Buff Orpingtons

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I'm new to the the world of homesteading. For as long as I can remember, I've always wanted to. Last year my husband and I found somewhat afordable 2.5 arces. Getting started - I want a dual-purpose chickens, so I've settled on Buff Opington. Can any one tell me anything about these beautiful gold colored chickens? I have resently purchased "A Guide to Raising Chickens" by Gail Damerow. It's a good book. But I would like to know about the Opington Breed. Thanks Pam

-- Pam Sanford (psanford@terraworld.net), July 12, 2000



I don't think I can contribute much, but buff orphingtons do lay nice brown eggs, and do well over the winter, sometimes even keeping you in eggs straight through. The males don't grow as quick as some, but taste good, and are of nice texture. Hens will set, and this is a bonus since you'll want to replace your hens after their second summer and fall of laying. (They lat far less now, and are good for stewing hens). Good all around breed. I keep Black Australorps myself. Both are fairly quiet. Orpingtons do come in other colors. I think it is white, black, and grey.

-- Marty (Mrs.Puck@excite.com), July 12, 2000.


I also decided on the Buff Orpingtons-we are raising them now-and what I can see evennow at 4 weeks is a quiet gentle bird. I halped some friends last year with their first chickens and theirs were so much more fiesty-even as babies. And the broilers we have are too- thoughthey are so slow I don't think the temperament is a big deal.:)

From a friend who also chose this breed-he said that he would only go with these or one or two others with children around (Black autralorps was one and I forget the other) and he said that they should lay well for us through the winter too-which is good for a big family. they are a heavy breed-and our winters are mild so I am not 100% sure if that qualified his rating on these birds.

It has been so fun to watch them as they have grown-and I am sure will continue to be. Hope you enjoy yours as well when you get them!

Peace and blessings, Sarah

-- Sarah Cate (heartsong85@juno.com), July 13, 2000.

I Have always had Buff's and they are probably my favorite. They do well in cold climates and are decent layers, lovely big brown eggs. They are gentle tame birds and easy to contain. I have never had any problems with illness/disease, the hens will set and make good mothers. They are easy to butcher as well.

-- Marci (ajourend@libby.org), July 13, 2000.

We just got our first chickens and they are Buff Orpingtons. The one thing that has been a surprise to me is how quiet they are. They are three months old now, and even the one rooster is quiet! This helps as we are still stuck in town. annette

-- annette (j_a_henry@yahoo.com), July 13, 2000.

We love them! They are a gentle breed, and are one of the few that will still set. And what good momma's! Our roosters were huge! It gets very cold here and they do just fine. I think you will really like them. Good Luck! Wendy

-- Wendy@GraceAcres (wjl7@hotmail.com), July 13, 2000.

I'll have to check these birds out! A chicken coop is in the plans for the spring, and I have 1 neighbor to be concerned about, and the 2 boys (7 & 2), so a quiet mild mannered bird sounds like just the ticket.

Anybody have any experience with Rhode Island Reds? Someone suggested getting them as they are a good all purpose bird.

-- Eric in TN (ems@nac.net), July 14, 2000.


Growing up my Mom always had Buff Orpingtons, they are mild mannered birds that are hardy as well. I think you'll be very pleased with them.


On the other hand I've always had Rhode Island Reds since we got back into chickens. The hens tend to brag when they lay eggs but they are very stable birds that interact well with people. The roosters are very protective of the girls but I've never had trouble with one being mean to people. I think they are a great dual purpose bird that are a good size and lay reliably throughout the year.


-- Jim Tanner (tanner_jim@hotmail.com), July 14, 2000.

Pam, the Buff Orps are my favorites. If I could only have one breed, they'd be the one. They do just fine in our harsh winters. Good foragers, calm, good layers, good brooders, beautiful. And the raptors we have can't lift a grown Buff hen off the ground. RI Reds are another breed I usually have, a little bit more active (even a touch flighty), again good layers and brooders. They are a skinnier bird, and being more active, can be tougher eating. The Reds winter over well too, the roosters eventually freeze their combs off, but other than looking really awful for a while, they do fine. But with any bird, the particular strain you end up with will make a big difference as will the particular individuals you get. Gerbil

-- Gerbil (ima_gerbil@hotmail.com), July 14, 2000.

Hi! I hope your chickens come along just fine.We have one buff orpington in our small flock;she's very tame and friendly not to mention the beautiful coloring.We need to get a few more hens,and the buffs are the ones I'm considering also. Oh,Eric,I'm sure you already know this but please be careful concerning your 2yr. old and roosters.My rooster used to be a real nice fellow until he(the rooster)got to be around 18months old. Now,he attemps to spur me if he thinks my back is turned.He once tried to come after my young son(20 months old now),but the chicken wire prevented that![THANKFULLY!!] Gotta go!God bless... ~~~Tracy~~~

-- Tracy Jo Neff (tntneff@ifriendly.com), July 15, 2000.

The roosters and the kids are a concern of mine, so if we go totally free range, we may just get a few hens for eggs until the kids get bigger. If I build a chicken tractor or an attached run to the coop, I'll consider the rooster.

I also found out that my mother-in-law's sister had a run in with a rooster here at the old place back in the 60's, and mama made fried chicken for dinner that night!

-- Eric in TN (ems@nac.net), July 18, 2000.

I free range and have'nt had a problem with my big roosters only the game roosters , they became bbq .I have 1 game bird left until I catch him , he will go after the kids .If he does the big rooster beat the crap out of him .

-- Patty Gamble (fodfarms@slic.com), July 19, 2000.

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