Chicken Breeds

scott_48413July 16, 2009

I am getting started with chickens and would like information about the breeds that are avaiable now. I have Rhode Islands, Red Sex, and Barrock. What I really need is what the male looks like and what the females look like when they are grown.

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velvet_sparrow(Zone 5b, Gardnerville, NV) is a terrific resource for chicken breed pics!

Rhode Island Reds:

Red Sex Links:

Barred Rocks (also known as Plymouth Rocks):

Barred Rocks are outstanding birds, I had a Barred Rock roo for many years who I loved to death so I highly recommend them. :) I also had a Red Star (Red Sex Link) hen who was friendly, sweet and curious, and they have a great reputation. RIR birds are terrific layers, but in my experience tend to 'pack up' like wolves when kept in groups and gang up on more docile birds. But the three breeds you listed are hearty enough, so they should all get along fine!

Enjoy your chickens! :)

Velvet ~:>

    Bookmark   July 18, 2009 at 8:39AM
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This is Isabelle, my Rhode Island Red at about 16 weeks old.

The second link is Betty, my Barred Rock Pullet at about 18 weeks old.

Here is a link that might be useful:

    Bookmark   July 18, 2009 at 9:49AM
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velvet_sparrow(Zone 5b, Gardnerville, NV)

tasymo, great pics! I went ahead and browsed your entire album, your coop, chickens and garden are just grand! Your hens are so pretty. I saw the BB, the glass garden totems and the mirror frame trellis, and I thought you MUST be a member of the Garden Junk forum, like me! :)

I love the glass totems, did you use epoxy to attach the glass pieces to each other? I've got to get my act together and make mine, and get my glass totem fountain working again (my chickens knocked it over).

*sorry for the derail! :)

Velvet ~:>

    Bookmark   July 18, 2009 at 1:43PM
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Thanks Velvet! I use GE Silicone II caulk for doors and windows to glue my glass, and yes indeed, I'm a regular on the Garden Junk forum. It has been a lot of fun working on my 'chicken garden'. I wanted to incorporate my coop into my yard art, since our yard is not fenced and very exposed to the neighborhood. I also wanted to show my Village that a chicken set-up doesn't need to be unattractive- I actually had to do some work to get the anti-chicken ordinance changed so I could keep my Girls. It's been fun learning what flowers I can have around them, and actually, as long as there are some of their favorites that they are allowed to eat (black eyed susans and queen annes lace) they pretty much leave my other stuff alone.
BTW, Scott- Velvet is right about Barred Rocks being wonderful chickens! I've got three, Betty, Harriette and Opal, and they are all very different personality wise, but each very special in their own way. Betty is my lap chicken. She loves to be held and petted- their feathers are very soft and fluffy. Harriette pretends to be fierce, but she really isn't, and Opal is shy, but very gentle and sweet. I only have one Rhode Island Red. Isabelle is beautiful, though rather skittish. I just love her chocolatey color. She my sun worshiper. She'll drop in her tracks to sunbathe when a beam of sun hits her. I also have two Isa Browns, which I believe are similar to Red Sexlinks. Lucy has graciously given me three little pullet eggs and has become very friendly since she started laying. Alice is my other Isa Brown, and she is almost as cuddly as Betty. I hope all your chickens are pullets. I would have been very sad to give up any of mine, had they turned out to be Roos. You might want to post pics of yours to get some opinions.

Here is a link that might be useful:

    Bookmark   July 18, 2009 at 9:51PM
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Hey Scott, this will be my second year with chickens so I'm a bit of a newby as well. I did a lot of research at the poultry sites and also at the hatchery sites, they do have fairly detailed descriptions of each breed. I got Barred Rocks this spring and fell in love with them. I have quite a few different breeds, Black Australorps, Buff Orpingtons, Rhode Island Reds, New Hampshire Reds, Production Blacks and Reds, Americaunas, Delawares, Golden Laced and Silver Laced Wyandottes, California Whites, and a few misc banties and Polish Crested just for fun :) Oh, and my alpha roo is an Iowa Blue. As you can see, I wanted a variety. Most all of them have features that I appreciate, either egg-laying or entertainment.
The Buff Orpingtons were described as "docile." My girls from last year and now these new ones from this spring do not fall under that title, LOL. They aren't flighty but very vocal and nosy. When I hear a fuss in the coop during egg-laying time, rest assured it is the Buff girls in there doing their thing and raising the roof with their cackling and carrying-on.
I have grown quite fond of my New Hampshire Reds, very friendly and inquisitive.
I could go on and on but your best bet is to review what the others have sent and make your choices on what you think is important (lay during cold or hot, broodiness, etc) Lori

    Bookmark   July 20, 2009 at 12:51AM
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I've had Rhode Island Reds, barred rocks and buff orps after having raised golden comets for years. What breed you chose should be dependent on the reason for having a flock (meat/eggs/both) cold hardiness, broodiness, brown or white eggs, temperament, etc.

I keep going back to golden comets. They are a really hardy hybrid, great layer, good meat chicken. Mine have a good temperament, and give a good return for money invested in feed and care. I liked my barred rocks......pretty chicken, heavy breed, but I didn't like the meat off them, and they didn't lay as heavily as the comets. Same way for the orps.

    Bookmark   July 24, 2009 at 12:12AM
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velvet_sparrow(Zone 5b, Gardnerville, NV)

gardengal, my one Buff Orp girl is FAR from 'docile' or 'sweet'! She's a holy terror with the other hens...glad I'm not the only one! :)

Velvet ~:>

    Bookmark   July 25, 2009 at 8:28PM
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