What Chickens are the best for newbies, and where in Nashville can I buy them?

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by madditremaine, Mar 14, 2015.

  1. madditremaine

    madditremaine In the Brooder

    Sep 30, 2014
    Lyles Tennessee
    I live in Lyles, Tennessee close to Nashville. I am a not completely new, but close. I hand raised an orphaned duckling. I just moved and want to get some chicks in early April, the earliest I can, and am having trouble finding suppliers. Along with that, I don't know which breed to get. I was thinking about winging it, but because I want to have a successful crop and sell eggs, i'm really not interested in winging it, due to the fact I may not get the kind of breed I want. I'm not willing to spend a lot, but there was a ready made coop in the backyard of the house we are living in (so happy!!) so that is something I can get out of the way, along with top-of-the-line feeders installed, ready for use. Only problem is, I don't have the actual chickens. Which is kind of a bummer. I have several breeds to choose from, but out of these: Wyanndottes, Barred Rocks, Buff Orps and leghorns, which are the best? I've heard really high ratings for all, but don't know which to get. Thank you!!

    Last edited: Mar 14, 2015
  2. 1muttsfan

    1muttsfan Free Ranging

    Mar 26, 2011
    Upper Peninsula Michigan
    Any of those would be fine for beginner birds. If you are looking for hens for an egg sales business, you might consider an egg layer hybred such as Isa Browns or black sex links. All of these will likely be available at farm supply stores such as TSC, if not already than soon.
  3. song of joy

    song of joy Crowing

    Apr 22, 2012
    Central Pennsylvania
    If you're looking for high rates of egg production, the leghorns would be excellent layers and barred rocks would be very good layers. Leghorns tend to be flighty, but have excellent feed conversion (small body size, little feed for lots of eggs). Barred rocks are good at foraging and well camoflauged against predators. Rhode Island reds are also excellent layers.

    Of the breeds you listed, I've had barred rocks, wyandottes and buff orpingtons. The barred rocks are by far the best layers.

    If you're selling eggs, you'll also want to consider customer preference when it comes to egg color. Leghorns lay white eggs, while the other breeds lay beige or light brown eggs.
    Last edited: Mar 14, 2015
  4. nab58

    nab58 Songster

    Mar 28, 2013
    I started with sex links for my first try at chickens. I knew I didn't want a rooster so the sex link assured that. I also read they produced a lot of eggs and were hardy in New England.
    Since then I learned they also have a shortened life span and/or egg laying lifetime as the high egg production stresses their bodies.
    My next choice was Easter Eggers as I wanted to add colored eggs. I bought 3 sexed chicks and ended up with a rooster!
    Now that I have fertilized eggs :) I'm incubating my own.
    Funny how that works....guess that's what they call chicken math. :)
  5. Folly's place

    Folly's place Free Ranging

    Sep 13, 2011
    southern Michigan
    Welcome! Leghorns and hybrid layers will have the best egg production, at least for the first year or so. I prefer the heritage breeds myself, for looks, dual purpose, and hopefully longevity. Many egg buyers will enjoy boxes of different colored eggs, so Easter Eggers or Ameracaunas, Black Copper Marans, Welsummers, Plymouth Rocks, and any others that look interesting and are available. Mary
  6. madditremaine

    madditremaine In the Brooder

    Sep 30, 2014
    Lyles Tennessee
    Thank you so much!! I found someone on craigslist, my only reservation is that he doesn't know what the breed is. They are yellow, and look about two weeks old. I have no idea what the breed is, but I DO NOT want Bantams. They lay eggs that are too small! And if I'm going to sell eggs, that won't work for me. Thank you, though for the help! I'm praying that they will be good layers. And nice chickens. :)
  7. song of joy

    song of joy Crowing

    Apr 22, 2012
    Central Pennsylvania
    Keep in mind that half of these chicks may be roosters, so you'll have to plan for this.
  8. howfunkyisurchicken

    howfunkyisurchicken Crowing

    Apr 11, 2011
    Is there a Tractor Supply or other feed store near you? I'm not too far from you, about an hour and a half or two hours from Nashville, and our local TSC has had chicks for a few weeks. They had white Leghorns (love them, my Leghorns have been very friendly girls), Red Sexlinks, Easter Eggers (one of my favorite breeds), Barred Rocks, Cornish X (meat birds), assorted bantams and several breeds of ducks. All of the breeds except for the meaties, bantams and ducklings were sexed pullets. You still have a chance of getting a boy when you purchase sexed pullets, but I've always had great luck when I've bought from the feed store.
    I think you'd be much happier if you went that route. You could pick out the individual birds you want and have a little confidence that most, if not all of them, will end up being egg producers for you.

    Good luck!
    1 person likes this.
  9. mymilliefleur

    mymilliefleur Keeper of the Flock

    Nov 4, 2014
    East Tennessee.
  10. kmartinez

    kmartinez Chirping

    Jan 9, 2015
    Go to tractor supply, I know Smyrna, all murfreesboro branches and the Triune branch have various chicks to choose from. Murfreesboro off old fort in front of Sams has 6 troughs full of chicks they have the best selection than the other stores.

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