Which Chickens lay the most eggs in a year?
Which chickens are the most broody?
How to house them?
What to feed them?
What do you do when they quit laying?
Which chickens are the gentlest around kids and other animals? (This is called docile.)
If I get too many eggs, can I sell them and if so, where?
Our purpose is to help you get a little bit more acquainted with some of the breeds of chickens available out there.
Some will make great egg producers, some will make great pets, others will be dual purpose providing eggs and meat as well.
Some will be very broody and make great mothers while others are likely to leave her eggs half way through incubation and others may even abandon or not take very good care of her chicks.
As you can see, chickens are a lot like people in many ways, they all have different personalities and no two breeds look the same.
There are a lot of things to consider and this is just a few of them we will look into in this article.
Which Chickens lay the most eggs?
1 The Golden Comet!
This is a great chicken for any backyard. Her eggs are brown and if you like that, this will one you will want to consider.
She gets along very well with other chickens and make great pest.
This lady will lay around 250 – 300 eggs a year.
She is a docile chicken and good with people. Very quiet and gentle.
This one weighs in at between 5 and 8lb and will start laying around 15 weeks old.
The Golden Comet is not a broody chicken
Overall, this is a great chicken for home or farm!
2. Barred Plymouth Rock.
This is another great choice for a backyard chicken as these are wonderful and friendly with children. This is one of the best of the best for their personality!
They make great free range chickens as they forage very well. This makes them not only a good backyard chicken but good for the homestead or farm as well.
The eggs are light brown in color and are constinitant layers.
They will lay around 280 – 300 eggs a year.
This hen is very docile and gentle.
They get along well with other chickens.
This is a larger hen weighing in at, 6-7 pounds for the hens.
The Barred Plymouth Rock is not a very broody chicken.
Overall, a great backyard and farm chicken!
This chicken ha a beautiful color and is a very friendly lady! Most beginners love this breed of chicken. These make great starter chickens as they are so friendly.
This one also has a lot of meat on their bones and makes them idea for a homestead also.
They are not very friendly to other breeds of chickens and tend to be bullies with them. They will sometimes eat the others eggs also!
They lay on average 250 eggs a year.
This hen weighs in at around 5 – 7 pounds.
They are very docile.
This one does not get along well with other chickens.
They are not overy broody.
Overall, if you don’t raise other chickens they make great backyard chickens. The Farm and homestead are a very good setting for them.
This breed of chicken is probably one of the most enjoyable eggs layers.
They are also known as, The easter Eggers! These chickens lay eggs of multiple colors and they are as tasty as they are colorful! They are very tolerant to all climates and do well in pens or free range.
They lay an average of 250 colorful eggs a year
This hen weigh in at, 4.5 – 5.5 pounds.
They are very docile and make great pets.
This hen is broody! It is important to gather eggs regularly if you are no interested in raising chicks.
Overall, this chicken will make you a great backyard or farm hen!
5. Rhode Island Red
These chickens love to forage and do well in pens also. If you pen them, you might want to move the pen often as they love foraging. Like the Australorp, these chickens can tend to be bossy but not as bad at bullying.
This being said, you might want to keep them separate if you can. It it isn’t possible to separate them, you probably won’t lose any chickens form it but the others may be bossed around by them.
These chickens lay around 250 plus eggs a year.
They weigh in at, 6.5 pounds on average.
These can be very moody and temperamental.
They are very hardy chickens and do well in any climate.
These will begin laying around 18 – 24 weeks old.
There are some other chicken breeds that will give you great farm fresh eggs and for the purpose of space we have elected to limit our list on this post to thes top 5. There are others listed in another post titled, The Best Egg Laying Chickens.
Which chickens are the most broody?
Following is a list of chickens we consider the top 5 hens to be broody and for raising chickens. These all make very good mothers.
For farm fresh eggs in a backyard setting we recommend all of these hens. Of course, you have to have a rooster around to fertilize the eggs so they will hatch. That is how the Lord made it, if you are going to hatch eggs or have babies, the eggs have to be fertilized.
The Silkie is a very sweet chicken and one of the best pets you can find in the chicken breeds. She is probably the most broody breed out there and the best tempered breed you will find. She will become you “lapdog”. She is that gentle
The Cochin is almost just as broody as the silkie! This one is also very docile and makes great pets. You can find these in several different colors with different feather patterns as well. The frizzle in this breed is a beauty! This one is also a very good egg layer and meat bird
The Orpington is a doll of a bird! Her fluffy feathers make her to appear to be much heavier than she really is. Unlike the last two chickens listed, the Orpington is a very healthy laying hen and lays beautiful light brown eggs!
She will lay around 190 eggs a year! She comes in several colors and has a very good nature. This is a good one to own for both eggs and raising chicks. This one will qualify for our chickens that lay the most eggs above.
The Brahma is another very gentle chicken to have around. She is very even tempered and very calm and gets along well with others. They are very hardy in pretty much any climate. These are not great foragers and not hardly as active as some of the other breeds making them idea for smaller or penned in areas.
The Sussex is another one of those chickens that will qualify as, chickens that lay the most eggs. These broody ladies lay around 250 eggs a year! The Sussex is considered a friendly bird but very curious, always pecking and hunting something new. In my opinion, the speckled variety is one of the most pretty bird around. She is also hardy and makes a great mother.
How to house them or provide shelter year round.
Shelter is a necessity for chickens as well as any other creature you may own! Everything needs some type of shelter! The elements are unforgiving and they will affect chickens just like any other animal!
Housing is very important for several reasons and the following should be taken ito consideration when choosing a chicken house or coop..
Safety from predators.
Warmth, water and air circulation
Without going into great detail I will outline these considerations briefly sa we have an article dealing with this very thing titled, How to take care of Chickens on the Farm or at Home.
The house or coop needs to have access to cleanliness, meaning it should be structured in such a manner so “you”, yes, you can clean it on a regular basis. They have to be cleaned or they will turn into a very large mess and can create problems for your hens!
Safety from predators is a must to consider when constructing of buying a coop or house for your ladies. What kind of predators do you have around your home? Are hawks and owls prominent? Are foxes and bobcats in abundance? Do you see snakes around your property? All these need to be taken into consideration. Buy or buy with these in mind.
Warmth and air circulation is a most vital factor. Some chickens are much more hardy than others and don’t need as much protection as others. Some are much less adaptable to the cold weather and harsh elements and have greater needs that those hardy breeds.
A fresh water supply, a way to heat if you live in harsh climates, and good air circulation will make all the difference as to how your flock fair throughout the winter months.
The size of the coop or house will depend on how large or small a flock you decide to raise. It is a standard across the board to have approximately 4 square feet of floor space per chicken.
1 Nesting box per 3-4 chickens and at least one foot of perch space per chicken. This applies for the outside if you have them penned as well. The larger the pen the better for foraging, dust bathing, etc. you can’t give them too much room but you can most certainly overcrowd by not providing adequate room. This again creates problems.
Please read the linked article on How to take care of chickens on the Farm or at Home above for more detailed information.
What do you feed your chickens?
Again, we are not going into great detail her as we have an very informative article on this subject titled, What to feed chickens.
Depending on what you are raising your chickens for, eggs, meat, or just to have around as pets can determine how much of certain foods they may need. There is also food you do not want to feed your chickens.
Most chickens left to forage will find the adequate resources they need and can survive without a lot of purchased foods needful for chickens that are penned all the time.
Below is a list of foods you can feed your chickens and they are all good for them.
Shell and grit
Vegetables and certain table scraps. (see our linked article below on this)
One of the most asked questions on feeding chickens is, can I feed my chickens table scraps? The answer to this is, yes or no depending on what table scraps you want to feed them. Some can be very healthy while others can be very toxic to them. We have a very informative article on this, Feeding your chickens table scraps.
What do you do when they quit laying?
There are just a few options here and a couple may not be suitable for some.
Keep them for pets or let them grow old with you.
Donate to a needy family
Exterminate them. (Do this in a very humane way please)
That is about it. Not much else can be done.
Which chickens are the gentlest around kids and other animals?
We will list the top seven breeds of chickens here we consider the most docile, pet friendly and children friendly.
Barred Plymouth Rock
Can I sell my Farm Fresh Eggs?
Farm fresh eggs have been in demand ever since the chicken has been around! Let’s face it, brown eggs in the super markets are always much higher than the white ones. The fresh eggs demand more money. That is just how it is!
Now that you have begun raising these wonderful hens, you have plenty of eggs for yourself and your family! Some folks tend to go a little overboard when buying chickens and will have several more eggs than needful. Sometime a lot more!
Can you sell your fresh eggs? Yes.
Where and how you sell them may depend on if you need a license or not!
Things to take into account when considering selling farm fresh eggs!
Where to market eggs.
Do I need a carton?
Do you need to clean them?
Do you need a license?
You can search directly by typing into the Google search window, “egg sales law (your state here)” or you can look for your state here, Egg Laws by State.
Where to market eggs.
Many folks sell their eggs from their home. I have never purchased an egg at a farmers market of other selling venues. This is not saying I would not, just that I have never had the necessity to do so. We have pretty much had fresh eggs available here at home.
Farmers Markets and other Farmers or outdoor venues. Restaurants and grocery stores will also buy farm fresh eggs that have been cleaned and graded correctly.
When selling at or to these places or businesses, it is important to keep the eggs refrigerated at proper temperatures. You will also need to check the egg laws in your state by following the link above.
If you plan to sell your eggs to the public there are some basic things that need done in order to prepare and get your eggs ready to sell.
Packaging and labeling
I will not be able to cover every aspect of this is this article but if you follow our link to your state laws you should be able to get enough information on this. For instance, some states regulate how many dozen of eggs you can sell in a week to the public. So, depending on where you live, the laws may be different.
Collecting eggs is a daily chore and it needs done twice a day. Oce in the morning and once in the evenings. Some hens lay twice a day. These will need cleaned according to the laws of your state and refrigerated immediately. Most states require a temperature of 45° or maybe even less. Again, this depends on “your state laws”.
When cleaning eggs, it is best to dry clean them by using a soft cloth with a rough finish to rub off any excess dirt, etc on the egg surface. You can also use a sponge with a rough side. Jsut don’t use anything that will break the egg.
Sometimes eggs have dried chicken poop of another egg may have burst and the yolk dried on the eggs beside it and this will require a water cleaning or bath.
If they are just too dirty to dry clean, water can be used but I would suggest contacting your Local County Extension Agency to see the best way to clean and sanitize them in this manner. One thing, never use cold water to clean eggs!
Stains can be removed by using warm vinegar.
Cooking oil rubbed on the eggs with a soft cloth will give them a wonderful lustre.
Always store eggs with the pointed side down to make them last longer.
Candling is important so you can grade the eggs properly. Most states us a grading system of AA, A and B. Of course the AA being the best and largest and the B being the smallest.
When packing your eggs it is important to use cartons designed for them. Some states require new cartons while others may only require them to be clean cartons. It can vary so be sure to check those State Laws in the link above.
Some states require you to label your eggs with your name, address and date packaged/gathered while others may not. It will be important to include the grade of the eggs on the carton also.
So, there it is, Farm Fresh Eggs in a nutshell! Using for your own consumption, selling, giving away, or just whatever you choose to do with them, there is a way!
Always choose the best chickens in the flock. If available get your layers from a local farm so you can see the stock they come from.
Nothing beats fresh eggs and bacon for breakfast!
Do you sell or market your fresh eggs? IF so, where and how do you do it?