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What's the best Laying hybrid.. Isa browns?

Discussion in 'What Breed Or Gender is This?' started by reeds16, Jan 27, 2013.

  1. reeds16

    reeds16 Out Of The Brooder

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    This is my first post on here. Just got an account! haha but anyway, I'm getting 120 new layers this spring to add to my existing free range flock. I've been researching the best production hens for brown eggs and I'm not sure which breed to pick. I'm already getting some more Ameraucanas and Welsummers for their special egg colors, but for my restaraunt deliveries, I want an egg laying breed (prefferably brown over white) that will give the most possible eggs. If you have an opinion on which breed would be best for this, please let me know, but with the research I've done I'm between Red Sex Links and Isa Browns. I'm not sure what the differences between the two are, if there are any, but I'd like to know. I've heard that Isa Browns are used in most brown egg factories because they lay 300 eggs in the first year, and they're fairly hardy birds, so I'm leaning towards them. I know their egg production drops early but that's fine with me because I only keep each batch of birds for 1.5-2 years. Also, even though I'd rather have brown eggs than white, leghorns still arn't totally out of the question. Please let me know your opinions! Thanks
     
    Last edited: Jan 27, 2013
  2. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

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    Isa browns are a sex link that has been developed over years and I think the mix is patented. Check out username Fred's Hens, he uses Isa hens for production and really likes them. I think since so much research has gone into them and they're used by commercial operations, you couldn't go wrong with them.

    Other sex links are usually really good layers, the different hatcheries use different parent stock but they're usually all good laying birds.
     
  3. Fred's Hens

    Fred's Hens Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

    I'd recommend you actually buy a commercial hybrid. Brown egg layer. The smaller retail hatcheries commonly sell Red Sex Links but rarely disclose the true makeup of the bird. Is it merely a red sex link they made themselves out of breeding stock on hand? Easy enough to do. Getting to the straight truth is hard, sometimes. They don't often give out that information. Their market is not very often geared toward that end.

    If you really, truly want top laying birds, the ISA is a good choice, and it is still solidly in the 320 egg per pullet year territory, but it has been surpassed by some Hy Line birds, I believe. I'd do a little research on sites where commercial layers is a more common area of discussion. Hy-Line, Hi-Sex, DeKalb, Bovan, ISA, Tetra and other genetics corporations vie for producing the industry's top laying brown egger. The Hy-Line Brown is a 320 egger, and the Hy-Line Silver Brown is 330. http://www.hyline.com/aspx/productsandservices/products.aspx

    Townline Hatchery, Zeeland, MI sells ISA Browns to the public. You may need to discover a retail connection for some of the other varieties.
     
    Last edited: Jan 27, 2013
    1 person likes this.
  4. WalkingOnSunshine

    WalkingOnSunshine Overrun With Chickens

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    We use the Golden Buff out of Meyer Hatchery here in Ohio because we can drive up to get started pullets for less money than we can rear them from chicks ourselves. I like the birds, they lay very well, but am thinking I need a different variety for next year because our egg size has gotten very large, and we're getting too many eggs in the 110 gram range--too big to fit in cartons.

    Fred's Hens, where do you get your ISA Browns?
     
  5. Fred's Hens

    Fred's Hens Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

    Townline Hatchery, Zeeland Mi sells ISA Browns.
     
  6. WalkingOnSunshine

    WalkingOnSunshine Overrun With Chickens

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    Thanks.
     
  7. allmychickens

    allmychickens Just'a small town girl

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  8. reeds16

    reeds16 Out Of The Brooder

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    Thanks everyone for the great replies! I think I'm going to go with the Isa's and some Ameraucanas [​IMG]
     
  9. WalkingOnSunshine

    WalkingOnSunshine Overrun With Chickens

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    If it helps, I find that the EEs from Murray McMurray lay better than the ones from Meyer. You probably don't want true Ameraucanas, because they don't lay as well or as large as the EEs being put out by the commercial hatcheries as Ameraucanas/Americanas/Araucanas.
     
  10. reeds16

    reeds16 Out Of The Brooder

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    ok, thanks! I'll check theirs out for sure. Last spring I ordered 15 from efowl. They're great looking birds with good colored eggs, but only around half of them lay daily, even with added light. Also strombergs says that theirs are bred for laying abilities alone, instead of looks which is definatley what I'm looking for in that breed. I order all of my meat birds from strombergs and they've been great so far but do you have any opinions about either of those sites?
     

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