Known for their gentleness and fluffy feet, the Brahma is an excellent bird to have in your backyard flock. They are hardy in the heat, originally hailing from India. They are a very large and heavy bird, weighing more than eight pounds on average. They are slow maturing and fair egg layers, laying average sized brown eggs. They tend to taper off a bit in the winter months, however. A dual purpose bird, due to it’s slow maturity it was passed up as a commercial chicken and instead is the darling of the backyard flock. Their large bodies, decorated feet, and patterned neck and tail give this large bird a beautiful and easy on the eyes appearance.
Rhode Island Reds
Perhaps the catch-all chicken for most backyard flocks, the Rhode Island Red is a good dual-purpose producer all year round. Hardy in both hot and cold climates, this chicken is easy going, gentle and pleasant to have around. They are a prolific layer that will keep up with production in the winter and lay brown, large eggs. Roosters are rather notorious for being aggressive, but both the Rhode Island Red and White are an excellent addition to the small flock.
Though this bird comes in a variety of colors, the white version does best in heat and is a prolific layer of huge white eggs nearly every day. They vary in personality, some are nervous and others are quite sweet. A large-ish bird, Leghorns are noisy and spirited- after all, Foghorn Leghorn is named for this particular breed of bird.
Created in Spain, this rare breed was used in Mendel’s genetic experiments and comes in a Blue lace; lacing is where the edge of the feathers has an outline giving the appearance of a lacy shawl over the bird. The Andalusian is a smallish hen, weighing only 5 1/2 pounds. They are considered an ornamental bird, known for being noisy and busy; they prefer to avoid human contact. They are ideal for hot climates and good layers of large, white to off-white eggs.
Active and busy, the Campine is a chicken that prefers to be out foraging. The personality of a Campine depends on the chicken- some will tolerate human attention and others will skitter off and continue their business away from grabbing and bothering hands. They are a good layer of average sized white eggs. Bred in the Mediterranean, they are excellent for the hotter climates but will not adapt well to those that become excessively cold. The have unique and beautiful plumage that comes in either gold or silver pencilled feathers. Campines are rather small, weighing four to five pounds.
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