Having chickens around can be a rewarding and fun experience, but there are different breeds to consider. Some breeds are better foragers, while others lay eggs more often than most. It all depends on what you plan to do with your chickens when considering different types to get.
Nowadays, chickens can be divided into 3 categories: mixed hybrids, pure breeds and egg-laying birds. The hybrid chickens are known for meat consumption. They tend to have a higher body mass for maximum meat output. The egg-laying variety, as the name suggests, are used primarily for laying eggs, and they generally make poor meat providers. The pure breeds are most likely the chickens meant for show.
This is a bird known for laying eggs after 3 weeks, and it is a distinct breed because of its ability to lay blue eggs. It is a rare bird, and your local breeder is not likely to carry them, but if you can find them, they'll be a treat to have around your yard. It is not a chicken you would want to slaughter for meat because of their rare stature. They are known to have fun and energetic personalities, and they are considered a gentle breed. They are suited to smaller quarters such as backyards, and they handle cold weather well.
Their colors can range from brown, grey to white.
They are normally medium in size with no crests and feathered legs.
This chickenwas a more common breed found in the US, and it was mostly a bird raised for meat consumption. It is also a bird known for its egg-laying abilities. This was a bird popular during the first half of the 1900s, but later became crowded out by the cornish-rock hybrid for meat, and the leghorn for eggs. Nowadays, you'll mostly find this type of bird among conservatories. There are a few breeders raising lamona birds, but none of them offer them for sale. The bantam is the closest known relative to the lamona.
Bantams are a smaller counterpart to larger breed chickens, but they are suitable for backyard raising. However, they do have high mortality rates when raised in backyards, living an average of 1 to 3 years.
Because of their small size, they are more susceptible to predators as well. This is a bird that can be raised for meat and egg consumption, and they also make great display birds. These are also the kinds of birds if you need manure for your garden.
Bantam hens are known for laying around 150 eggs per year.
These birds are the gentle giants of the chicken world. If you're looking for a pet chicken, the Jersey Giant is your best choice, since they are known for being friendly around people. They are considered the largest breed of any chicken out there. If you're looking for large, brown eggs, this is also a breed to consider.
Originally, they were meant to replace the turkey, and they have faced extinction numerous times in Europe and Australia. But the breed has been resurrected since the 1980s and is one of the more popular types of chickens out there.
This is a bird primarily raised for meat consumption. It is known for its robust muscular build, which is perfect for the meat market. If you're going to get this chicken, you'll have to take extra care of it during winter since they cannot stand to be in the cold for too long. These are boisterous chickens, and are not exactly known for their gentle nature.
As you get to know the types and personalities of various chickens, it gets harder to eat chicken during your next meal, but at least you'll have a variety of birds to choose from.
Keep a lookout for my next articles on rare and common chicken types.