Suggestions on breed please.

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by Obadiah, Jan 18, 2010.

  1. Obadiah

    Obadiah New Egg

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    Jan 18, 2010
    I'm in need of help on picking a breed for my ladies. I don't really know what kind of information I would need to provide to help get a suggestion. So I'll just list what I think would help and if I leave something off let me know.

    I'm located in central Oklahoma so weather is as unpredictable as can be. It was hanging around 0 degrees a few days ago now it's 65. Summers get 100+ almost guaranteed with 100% humidity. Winters are usually mild by most American standards but we did get a mean cold spell this winter. Lots of rain is possible and of course our famous tornadoes.

    I'm looking for eggs as a goal of this adventure. I'd be happy with 4-6 a day, but I wouldn't cry if I only got 1 or two. I'm not looking for meat birds at the moment or eggs to hatch. So no roos.

    Space isn't really an issue but location is a concern. I plan on building a coop with an attached run as free-ranging isn't an option. I have a nice space picked out on the south side of the house which is close to a water hose faucet which seems to be a good location to my uninformed mind. The only issue to this location is it is close to a tree? I don't even know if that is an issue but I have found a snake laying under this tree once in the 6 years I've lived here. It is also close to a field with horses and the occasional stray cat and the neighbors dog. So protection will be an issue but should be manageable. Is an electric fence safe for the hens or should I put it outside of the run?

    That's all I got for now. Thanks.
     
  2. rhoda_bruce

    rhoda_bruce Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Well I'm in south/east Louisiana and I can relate to the humidity and temperature problem. I would say if its for the eggs go with white leghorns for a guarantee. But if you prefer a colored egg go with a Rhode Island Red or with a red star. If temperment is a concern and you want something very calm, go with the Rhode Island before the leghorn. I would go further and recommend a Buff Orphington, but then when they go broody on you, you won't get eggs and they won't have fertile eggs to set anyway.
     
  3. speckledhen

    speckledhen Intentional Solitude Premium Member

    To me, from experience, the best all-round bird for personality, friendliness, inquisitive nature and fabulous egglaying abilities is the Barred Plymouth Rock. They do well in heat or in cold and are just the best from every angle. They are not a particularly broody breed, so if you don't have roosters, that won't matter at all. Being non-broody means they have many more egglaying days than hens who take long breaks to hatch and raise chicks (which they will try to do if its in their nature, even if the eggs are not fertile).
     
  4. juliawitt

    juliawitt Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I agree with the Plymouth Rocks, but will go one step further in suggesting America's first chicken the Dominique which comes from the Rocks. I like their temperment even more, rose comb so no frostbite issues, very friendly, moderate to high layer (appr. 240) brown eggs a year, dual purpose bird. Mine started laying at 18 weeks. Not a showy bird, but very docile and friendly. Trainable. I sing to mine when I put them away at night. My little doms have started to give a little "hummy" sound as I sing. I just love my Doms. Have golden laced and silver laced wyandottes also. Beautiful birds!! Everyone remarks on their beauty, but not as friendly or as easily handled as the doms. A little later in laying but still good dual purpose birds. Nothing more exciting than planning and picking out chickens.....well, maybe the seed catalogue!! Good Luck.
     
  5. gsim

    gsim Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I would think about the various sex links. All good performers, and all good for all-weather. For heat relief, be sure to have 1 sqq ft for each 4 birds of full-time 24-7 ventilation, all above the tops or at the tops of the walls. Also have lots of side windows everywhere except maybe the north side. Also figure on having a pan of water for them to wade in during hot weather, and lots of shade available in hot weather too. Do not make the coop too short or it will be hot when they go in to lay an egg. Even the smallest coop should be almost 6 ft tall inside believe it or not. That way the heat from the roof deck is far enough away from them when they roost. Heat will be your enemy, along with pests and predators. Cold will never factor into it in Oklahoma.
     
  6. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

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    I'm looking for eggs as a goal of this adventure. I'd be happy with 4-6 a day, but I wouldn't cry if I only got 1 or two.

    Out of how many hens? If you want 4-6 a day out of 4-6 hens, I would suggest sexlinks. If you want 4-6 a day out of 6-10 hens, some of the better-laying lines of "real breed" chickens might work, like rocks or a good-laying line of wyandottes or easter eggers or etc. If you want 4-6 eggs a day out of two dozen hens, it almost doesn't matter what breed [​IMG]

    I have a nice space picked out on the south side of the house which is close to a water hose faucet which seems to be a good location to my uninformed mind. The only issue to this location is it is close to a tree?

    If it's on the south side of the house in OK, a tree is GOOD, it is *shade*. Chickens deal with cold much better than with heat. Above 90-95 F, especially if there is significant humidity, they really do not do well. Large areas of shade are pretty important (and trying to avoid heat-trap type areas)

    Good luck, have fun,

    Pat​
     

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