java and antique breeds of chicken : LUSENET : Countryside : One Thread

I read the article about java chikens in the may/june issue and found it very interesting. I started my first flock this year with golden comets because of their laying ability. I then learned I couldn't or shouldn't breed them. I'm thinking along the lines of replacing them when I cull with a purebreed/dual purpose chicken. Do you think this would be a good choice or are there other old time chickens that might be a better choice. I like the idea of saving an endangered breed but also have to be practical. Any suggestion or experience is welcome!

-- Denise (, July 14, 2000


Hi Denise! I just wanted to fill you in on what breed we raise - the Delaware. Excellent layers, meaty adult birds. Good multi-purpose birds. We hatched out a bunch and they grow pretty quickly. Because they're mostly white, plucking isn't a problem. Good natured, not aggressive, the rooster we've had for three years is quite mellow - and quite huge! He is a handsome bird.

Contact the American Livestock Breeds Conservancy - they have a listing and info on the rare farm breeds and the breeders that can supply you. website -

Good luck in your search, and have fun with your birds!

Judi in CT

-- Judi (, July 15, 2000.

oh, yes, Delaware chickens seem to be very mellow and a good over all bird. Just can be hard to find. Wyandottes, are another olde dual purpose bird.They seem to be mellow and not aggressive. There is a web page called the Feather site. It has alot of good information on different breeds of chickens. Good luck on what ever you decide to get there are alot of good chickens out there.

-- Bergere (, July 15, 2000.

Denise: Yes, the Java would make an excellent choice for a rare variety to keep. I've raised Jersey Giants, all three colors, for over twenty years. The Jersey Giant was origionaly bred from The Java and Langshan. Javas are a big bird and can be quite productive. There is the problem of dark feather follicle pigment if you choose to butcher any black bird, the Java is no worse than the rest. Javas are noted for good sturdy temperment and they ae quite hardy. I don't think the Bantam variety exists anymore. If you can find a reputable breeder who has maintained the American Poultry Associations Standard of Perfection weight requirements, by all means, help continue the breed. Careful selection should be made in purchasing your initial breeding stock. Buy the best you can, then stick with them. They'll stick with you. Remember, a pair or trio will provide a large number of offspring the next year and it's better to start out with a high quality breeding foundation, than to start out with chicks that will need to be culled down drasticaly the next year, after you have grown attatched to them. by spending the money on good brood stock, you'll have a better chance of producing excellent offspring. In two years you can have more than you want, :) If you have more questions about raising rare poultry varieties, e-mail me. I'll be glad to help. Randy Henry (JaRaCo)

-- Randy Henry (JaRaCo) (, July 15, 2000.

Hi! My vote goes to Dominiques and Chantecleers. The Chantacleer are especially good as a dual purpose bird and are bred to be hardy in cold wearther. I like the Dominiques rose comb and handsome appearance. The is a lady named Michelle Fitch in New England (Maine or Mass, can't remember) that sells hatching eggs from many rare breeds and STrombergs and McMurray both have Dominiques

-- Dianne (, July 15, 2000.

I've been doing some really fun research on all of the breeds mentioned so far. I'm still partial to the javas but am tempted by the Delawares. I cant seem to find out how big they are. does anyone know? My teen daughter says she is interested in showing them. The Java is very striking in appearance. Would one or the other give her any better chance to win? Both are considered to be on the critical list. Let me know what you think. Denise

-- Denise (, July 17, 2000.

Can't give you any advice here. Can say my brothers black javas are beautiful. They are a good size bird. Every time I stop at his place I get eggs, so they must be pretty good layers. They shimmer greenish- black in the sun. Don't seem to stray to much. I want some just to look at. JOhn

-- John in S. IN. (, July 18, 2000.

John, that is very encouraging to hear. I am really feeling enthusuastic about the javas. I got a couple of responses from Garfield Farm. I can get the chicks from them when I am ready. Since I already have the comets, I will build a separate coop for the javas and eventually replace the comets if they work out. You have to keep 50 to be considered a conservancy flock. I'm not exactly sure what that means or if it benefits me in any way. Does anyone know? I dont want to start with 50 but if they reproduce well and I am culling comets at the same time it may not take long to have that many. Denise

-- Denise (, July 18, 2000.

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