What is your favorite chicken breed?

Beccazon

Songster
Apr 23, 2019
779
1,946
227
Michigan Thumb
Everyone has a favorite or two. I am new to raising and trying several. For many reasons. We want eggs. We want meat. We want some just to enjoy watching (pretty, unique, personality) and even befriending. Please tell me what your favorite breeds are and why. I will post the same question in the duck forum as well.
 

Acre4Me

Crowing
Nov 12, 2017
3,254
6,817
497
Western Ohio
So far, we have had 13 breeds of chickens, and should be getting another 6-8 breeds as chicks next week. We are also still in the investigating mode as to what breeds we really like and enjoy, and are pursuing exploring our options. In addition, we have a livestock auction house not too far away, so selling what we don't want is pretty easy.

We really like the look of the Black Jersey Giant. Male is pretty well-behaved, but has his moments. The female is quiet, and not a very good layer. But, they sure are BIG!

EE: fun, quirky colors and personalities. Fun muffs and beards - One haas doubled the size of her muff and beard since her molt (it is impressive!). Ours lay green shades of eggs.

Barred Rock and White Plymouth Rock: Reliable layers, get along well with their flock mates, and friendly to us humans.

Legbar (frost white): nondescript personality, gets along fine with flock. Tuft on head provides visual interest. Lays a very solid medium shade of blue (slightly blue/green).

Faverolle: very quiet, sat around a lot. Looked like a little owl, heavily feathered. Sold her at 4 months, so didn't get eggs.

Leghorn (dark brown): flighty, not friendly, loud/talkative (and we had males and females). Did not integrate with the flock very well, we sold them to another family so they would have a better flock experience. White eggs. We have no interest in Leghorns for the future.

Polish - great visual interest! active. We sold at 4 months since it was our only Polish.

Hamburg (silver spangled) - very pretty!!! But was a male (that was sexed as female when a chick). Very active, flighty but somewhat friendly. Flew out of the run several times. Sold at 4 months - did not need a male.

Black Australorp: Friendly, docile, ok layers. But one goes broody frequently - has done an excellent job adopting and raising 2 batches of chicks. Other one thinks about going broody now and again, so takes a laying break for a couple of weeks, then resumes. Third one dropped dead of unknown causes (not attacked, no pests, no obvious illness) at exactly 1 yo.

Silver laced wyandotte - sassy and opinionated. Friendly, but not overly friendly. Visually attractive. tells her flock mates a thing or two now and again...not sure she is top hen, but definitely not the bottom.

Not sure exactly what we will get next week as we indicated subs were ok (we gave a list of acceptable subs)... interested to find out!
 

Fatherdowling

Chirping
Mar 27, 2019
66
213
87
Glide, OR
I currently own 7 breeds, and they are all unique in their own way. After spending 6 almost 7 weeks with my chickens, I do have a favorite breed.

Pause for suspense!

My favorite breed is the Lavender Orpington; they're great foragers, they're gentle with my other chicken breeds, and they always come running to me when I am nearby. If you're looking for a dual purpose bird; they're also a large bird that lays 250+ eggs a year. They are cold hearty and very beautiful with their full feathers.

A close second place was my Isa brown; also friendly to my other chicken breeds, friendly to me, and they lay 250+ eggs a year as well.
 

Spartan22

Crowing
5 Years
Sep 2, 2014
3,664
3,444
442
NE Ohio
On my fifth year of chicken raising, hands down my Black Copper Marans are my favorite. Super friendly yet smart and Leary (couple are aloof) of strangers. The dark brown eggs are definitely awesome, one reason they dominate in numbers in my flock now after getting them on my 2nd year.
The EEs and OEs are great addition for egg colors and their personalities, they follow me like loyal dogs aside from their beautiful beard tufts that’s awesome to look at (chick stage).
Plymouth Barred Rocks, RIRs and White Leghorns are old faithful layers with loads of personalities, I try to get one or two to add every couple of years.
 
Last edited:

Kessel23

Hi Bug
Feb 6, 2018
2,363
62,637
1,162
Hi Hannah
I really like the EEs, I will probably like the Ameraucanas just as much but I just got some so I am not so sure yet. I just have one EE rooster right now and I like how he looks, I like how his kids look too.
Screenshot 2019-04-27 at 1.04.03 PM.png

Last year I was breeding him to some RIR hens and the pullets from that cross laid green eggs so he has blue shell color genetics in him. This year I bred him to a lot of birds. Including my Egyptian Fayoumi, here are some chicks from that cross.


I also like his attitude towards the hens and humans.
I really like my Egyptian Fayoumi hens too. Because of their brain power and ability to free range. I would assume I would like other landrace breeds for the same reason, game fowl too, I have only tried the Egyptians so far.
Screenshot 2019-04-27 at 1.06.56 PM.png

Unfortunately they are really flighty and annoying to handle. Luckily I do not handle my chickens much.
Some of my favorite birds are just mixed breeds, to bad that does not count as a breed :lol:

Here is a Naked neck crossed to a Silkie.

Here is one of the Ameraucanas. She has been really nice with the chicks I keep her with. She sits on them and warms them. She is still pretty much a chick herself.

I like silkies too. I do not have many. They are pretty good free rangers when you trim down their crest and muffs so they can see better. Here are some chicks in with some more Ameraucanas.

Here is my only adult silkie atm. He is pretty funny, they are nice birds. Pretty entertaining, unfortunately they are also poor layers.
 

Beccazon

Songster
Apr 23, 2019
779
1,946
227
Michigan Thumb
So far, we have had 13 breeds of chickens, and should be getting another 6-8 breeds as chicks next week. We are also still in the investigating mode as to what breeds we really like and enjoy, and are pursuing exploring our options. In addition, we have a livestock auction house not too far away, so selling what we don't want is pretty easy.

We really like the look of the Black Jersey Giant. Male is pretty well-behaved, but has his moments. The female is quiet, and not a very good layer. But, they sure are BIG!

EE: fun, quirky colors and personalities. Fun muffs and beards - One haas doubled the size of her muff and beard since her molt (it is impressive!). Ours lay green shades of eggs.

Barred Rock and White Plymouth Rock: Reliable layers, get along well with their flock mates, and friendly to us humans.

Legbar (frost white): nondescript personality, gets along fine with flock. Tuft on head provides visual interest. Lays a very solid medium shade of blue (slightly blue/green).

Faverolle: very quiet, sat around a lot. Looked like a little owl, heavily feathered. Sold her at 4 months, so didn't get eggs.

Leghorn (dark brown): flighty, not friendly, loud/talkative (and we had males and females). Did not integrate with the flock very well, we sold them to another family so they would have a better flock experience. White eggs. We have no interest in Leghorns for the future.

Polish - great visual interest! active. We sold at 4 months since it was our only Polish.

Hamburg (silver spangled) - very pretty!!! But was a male (that was sexed as female when a chick). Very active, flighty but somewhat friendly. Flew out of the run several times. Sold at 4 months - did not need a male.

Black Australorp: Friendly, docile, ok layers. But one goes broody frequently - has done an excellent job adopting and raising 2 batches of chicks. Other one thinks about going broody now and again, so takes a laying break for a couple of weeks, then resumes. Third one dropped dead of unknown causes (not attacked, no pests, no obvious illness) at exactly 1 yo.

Silver laced wyandotte - sassy and opinionated. Friendly, but not overly friendly. Visually attractive. tells her flock mates a thing or two now and again...not sure she is top hen, but definitely not the bottom.

Not sure exactly what we will get next week as we indicated subs were ok (we gave a list of acceptable subs)... interested to find out!
Great info thank you! Hope you post an update here when your new ones arrive!
 

ChooksNQuilts

Free Ranging
Nov 26, 2017
2,196
4,614
567
Southwest Idaho
I have also had several breeds as well.
I do want to point out something I learned about pullets-
Their personality can change after they start laying.
Mostly it’s a flighty skittish pullet that calms down a lot more when she starts laying so keep that in mind.
Also, it’s hard to judge a breed based on only 1 individual or line.

Red sex-link: I only have one but we love her. She’s super smart and the dominant hen in our flock. She laid a jumbo egg just about every single day of her first year. Many of the first ones were double yolkers. She is dominant but isn’t a bully.

Silver Laced Wyandotte: we had 3 of these. I didn’t like them and have no plans on getting more Wyandottes of any variety. They were good layers but very bossy and would bully other birds and each other. One even challenged my dominant red sex link and lost. I rehomed them and they did better there.
* Sometimes a breed or individual just isn’t right for your flock or set up.

Dark Brahma (bantam): I only had a bantam roo if this breed. He was fantastic! Best roo I’ve had so far. He was confident without being aggressive. He was easy on the hens feathers and backs when breeding them. A very sweet guy. I rehomed him because I wanted a roo of a different breed and I’ve regretted it every since, especially because he died at his new home.

Naked Neck: I started out with 6 of this breed (type). I had 3 pullets and 3 cockerels. One pullet died at 4 weeks; something wrong internally. We put two cockerels in the freezer and kept the most skittish one. The pullets started laying at about 22 weeks and are very consistent layers. They both lay a large egg with strong shells. They aren’t extremely friendly but are calm and steady in temperament. One was flighty as a juvenile and calmed down a lot after POL. The cockerel was a good flock master for the last year. He kept watch and would encourage the hens to lay in the nest boxes. We rehomed him recently due to aggression towards my husband.

EE: I have found EEs to be a bit of a conundrum. I love the unusual feather colors and patterns but these birds are very independent and like to wander.
They like to go over the fence and explore and can get themselves in trouble. We had to extend the height of our fencing to 7-8 feet to keep them in even with clipped wings. They also seem to usually be at the bottom of the pecking order. My NN roo would pick on mine but she’s a favorite of my Australorp roo.

Plymouth Rock (partridge, Silver Penciled & barred): I really like these birds. They’re friendly (especially the barred & SP!) and calm. Consistent and reliable layers. One partridge Rock died at 2 weeks. It just failed to thrive and another died at 7-8 months, possibly egg bound. The other 5 are doing great. I’ll always have Rocks in my flock.

Australorp: I ordered 3 and one turned out to be a cockerel. One turned out to be a Jersey Giant lol. The cockerel is fantastic! He was extremely skittish as a chick and isn’t aggressive in the least. He’s very watchful and good with his ladies. A gorgeous bird! The pullet is a docile girl and good layer.

Jersey Giant: I didn’t order one but I got one anyway lol. She is probably our best layer right now. She lays practically daily a extra large/jumbo egg with a wonderful smooth surface and strong shell. She is calm and sweet.

Speckled Sussex: these girls are very friendly and curious and will follow you about to see what you’re up to and chatter about it to you the whole time. I have one that has trouble with her eggs being thin shelled and sometimes with no shell. Not as consistent layers as my Rocks but still good.

Orpington: I only have one and she’s a buff. She’s a juvenile at two months old. I didn’t want Orpingtons at first because I thought they were “boring” ...I don’t know why. I really love the little girl I have now though. Buff Orpingtons are the golden retrievers of the chicken world lol. Super friendly and calm. My girl loves to climb up and sit on my shoulder. She’s perfectly happy sitting on my lap or arm and preening or dozing.

Assorted Bantams: I love my bantams!
I have mostly bantam Cochins but I also have a Japanese and D’Uccle. They have the most interesting personalities and several of them are very high in the pecking order.
I also have what I call “half & half” (H&H) which are standard large fowl crossed with bantams. My H&H girls (I have 3) are always going broody. They tend to be rather flighty but are good mothers. My Japanese is also raising some chicks right now.
The H&H are pretty consistent layers when not broody and they lay a good sized egg (bigger than a pure bantam) yet eat less feed than their LF counterparts.
I enjoy bantams very much and wouldn’t mind having a bantam only flock if I had to. I also prefer bantam roosters as they are much easier on the hens feathers and backs than the big boys.
 
Last edited:

Beccazon

Songster
Apr 23, 2019
779
1,946
227
Michigan Thumb
I have also had several breeds as well.
I do want to point out something I learned about pullets-
Their personality can change after they start laying.
Mostly it’s a flighty skittish pullet that calms down a lot more when she starts laying so keep that in mind.
Also, it’s hard to judge a breed based on only 1 individual or line.

Red sex-link: I only have one but we love her. She’s super smart and the dominant hen in our flock. She laid a jumbo egg just about every single day of her first year. Many of the first ones were double yolkers. She is dominant but isn’t a bully.

Silver Laced Wyandotte: we had 3 of these. I didn’t like them and have no plans on getting more Wyandottes of any variety. They were good layers but very bossy and would bully other birds and each other. One even challenged my dominant red sex link and lost. I rehomed them and they did better there.
* Sometimes a breed or individual just isn’t right for your flock or set up.

Dark Brahma (bantam): I only had a bantam roo if this breed. He was fantastic! Best roo I’ve had so far. He was confident without being aggressive. He was easy on the hens feathers and backs when breeding them. A very sweet guy. I rehomed him because I wanted a roo of a different breed and I’ve regretted it every since, especially because he died at his new home.

Naked Neck: I started out with 6 of this breed (type). I had 3 pullets and 3 cockerels. One pullet died at 4 weeks; something wrong internally. We put two cockerels in the freezer and kept the most skittish one. The pullets started laying at about 22 weeks and are very consistent layers. They both lay a large egg with strong shells. They aren’t extremely friendly but are calm and steady in temperament. One was flighty as a juvenile and calmed down a lot after POL. The cockerel was a good flock master for the last year. He kept watch and would encourage the hens to lay in the nest boxes. We rehomed him recently due to aggression towards my husband.

EE: I have found EEs to be a bit of a conundrum. I love the unusual feather colors and patterns but these birds are very independent and like to wander.
They like to go over the fence and explore and can get themselves in trouble. We had to extend the height of our fencing to 7-8 feet to keep them in even with clipped wings. They also seem to usually be at the bottom of the pecking order. My NN roo would pick on mine but she’s a favorite of my Australorp roo.

Plymouth Rock (partridge, Silver Penciled & barred): I really like these birds. They’re friendly (especially the barred & SP!) and calm. Consistent and reliable layers. One partridge Rock died at 2 weeks. It just failed to thrive and another died at 7-8 months, possibly egg bound. The other 5 are doing great. I’ll always have Rocks in my flock.

Australorp: I ordered 3 and one turned out to be a cockerel. One turned out to be a Jersey Giant lol. The cockerel is fantastic! He was extremely skittish as a chick and isn’t aggressive in the least. He’s very watchful and good with his ladies. A gorgeous bird! The pullet is a docile girl and good layer.

Jersey Giant: I didn’t order one but I got one anyway lol. She is probably our best layer right now. She lays practically daily a extra large/jumbo egg with a wonderful smooth surface and strong shell. She is calm and sweet.

Speckled Sussex: these girls are very friendly and curious and will follow you about to see what you’re up to and chatter about it to you the whole time. I have one that has trouble with her eggs being thin shelled and sometimes with no shell. Not as consistent layers as my Rocks but still good.

Assorted Bantams: I love my bantams!
I have mostly bantam Cochins but I also have a Japanese and D’Uccle. They have the most interesting personalities and several of them are very high in the pecking order.
I also have what I call “half & half” (H&H) which are standard large fowl crossed with bantams. My H&H girls (I have 3) are always going broody. They tend to be rather flighty but are good mothers. My Japanese is also raising some chicks right now.
The H&H are pretty consistent layers when not broody and they lay a good sized egg (bigger than a pure bantam) yet eat less feed than their LF counterparts.
I enjoy bantams very much and wouldn’t mind having a bantam only flock if I had to. I also prefer bantam roosters as they are much easier on the hens feathers and backs than the big boys.
Thank you! Terrific!
 
Top Bottom