Best chickens to start with? : LUSENET : Countryside : One Thread

We want to get some chickens as soon as the warm weather comes but don't know what breed would be the best for us. We want to start out just for the eggs, but, might also butcher them later for meat. Carol-Murphy, NC

-- carol barbour (, January 23, 2002


Rhode Island Reds without a doubt for eggs,but for the butchering part cornish would be best for that purpose,they also can lay eggs,but they get way too fat for all purpose egg layers.

-- Carla (, January 23, 2002.

I recommend Buff Orpingtons. For meat and for eggs.

-- Buddy the Pharmacist (, January 23, 2002.

The Buffs are a good choice, they are good layers and great for meat. There are a lot of good heavy breeds that will serve your purpose. If I were you, I'd get a mixture of the heavy breeds and see which ones you like the best. The smaller birds are great for eggs, but if you want to butcher them too, I'd go for the heavy breeds. Best of Luck!

-- cowgirlone in OK (cowgirlone47@hotmail. com), January 23, 2002.

since thiese will be your first,,start out with a mix of breeds, that way,,your not influenced by others,, can make your own descions about "the best breed". The mixes are usually cheaper anyways,, and you get to see the other breeds,, maybe some unusual ones,,differant color eggs,,ect

-- Stan (, January 23, 2002.

There's at least a dozen breeds that'll do right by you to include all of the ones mentioned above. Myself, I'm partial to Plymouth Barred Rocks.

I think Stan has the best idea. For your first birds get a variety and see which you like the best.


-- Alan (, January 23, 2002.

Careful--chickens are intoxicatingly addictive and there is no 12- step Chickens Anonymous!!

Sounds like you would do best with a leghorn or higher production brown hen like a Rhode Island Red or cherry egger. If you are really serious about "some meat" go with any of the heavy breed American or English chickens. I have a small flock (43) now of Barred Rocks, New Hampshire Reds, Americauna crosses, 1 white leghorn and Buff Orpingtons. If I had to pick just 1 type of bird, it would be the Buff Orpington--but that is only MY opinion, and many others will differ. They are not wrong-just different than mine. I strongly suggest lots of research. Here are a couple of very informative sites. Good luck!

-- Jim NE KY (, January 23, 2002.

What fun you are going to have! Add "The Poultry Connection" to your search. Good luck, LQ

-- Little Quacker (, January 23, 2002.

I have had excellent service from C. M. Estes Hatchery, and am raising some of their Production Reds (Cherry Eggers). These are suppose to be their best layers and a bit better layer than the Rhode Island Reds, that remains to be seen. These are suppose to weight in aroung 5 lbs. Don't know if they are of as quiet a disposition as the Buff Orpingtons, yet.

-- BC (, January 23, 2002.

I would go with Buff Orpingtons or Black Australorps. The Orpingtons will give you a better carcass at the end. The Australorps will give you more eggs while they are alive. (These are averages.) I especially like these birds because they are gentle and calm. I've had many breeds and none of them have been as gentle and calm as the two above. After you have some hens beaten up by other hens, you will come to appreciate gentle and calm birds.

-- Laura Rae Jensen (, January 23, 2002.

I am going with bared rocks cause I think they look like chickens ought to. Sometimes I think we may not use the perimeters others may but it is just what we want.

-- gail missouri ozarks (, January 23, 2002.

I have 2 Anconas, a light Italian breed available from most hatcheries. These two lay white eggs EVERY DAY. So do my 2 Brown Leghorns. I prefer heavy breeds to look at, and out of those the plymouth rocks and the Golden comets and the Araucanas lay the best, largest brown eggs. Good Luck.Michele.(PS) Wyandottes are gorgeous, heavy and lay well too.

-- MicheleRaePadgett (, January 24, 2002.

Please , i want to know what is the best american breed for meat :with the best tast and the breed who grow quiqly.: for maeat production.

Thank you.

-- The french farmer (, January 24, 2002.

Last summer, I ordered baby chickens from a hatchery closeby. I ordered a "rainbow" selection of 25. It was really exciting to watch them grow up, speculating about what kind of chicken they might grow up to be. Now that they are full-grown, I don't have a chicken yard filled with just one color--I have a whole spectrum!

-- ere (, January 24, 2002.

A variety of breeds sure is fun. Here in Texas, we have a predator problem, so I have Anconas and Hamburgs as range chickens. Sure am impressed with the Anconas - they will hustle that food and they sure can take care of themselves. Anconas are also a Heritage breed which makes them interesting. I have a coop with Dominiques (another Heritage) and Araucaunas that lay wonderfully. I love giving away a dozen eggs of all colors to elderlly neighbors. Then you can have pets like our 2 Silky bantams that will sit in the children's laps and lay tiny white eggs the kids just love. Chickens can be alot of fun without a lot of hastle. Amy J, Texas

-- Amy Jacobs (, January 25, 2002.

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