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10 Breeds of Chicken That Will Lay Lots of Eggs for You

egg laying chicken breeds

For many people, the main incentive for raising backyard chickens is a fresh supply of eggs.

I still remember walking down to my chickens’ nesting boxes for the first time and picking up those warm fresh eggs!

Knowing the chicken breeds that lay lots of eggs is important.

Quick Look At Our 10 Best Egg Laying Chicken Breeds

10 Breeds That Lay The Most Eggs
  • Most Affordable Bird
  • Lays 280 eggs per year
  • Golden Brown in color
  • Tough and resilient birds
Rhode Island Red
  • Dual Purpose Breed
  • Lays 250 eggs per year
  • Brown and black feathers
  • Capable of looking after themselves
  • Great Beginner Bird
  • Lays 250 eggs per year
  • White body and a large thick red comb
  • Can be shy and hard to tame
  • Dual purpose breed
  • Lays 250 eggs per year
  • Breed has eight different colors
  • Very calm breed
Plymouth Rock
  • Great first time chicken keeper breed
  • Lays 200 eggs a year
  • Large birds that are predominantly grey with white stripes
  • More suited for free range
  • Lays 200 eggs per year
  • Half the size of the Plymouth Rock
  • is typically skittish and flighty
  • No need to worry about clipping its wings
  • Lays 200 eggs per year
  • Black chicken with brown tipped feathers
  • Does Best In Free Range
  • Lays 200 eggs per year
  • White with Black feathers
  • Dual Purpose Breed
  • Lays 200 eggs per year
  • Don't need much space to roam in
Buff Orpington
  • One of the most tame breeds
  • Lays 180 eggs per year
  • They have a tendency to get broody in the summer months

Our Choice of Treats for Our Chickens

Happy Grubs: More Calcium Than Mealworms

  • Increase Egg Production
  • Stronger Egg Shells
  • Healthy Feathers

Most beginners don’t know that the breed of chicken you get makes a huge impact on the number of eggs you should expect to receive each day.

Certain breeds, such as Japanese Bantams, tend not to lay eggs, whereas Hybrid hens can lay more than 280 eggs per year- nearly an egg every day.

Choosing the right breed is crucial if you want fresh eggs all year long, so we’ve drawn up a list of our favorite top 10 egg-laying chickens.

We have updated this article to include an 11th breed – the Easter Egger.

See why below.

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Top 10 Best Egg Laying Chicken Breeds

hybrid chickens,chicken breeds that lay lots of eggs

1. Hybrid

There are many different hybrid breeds, and one of the most common is the Golden Comet. Hybrids have been bred to lay huge amounts of eggs whilst only consuming small amounts of food. This makes them cheaper to feed than other breeds.


You should expect a typical hybrid hen to lay around 280 eggs per year. These eggs will be medium-sized and brown colored.


Hybrids are normally a golden, brown color with soft white tail feathers.


They tend to be very tough and resilient chickens and rarely ever turn broody. If you are looking for an all-year-round egg layer that is easy to look after, a Hybrid chicken is definitely the pick for you.

rhode island red, chicken breeds that lay lots of eggs

2. Rhode Island Red

Rhode Island Red’s originated from America and is known as ‘dual-purpose chickens. This means you can raise them for either eggs or meat. They are one of the most popular backyard chicken breeds because they are tough and lay lots of eggs.


You should expect a young Rhode Island Red to lay 250 eggs a year. These eggs are brown and medium-sized.


Contrary to their name, Rhode Island Reds actually have brown and black feathers giving them a dark appearance.


They are more than capable of looking after themselves and are well known for being tough. Rhode Island is very friendly and is commonly picked by first-time chicken keepers.

leghorn chicken, chicken breeds that lay lots of eggs

3. Leghorn

Any child who grew up in the 50s or 60s will know what a Leghorn looks like from the popular TV show Foghorn Leghorn.

Leghorns were brought to the States from Italy back in the 1800s and have made the perfect backyard chicken ever since.


They should lay around 250 eggs per year. These eggs will be white and medium-sized.


They are unique breeds going, with a full white body and a large thick red comb.


Whilst they would still make an ideal pick for a beginner, anyone looking to tame their chickens shouldn’t choose Leghorns as they are known for being shy and hard to tame.

sussex chicken,chicken breeds that lay lots of eggs

4. Sussex

As the Rhode Island Red, the Sussex is a ‘dual purpose’ hen which means you can raise them for eggs or meat.


A Sussex is easily capable of laying 250 eggs a year. The color of the eggs will vary from brown through to creamy white.


The Sussex breed has eight different colors, the most common being a pure white body with a black neck and tail feathers.


They are a very calm breed who would happily free range in a garden without destroying it! If you want a tame breed that would eat from your hand, the Sussex is for you.

plymouth rock chicken,chicken breeds that lay lots of eggs

5. Plymouth Rock

The Plymouth Rock (Barred Rock) is an ideal pick for a first-time chicken keeper looking for a hen that lays eggs roughly once every two days.


A healthy Plymouth Rock should lay around 200 eggs a year. These eggs will be small to medium-sized and are a light brown color.


They are predominately grey, with white stripes wrapping around their body.


Plymouths are a large bird that is much better suited to the free-range lifestyle. Like the Sussex, they are very friendly birds who can easily be tamed.

ancona chicken,chicken breeds that lay lots of eggs

6. Ancona

The Ancona is a small hen that originates from Italy but is now much more common in the United Kingdom and the US.


It will lay around 200 eggs per year. These will be small white eggs.


It looks very similar to Plymouth Rock in feather appearance, except it is less than half the size.


The Ancona isn’t a breed to be picked as a pet. It is skittish and will need its feathers clipping often as it’s notorious for flying out of chicken pens!

barnevelder chicken,chicken breeds that lay lots of eggs

7. Barnevelder

The Barnevelder is a cross between the Dutch Landrace and Asian jungle fowl. It is native to Holland and is known for its glossy feathers.


It is capable of laying around 200 eggs per year. These eggs will be small to medium-sized and a light speckled brown color.


The Barnevelder is predominantly a black chicken with brown tipped feathers.


This is a great garden bird that is much better suited to a garden pen. It isn’t a great flyer, so you don’t need to worry about clipping their feathers.

hamburg chicken,chicken breeds that lay lots of eggs

8. Hamburg

The Hamburg (also spelled Hamburgh) is a chicken native to Germany and one of the most attractive chicken breeds.


They will lay around 200 eggs per year. These will be small to medium-sized eggs and will have a white glossy shell.


Their feathers resemble the coat of a Dalmatian and are white with black feathers. Hamburgs also have another color variation which is black with gold-tipped feathers.


Hamburgs need lots of space to roam around in and don’t do well inside a chicken pen.

They are known to be aggressive in small spaces and are much better than a free-range chicken.

Ensure to read How Much Space Do My Chickens Need if you are unsure about what counts as a small space.

maran chicken

9. Marans

Marans are another dual purpose hen and are renowned for their vibrant dark brown eggs and exceptional meal quality.


A Maran will lay around 200 eggs a year. These eggs are a vibrant dark brown color and are medium-sized.


They are very similar in appearance to Plymouth Rocks and are mostly dark grey with white flutters.


Marans don’t require much space to roam in and are a very gentle hen. With this being said, they aren’t very tame and don’t make good ‘pets.

buff orpington chicken,chicken breeds that lay lots of eggs

10. Buff Orpington

In tenth place is the Buff Orpington, which is my personal favorite chicken breed. They originate from Kent, England, and are a backyard chicken keeper’s dream!


Orpingtons will lay around 180 eggs a year.

They have a tendency to get broody during the summer months, which is why they lay less than the other breeds mentioned on this list.


They are a glorious golden-yellow color and have a thick layer of feathers.


Buff Orpingtons are one of the tamest breeds you can get and will make a great garden pet.

Within no time, you can train them to eat from your hand and socialize with you.

easter egger chickens

11. Easter Eggers

While Easter Eggers are a hybrid breed, they deserve a shout-out of their own. These inquisitive and savvy chickens are the famous blue egg layers, and if you want a lot of blue eggs, this is your gal.


You can expect about 250 eggs per year from an Easter Egger. They range from medium to large. And yes, they can be anywhere from a greenish-blue color to a bright light blue. Gorgeous for spring decor!


Easter Eggers range widely in color variations. They tend to be brown and have flecks of other colors on their feathers. They are known to resemble a hawk, thus tend to be a favorite free-range chicken. EE’s are also known for their quirky beards, which often contrast in color from the rest of the chicken’s body.


Easter Eggers have a reputation for being a friendlier bird. With that being said, their temperament spans widely across the spectrum.

I’ve found them to be a nervous breed, preferring to stay at arm’s length from people.

This is also what attributes to their ability to evade predators.

Even More Breeds of Chicken That Will Lay Lots of Eggs

While the above chicken breeds are most likely to lay lots of eggs, there are also a few other breeds with reputations for great egg-laying. These include: 

  • Ameraucana
  • Australorp
  • Delaware
  • Euskal oils 
  • Faverolles
  • Golden laced wyandottes
  • Isa brown
  • Jamerson
  • New Hampshire red
  • Red sex link 
  • Welsummer

How to Keep Egg Production High

Just because you have a breed that can lay lots of eggs doesn’t mean they will lay lots of eggs.

Many things can affect how many eggs a chicken lays. Their diet, age, and access to daylight are all important.


It’s a sad fact that older chickens just don’t lay as many eggs as younger chickens.
A chicken’s first year of laying eggs is always its best.

Chickens Egg Laying Reducing Over Time
Chickens Egg Laying Reducing Over Time

You can see in the graph, once a chicken hits the age of three, the amount of eggs it lays really slows down.

If your chicken laid 250 eggs in its first year, it would only lay 160 eggs by the third year.
There is nothing you can do to stop this; it’s just nature’s way.

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Chickens need around 20 grams of protein every day for them to keep laying eggs. If their diet isn’t providing them with this protein, they won’t lay many eggs.

To ensure your chickens are getting plenty of protein, make sure you feed them layers of pellets.

Layer pellets have been manufactured to contain all the key minerals, nutrients, and minerals that hens require.

If you are looking to increase the amount of protein your chickens get, read 9 Healthy Treats Your Chickens Will Love.


In addition to a good diet, chickens need at least 14 hours of daylight to lay eggs.

If they don’t get this amount of daylight, their egg-laying will be limited.

To ensure they get this amount of daylight, make sure you are letting them out as close to the sunrise as possible- even if it means those early morning starts!

There won’t be 14 hours of daylight during the winter, and many chicken farmers will use artificial lighting to keep their chickens laying eggs. I would never do this because chickens need this downtime during the winter for their body to recover.

If you are forcing your chickens to lay by using artificial lighting, it means their bodies don’t recover, and your hen’s health will progressively get worse.

Common Questions About Breeds of Chicken That Will Lay Lots of Eggs

Still, have some questions about chicken breeds that will lay lots of eggs? Or maybe you want some of the information above in a more compact form. These FAQs should give you the answers you need. 

What Chicken Breed Lays the Most Eggs?

The chicken breeds that lay the most eggs include white leghorns, Sussexes, gold lines or hybrids, Plymouth Rocks, and Rhode Island Reds. Now remember no matter what breed you have, you always want to make sure their coop is protected. In fact, we recommend some of the best automatic chicken coop doors

What Breed of Chickens Lays the Most Eggs Per Year?

The Australorp holds the current record for laying the most eggs per year. Any other breed mentioned above is also a strong contender. 

What Chickens Lay 300 Eggs a Year?

Most of the chickens on this list lay 300 eggs a year, including Isa Browns, Rhode Island reds, Australorps, Leghorns, and speckled Sussexes. 

What Are the Most Eggs Laid By a Chicken in One Day?

The most eggs ever laid in a day were seven. A white leghorn holds the record for most eggs laid in a year, with 371 in just 364 days. 

What Is a Fart Egg?

Fart eggs are eggs without yolks. They are also called wind eggs or dwarf eggs. Fart eggs tend to be round and small, very similar to marbles or grapes. They are usually a young chicken’s first try at laying eggs.

Let me know how many eggs a day your hens lay in the comments below!

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Our Choice of Treats for Our Chickens

Happy Grubs: More Calcium Than Mealworms

  • Increase Egg Production
  • Stronger Egg Shells
  • Healthy Feathers

Read Next: Automatic Chicken Coop Door: What to Know Before Buying

 Chicken That Lay Lots of Eggs

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203 thoughts on “10 Breeds of Chicken That Will Lay Lots of Eggs for You

          1. Having a crazy mixed-Up flock is so much fun. You can have many types of gentle natured breeds in the same flock. Although, larger flocks often form competitive cliques, with a lead hen, that is often smarter, more pushy or bossy than th
            e others. This is my experience & observation.
            Just like people, girls in high school or whatever current : THE HOUSEWIVES OF….(add your own city of choice)
            HAVE BEEN & ARE…
            My mixed breed flocks of chickens that I’ve had throughout my life since nursery school. About 50 yrs now ! Half a century of CHICKENS!!!
            The different shapes, sizes, colours & especially my favourite, ALL OF THE DIFFERENT QUIRKY, FUNNY & ENDEARING, PERSONALITIES !!
            I am proud to say , many people say , even visiting veterinarians & their techs, comment on how beautiful my chickens are. I do take pride in their bright , alert eyes/ smooth, glossy, full,
            undamaged, (now that I have a rooster, not always the case now) plumage/ jaunty strutting gait & easy movement/ large (varies with breed ) uniform ,clean, eggs with thick , durable, shells, large deep yellow orange firm standing yolks, tensile albumen & THE NUMBER OF EGGS I GET IS CRAZY!! EVEN IN WINTER! My primary flock is 12 Hens, 1 rooster ( my rooster lays eggs too! He is a hermaphrodite ) one hen
            or another has always gone broody, all considering, I get 9 – 11 eggs A DAY ! They’re coming out my ears! I use them for barter for goods & services.
            When planning a community flock, consisting of many different breeds & types of Chickens ..IT IS ALWAYS A GOOD IDEA TO RESEARCH the typical varying traits & characteristics, of each individual breed, BEFORE purchasing, hatching, or adopting, your chicks & adults.
            The longer I am involved with raising poultry , there are more new & wonderful breeds, that come to my attention, such as Cochins & Wyandottes to name some. Despite being ancient , heritage, or original all American breeds.. I was not familiar with all the different breeds available. My updated flock now consists of 16 chickens, 2 of which are home, hen,-hatched chicks, 2 recently & locally purchased, that are under a year
            ( pullets?) & not laying yet. One of the last chickens I got, was under a year old, as a house warming gift, from my brother-in-law, began to lay eggs, the very day she arrived , from her nearly 200 mile journey here! Here is the breakdown of my CRAZY MIXED-UP FLOCK MEMBERS : given name/ size/colour/breed/sex
            (given as birthday & Christmas gifts & purchased by me as tiny chicks )
            SHILOH – Bantam Golden Silkie Rooster
            CHEYENNE – Bantam Golden Silkie Hen
            SHADOW – Standard Blue Wyandotte Hen
            (THE BOSS OF HER FLOCK )
            CHERIE – Giant Blue Cochin Hen
            SHANTI – Giant (she was the runt of her brood )
            Silver-Laced Cochin Hen
            Recent Newcomer (house warming gift):
            VLADIMIR – Bantam White-Crested Black Polish Hen
            ‘BAMA – Giant Golden-Laced Wyandotte Hen
            RASHA – Standard Australorp Hen (all Australorps are a glossy green-black)
            HOSANNAH – Standard (runt of her brood) Australorp Hen
            BAD ASS – Standard Ausralorp Hen (THE BOSS OF HER CLIQUE)
            SITKA – Standard
            Red-Splash White Americauna Hen
            OREO – Large Cuckoo French Maran Hen
            Recently Purchased :
            SAFFRON – Standard Golden-Penciled Wyandotte Hen
            SESAME – Standard Golden-Penciled Wyandotte Hen
            Just Hatched/Fledging Feathers:
            CAYENNE – (daughter of CHEYENNE) Bantam Golden Silkie (sex undetermined)
            SAGE – (daughter of Cherie) Giant/Bantam hybrid Blue Partridge Blue Cochin x Golden Silkie Hybrid / ( sex undetermined) this chick looks exactly like the Blue Partridge Pekin Bantams, that I’ve researched on-line.
            ( I’ll call it a she &/or her 4 the sake of hoping)
            She is blue, fluffy, pillow-backed , rumpless, shaggy legged & footed & has deep-golden, black-centered, hackles & a pale golden breast. This is not a standard, recognized, Cochin colouration. BUT… a Bantam Cochin is NOT a Cochin, but called a Pekin Bantam. SAGE’S plumage, is a common colour of Pekin Bantams, which I call Blue Partridge. I don’t really know what colour it is properly called.
            I PERSONALLY THINK since she is a Giant Cochin x Bantam Silkie hybrid, the Bantam gene dominated & the Pekin Bantam traits became the genetic outcome. Cochins were used in developing Pekins, or vice-versa, Pekins were used to develop the Cochin standard, not really , very, sure there.
            Interesting how the alleles & markers numbers, come up on the genetic roulette wheel of hybridized breeds & colour varieties.
            Have fun with your CRAZY MIXED-UP FLOCK
            OF CHOOKS!!
            I chose my flock#1 for broodiness traits, as I always planned on raising game birds & the breeds I chose will hatch & raise ANY egg you put under them, EVEN REPTILE EGGS !! Heck, I’ve even heard of these breeds, keeping newborn kittens warm & protecting them!!
            It is very, very, cold in Winter where I moved to
            last year, I have 98% mostly COLD HARDY breeds. But the Summers here, are fiercely brutal, so I have to run cooling fans in Summer & offer cold circulating spring water. THE Polish hen, that is NOT cold hardy, she knows this & happily, gets into her little heat lamp crate, all on her own, every night.
            I LOVE MY CHICKENS & THEY ARE AS MUCH A PART OF OUR FAMILY , AS OUR HUMAN FAMILIES & THEY ARE TREATED AS SENTIENT, FEELING & EMOTIONAL BEINGS, THAT DESERVE TO BE TREATED HUMANELY, WITH RESPECT, PATIENCE & KINDNESS . EVEN IF BEING RAISED FOR SLAUGHTER. I used to slaughter mine very swiftly & always in the first attempt, with the most, also swift, method, in their deep, sleep, late at night… far away from the others.
            Bless all of the creatures, The Creator made to sustain us in every way with their companionship, beauty,,
            home/property protection & as living alarm systems, pest control talents some creatures have, meat & by-products, we use for food, fertilzer, clothing & accessories, products to to sell, barter & trade with as well. It gets longer into creative sub lists. But not me.
            I am retired & my husband & I are living the old fashioned way in a wild frontier , like we grew up in as young people. Him mega ranching & industrial scale farming & me organically & communally farming . We put our philosophies & methodologies together, to come up with what works for us humans & creatures alike. He’s nearly done DIY chicken coop, run & house (mansion) building, right now . He just got done running electricity out to them for heat , light & A/C & put up the rain gutters on it yesterday. He just wants his darn garage back from the flock!! SO HE SAYS.
            Toodles!! HAVE a6 CLUCKIN’ GREAT NEW YEAR !!

        1. My son wanted lots of different chicks. So he ordered 3-5 of 20-25 different breeds. Even some bantam breeds. All did well.

          1. i have a lot of chickens we have this easter egger that is broody and some eggs in the incubator and some chicks ,i have alot of mixes

        2. Yes u can but if they are broody they cross breed with other chickens and make different type of chicks!!

          1. Actually the “broodiness” has nothing to do with the resulting breed, that is specifically the rooster & hen. Broody refers to a hen sitting on a brood of eggs, attempting to hatch them out.

          2. We have a chicken that adopted us. She came from our neighbor and just never went back. She lays an egg a day. We believe she is a Black Astralop. We decided to get babies and raise more.

        3. Yes that’s half the fun with chickens unless u want to hatch out eggs to sell they should be fine

        4. I have 16 hens two of each of my favorite breeds. Makes colorful egg collecting . I average from 8 to 10 eggs each day. Some of my hen are four years old. My Golden Lace Wyandotte’s are my oldest and still lay .

      1. I just got my chicks today. 5 Road Island Reds n 5 Buff Orfingtons. I was raised on a farm in Iowa n now in Houston Tx. I have always wanted some for brooding n eggs. They will have free range in my back yard.

        1. That’s great Julius 🙂
          Best of luck on your chicken journey and be sure to get in touch if you have any questions,

          1. Claire, how do you handle all the sick chickens. I have two sick and three coughing. I’m feeling overwhelmed. How do I fix them? This is my first year and most aren’t laying yet. I’m excited and I love them. I’m just getting frustrated with the illness

          2. Hi Brooke,
            What do you mean by ‘sick’? Are they physically being sick?

          1. I have a chicken that’s brooch and the other hand are laying their eggs in with what to do to stop this?

    1. It usually takes about 6 months for your chicks to fully mature and to be regularly laying eggs. However, you can expect your flock to start slowly laying eggs any time now.

      1. Yes that is true, but they first start at about 5 months and become regular at 6 months of age

      1. Not necessarily. I’ve read about two hybrids that begin laying regularly between 16 and 18 weeks. Red stars and black stars. I’m getting them next, I’ll let you know.

    2. You had mentioned that the Leghorns are not so tame but out of all my chickens I have my dirty purdy that’s her name leghorn who wants to talk all day and be carried around. Shes very funny and helps me clean every day and then shows me how to go into the nest box. Hillarious she is.

      1. When I was a kid (1950’s) we had a hatchery used to give us kids little leghorn chicks…we loved those chickens..kept them as pets..most loveable birds, just wanted to sit in our laps and follow us around the yard! Maybe breeding more for egg production has changed them..but I remember ours as excellent pets!

    3. Ours didn’t lay until they were almost a year old . There is no rhyme or reason cause we keep our chickens as happy as possible. Don’t get discouraged… it will happen when it happens

      1. Ours were the same, I think it was because they got to egg laying age just as winter set in. All started laying once the days got longer though ?

    1. Hi Chrissie,
      What breed’s of hen’s do you have? We are looking to get hens soon & I am dong some research on the best type of hen’s to get & also how do you take care of them in winter month’s?? Thank’s SOo much!!

      1. White leghorns! our flock of 10 gives us about 8-9 eggs a day not to mention they are popular for laying huge double yolks. This breeds is extremely healthy and is bred for just laying eggs. They took about 5 months to fully mature and our happy chickens with happy owners.

    2. My chickens started laying at just over four months of age, and the first eggs were so small! Within a couple months the eggs got so much larger. I have barred rocks and they are very charming and friendly, they run to my voice and their favorite treat is Cheerios.

      1. That is adorable! I hope I can train my chickens to be as obedient as yours! Maybe they won’t escape every single day then.

  1. I have 10 hens and I get 10 eggs 99% of the time. Maybe once or twice a month I get 8 or 9 eggs. I have Amber Stars and Amber Whites. I was laughing whilst reading your post about Broody chickens. I’ve only had these chickens since April 18, 2015 and they were approx. 5 months old then. They are a hybrid and incredibly docile and love attention. Beautiful, calm birds. I sit for two hours each evening with them, not including the time I spend during the day cleaning their baths or coop or refreshing water, lol. I already have one that went broody. I’ll be interested to see if she makes it the 21 days and what her chicks will be like. I had to move her to another coop because the one they are in normally is high off the ground and I read the chicks could die from falling out of the coop while young. So I made my original coop into a maternity coop, lol. She is on day 6 with these eggs but when she was in the other coop, she spent two days in one nest then moved to another nest and spent two days there and then moved back to the original nest and thats when I decided she needed her own coop. Not sure if she was getting up to get water and food and another hen would sit in her coop so she moved or she just moved. Being her first time being broody, I’m sure she’s a bit confused. I found her one night in one of the bathtubs, squatting. At the time I didn’t realize she was broody, but I recognize the head down look now and the glaze. I cannot begin to describe my joy and love of my girls and the rooster. Truly the blessings are all mine.

    1. Thanks for getting in touch Leighe!
      It sounds like you are very lucky indeed- most of us would kill for an egg supply like that!
      Keep in touch and let us know if your eggs hatch,

  2. Has anyone bought great chicks from Alamo Hay and Grain? I am thinking of buying some, should I also get a rooster? Finally, do they have Golden Comet chickens?

    1. We haven’t Ava, but lets see if anyone else has got chickens from Alamo Hay and Grain and writes a comment back!

  3. im looking to get started raising chickens to have a constant egg supply any advice you could give on getting started what to feed and all would be great! i have no experiance at all

    1. Hi Mark,
      Take a look through our blog and we have a lot of advice about feeding!
      If there is anything specific just drop us an email 🙂

      1. Hi mark,if you get baby chicks you’ll want to feed them starter feed,I person all used starter feed that’s medicated,make sure there’s always fresh water at all times,this is very important,you’ll also want to make sure the little things are housed safely,away from predictors and drafts of air,keep them away from older chickens until there 8 weeks old,keep them dry and warm,they get wet they die.say you purchased 6 chicks at 3 weeks you can hard boil 2 eggsand mash them up real fine and add to there food for extra protein,save all your egg shells rinse them with cold water and let dry,use coffee grinder and grind them up fine,once your chick are around 15 weeks old add a little egg shell to there food its extra calcium,once your chickens have all the down feathers gone and Adair feathers in place and they’ve been in the CCP for at least 3 weeks its safe to let them out in the run,1st week of life temp should be 95*f2nd week 90*f 3rd week 85*f 4th week 80*f 5th week 75*f. Raising chickens are such a joy and loads of fun,treat them like you would want to be treated and you’ll make friends,good luck

        1. I’m a city girl out on a 96 acre farm land. I enjoyed all your comments, we are going to tray our hand at raising chickens. Husband is building a chicken coop/big run for about 19 chickens. Any other advice is appreciated. Trying to not kill them LOL I decided to get Aystrakiros as they look the most tamable.

  4. I’ve just hatched out 10 baby chicks some (most) are from my redstar pullets so will these offspring be good egg layers? My roosters is a large silkie white, the other daddy is a small to medium size barred rock yet he has light feathers down his legs don’t know if he’s a cross as well. Some chicks are all black, some are white and some are cream.

    1. Congratulations that is great news.
      Yes I would expect them to lay quite well- Silkies aren’t known for great laying but the redstar genes will hopefully counter that!

      1. 16 chicks total now, my neighbour gave me some of her eggs for my last little girl that went broody she hatched 5 cuties all pullets and 1 little roo. So I’ve increased my flock that’s for sure, I want eggs in return for my love and care and best friend ship.

  5. I don’t raise hens nor do I know much about it. But found a hen (she looks just like a Buff Orpington) laying eggs in a small grassy area in the corner of our front porch. She just got off her eggs today and there were 23 eggs there! Is this normal!

    1. Wow that sounds like a great find Michele!
      It sounds to me like she has turned broody… this is normal behaviour and nothing to worry about 🙂

  6. I have 2 red leghorns that are 5 weeks old. One’s comb is slightly larger and turning pink. They were supposed to be sexed pullets. Is it too early to know if it’s a rooster? Are there any tell tale signs I should look for besides the comb?

    1. Hi Michael,
      It’s still quite earlier to tell. What is their behavior like- are they pushy and dominating the other chicks? This would be a tell tale sign of a rooster!

  7. I’m 14 years old and we built a chicken coop and we were wondering what type of chickens we should get and what accessories are necessary for raising healthy hens

    1. Hi Jackie,
      Thank you for getting in touch.
      I would recommend either Rhode Island Reds or Buff Orpingtons, they are great beginner chickens and will lay lots of eggs for you too 🙂
      Happy chicken keeping,

  8. Very nice Article. I currently have 16 chickens and own a few different breeds. That being said, I must say the Sussex, Leghorns, and Barnevelder(recently passed), have laid the best! But none can replace our White Leghorn for production! She is also the most friendly, seeing as we hatched her ourselves and have handled her since day one.

  9. Hi, there! I gave a Buff Orpington and a Red Star, which are both 2 years old. We’re trying to add 2 more great egg layers. What do you recommend?

  10. My family about to receive our first set of four hens, thank you for posting the site this is been most helpful!

    1. Hi Godwin,
      Hybrids normally start laying at around 20 weeks old, providing their diet is correct 🙂

  11. We got 2 brown 19 week olds (Rangers) and 1 black 16 week old (Rhode Island we think-black with blue/green tinge on feathers in certain lights). They are hybrids and the farm said both breeds good layers.
    We’ve had them for 10 weeks now, the brown girls have been laying for 7 weeks pretty much one a day each, however the black one still isn’t laying. Any advice?
    They’re on layers pellets, have half cup of corn and meal work scattered each night and usually a treat of rice and corn on top of their main food. They come out for an hour+ each evening.
    All three seem happy, have grown well, red combs etc. Infact, the black one is the biggest.

    1. Hi Clare,
      So the black hen is around 25 weeks old now? It could be once of two things I’d think:
      1) She hasn’t started laying egg and will start laying within the next few weeks- this seems unlikely…
      2) She is already laying eggs and has a ‘secret’ nest somewhere else in the run.
      Let me know how you get on,

    1. Hi Sue,
      I’ve tried it in the past and would not recommend it. The newspaper stuck to the eggs and sometimes the ink transferred onto the egg shells.
      You could use pine wood shavings if you’re worried about mites,

  12. Hi am thinking of getting 2 hens as just going to get medium coop . Need to be very friendly as I have 6 grandchildren who would love to help me look after them as pets and for they eggs of course. Which hens would be best for me?

    1. Hi Carol,
      My favorites are the Rhode Island Red and they have a very docile personality so will be great with the grandchildren!
      Good luck,

  13. I have just started with chickens and have a mixed group of eight, but mainly orpington and rhode island red. Also have black and a pure white but cannot remember what type they are although they did tell me. They are doing really well and seem very happy eating, drinking and are outside all day on free range.etc., They are around 12 weeks old I believe – what age do they start laying?

    1. Hi Carol,
      Well done on making the decision and getting chickens 🙂
      You should expect your first eggs from them in around 8 weeks!
      Good luck,

  14. I have 28 chickens. They were free ranging and always laid 24 eggs per day. They were destroying my plants and flowers so we leave them in the pen most days now, (large 40′ x 40′ pen). Now they only lay 20 to 24 per day. They are all first year layers. Could they just be mad cause we don’t let them out any more? I have no clue as to why they wouldn’t continue as before. Any insight on this?

    1. Hi Vicki,
      When chickens free roam they get a lot of key minerals from the ground. When they are in a pen the ground can run of these minerals once the chickens have ‘pecked’ there long enough!
      I would make sure that the feed you are using is a commercial feed which provides them with all their key nutrition and minerals and they will be fine 🙂

  15. I have two Americauna Roosters that were supposed to be pullets. They are beautiful but the city does not allow Roosters. What can I do with these chickens? They are extremely nice boys and used to people. I found a home for the third. Our local store sold us 3 of 3 roosters when we purchased our Americaunas. They are more like pets but cannot keep them. Have had them since Feb.

    1. Hi Sandie,
      I’m so sorry to hear about this 🙁
      I would try and find somebody you trust who can take them off your hands, as you don’t want to get in trouble with the city for keeping them…

      1. I need help!!
        A friend gave me a black hen and I’m convinced it is her laying the white egg because all of my other breeds lay brown. I can’t find her breed or anything that looks like her that lays a white egg. Please help!?

  16. I have 14 chickens that are not even 1 year old, we are starting to get eggs and we have 2-3 chickens that we don’t know if they are roosters or not

    1. Hi Alexia,
      Look at their sickle feathers- at 20 weeks old or so it should be a dead give away!

    1. Hi Tyler,
      Thank you for getting in touch.
      I don’t personally know any breeders in your area- I would suggest either joining or speaking with a local poultry club because they will know who has a good reputation in the local area.
      Or have you considered purchasing from a national breeder and getting them delivered to you?

  17. My younger sister is planing on raising chickens just like I do , I raise road island reds and I love EM, but she doesn’t want the same breed as me, she says she wants to raise them for eggs but she’s 5 and I think she just wants a friendly backyard pet breed what do you recommend

    1. Hi Whitney,
      I would recommend buff orpingtons.
      They don’t lay as many eggs as road islands but they are very friendly and easy to care for.
      I wish your sister all the best luck 🙂

      1. I raise australorps they’re excellent layers hybrids are good layers but not very healthy don’t waste on them herritage breeds are far better than hybrids.

    2. I plan to get chickens, very soon when we have more space to raise them. I’ve read a lot on this site and I’ve decided I want to raise both Sussex and Buff Orpingtons. Do they do well together? Will they be able to be in the same coop and not fight with each other? I’ve never raised hens but I know a couple people who do they just have different breeds.

  18. My Six new hens are Black Stars and are four months+ and healthy. I have always raised Sex Lnks which roost readily. These Black Star hens huddle in the corner of concrete floor of coop at night and never go near the laying nests. Any thoughts as to why?

    1. Hi Michael,
      Do they have any light in the coop during the evening?
      I’ve heard of this before and it was caused because the hens couldn’t see the roosting bars inside the coop at night.

  19. Hi my hybrids stopped laying three months ago. Nothing since except a few shell less eggs crushed. On layers pellets, no corn, excluded all fatty treats just pellets. Tried++ protein, cider vinegar, not broody, no lice, no mite, plenty light, space, all is well but no eggs. At 18months could this be the end of eggs. ?

    1. Hi Wendy,
      Definitely not- they should still have plenty of eggs left at only 18months old.
      However 18months old sounds very close to their first major molt- are they molting, as this would stop their egg production…

  20. We have 4 buff orpington ladies, about 5 mo. old. Yesterday we got our FIRST egg(s)—Two of our girls laid an egg within 5 min. of each other! What was completely unbelievable was that I saw one egg and thought it was Prissy’s because she was the only one in the nesting box with an egg beside her. I picked her up to stroke and praise her and SHE CALMLY DROPPED HER EGG INTO MY HAND!!

    1. It’s such an excitement isn’t it Mary!
      You were very lucky and timed this to perfection 🙂
      Good luck on your chicken journey,

  21. Loads of great advice on here. We are getting 4 hens but are novices so thank you for all the advice. My wife has gone chicken mad. Lol

  22. I live in Anola Mb. Canada, the weather goes from +40 deg Celsius to -40 deg Celsius before wind chill. I am wanting to get some dual purpose (eggs, then when they get older meat) chicks for myself. Was just wondering what types would be best that can handle the temps.

    1. Hi Steven,
      I always recommend rhode islands as the best beginner hen and then can also handle very hot and cold weather.

  23. I am new to raising chickens. My chickens have laid their first eggs yesterday. I thought my chicken were brown egg layers. Buff Orpington is actually what I thought they were. They are laying white large eggs. The chickens are a red orange with black in their tails. How can I find out for sure what kind of chickens I have?