed. one of my favorites. my profile picture is one of my silkies, her name is chip.

I breed show quality silkies so please let me know if you have any questions for me.
 

EggSighted4Life

Crossing the Road
5 Years
Apr 9, 2016
14,342
19,971
832
California's Redwood Coast
Does anyone know about raising silkies?
I am getting 6 very soon and would like some info
Hi, welcome to BYC! :frow

I hatch and raise Silkies... Mine free range on pasture and in with ALL my large fowl, regardless of breed. Only recently have I moved them out of my large fowl pen... in order to prevent ACCIDENTAL mating injury by my large fowl rooster, as they all like him.

They can be a mixed bag of calm, flighty, sweet, or ornery little jerks. They don't seem to know they aren't pit bulls! Some are dumber than a box of rocks, while others are fairly adept. Some can make it to the top of my outdoor dining table while others can't even see the roost that's 12 inches high.

The roosters are the same as others. Some get along and behave, others bite from very young and hit the soup pot before too long. Yep, we eat Silkies here. And roos will happily over mate hens if there isn't enough. And I've had them crow as young as 4 weeks and try to mate as young as 8 weeks... though that isn't the norm.

I keep a stag pen with Silkies, Marans, Sussex and others. Boys are boys... just in smaller easier to handle packages, when labeled Silkie.

I also don't believe in cuddly roos... had my first broken heart provided by a cuddly cockerel, turned evil bastard after hormones kicked in. Now I believe in roosters that will protest a bit about you picking them up but remain calm once you've got them. Who DON'T give the stink eye when your leg or dog passes by. And better NOT dance at my leg either!

My broody gals... well they often go broody within 3 weeks of starting to lay and then like clockwork thereafter... I won't allow a pullet under a year old to sit, as their bodies and minds are still maturing and on par with a 12-13 year old in my opinion. After a year old their bodies are more filled in and closer to a twenty something. They are just better equipped.

If chicks.. I always crush the feed extra for the first week or two.

I haven't YET lost a full grown Silkie to predators... but just this past couple weeks I lost at least 3 of their babes from 2 separate hens. Silkies like to forage and range just as much as any other chicken. It's a risk I take... but too many recent chick losses has me considering alternatives.

Number one suggestion... use a formulated ration and don't diminish with low nutrient treats like scratch. Silkies seem to be more susceptible to nutrient deficits. And they WILL go broody without any "encouragement" from you. I collect my eggs every single day. It is a hormonal thing, possibly influenced by nutrition and safety... but not by eggs in the nest.

Make NO mistake my Silkie's will go toe to toe with any other chicken... Oh more like beak to neck, but still... don't mess with a broody! :love

Oh and trimming fluff to help them see better made it worse for us so maybe try something different if you have to when they get fluffier. I live in the PNW and my Silkies seem to do just as well as any other chicken with the rain.

Hope your Silkie's are fantastic! :wee
 
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