Next spring, my family will most likely be purchasing chicks. In the meantime, I need to pinpoint the breeds I will get. Since I am unexperienced when it comes to chickens, I need advice from chicken owners. I have done much research on them and have found a few breeds I favor: Red Star Rhode Island Red Black Sex Link Black Australorp Buff Orpington I'm open for suggestions of other breeds! Since we live in East Tennessee, our climate is 50/50; hot in the summers and cold in the winters. We experience all seasons, so the breed will have to be hardy in terms of temperature. The birds would live in a large run and coop, so they will be somewhat exposed to the elements (we will have heat lamps in winter and fans in the summer). The chickens will be housed next to my 6 pet ducks (who are egg-eaters), but not mixed together. The chicken breeds would have to mingle together peacefully, so no unreasonably aggressive birds or roosters. We live in an area with birds of prey, opossums, coyotes, groundhogs, rats, and weasels, but none have killed any of my outdoor animals (rabbits and ducks). We make sure the wiring goes extra deep in the ground incase of any digging predator. The breeds, not only would have to coexist in harmony, but would have to be tame enough to be nice to me (eat out of my hand, come towards me, exc.), so a nice breed would be a BIG plus. They are not only going to provide eggs for us, but are going to be somewhat "pets". The chicken breed would have to be excellent egg layers, since that is the point of getting them anyway. It doesn't really matter how broody they are, but we strive for many eggs a day. We are expecting 6 starting hens for our flock, possibly adding on in the future. So, what do you guys think? We want to pick 3 breeds of birds (2 of each). Please tell me your opinion!