Starting your own small flock of chickens in your backyard? Perhaps you are wondering what’s the best chicken breeds to keep together.
Besides being a good source of meat and eggs, many people do not realize how raising chickens can benefit one’s overall health and well-being.
Chickens may not be conventional therapy animals, but they offer many therapeutic benefits that help boost mood and improve one’s mental health.
If you’re planning to raise a friendly flock in your backyard, this post will help you identify what chicken breeds get along with your existing group.
Best Chicken Breeds to Keep Together: Our Top 15 Picks!
There are a few things you need to know. As much as you want to keep them together, some breeds do not get along. Each species has unique characteristics and can clash with others.
If you want to start a mixed flock, choose breeds with similar personalities so they can quickly get along with each other. However, raising a mixed flock requires some consideration.
For example, some chicken breeds are calm, gentle, and easygoing, while others have dominant personalities.
For the best experience, never combine docile chicken breeds with dominant ones. The last thing you want to witness is a nasty chicken fight in your backyard.
Here are the top 15 chicken breeds to keep together for a mixed flock:
1. Jersey Giants
Jersey Giants are large chicken breeds that can stand at 26 inches and weigh about 15 pounds—but do not get fooled by their size. Many consider them gentle giants.
Jersey Giants are one of the friendliest breeds that can quickly get along with other breeds. They are also known to be friendly with pets and humans, especially children.
Despite being gentle giants, this breed can easily stand for themselves when bullied. In fact, hawks stay away from them due to their large size.
The Jersey Giants makes an excellent choice for people looking for a productive bird or a friendly fowl.
Considered one of the favorite breeds of all time, the Sussex is an easygoing and friendly bird.
They are naturally welcoming and can quickly hit it off with other breeds in the flock. You might even see them following you around or running up to you. You can trust them with your children.
Unfortunately, this breed is susceptible to bullying, so better keep an eye on them.
Orpingtons are friendly, sweet, and love attention.
This kind, gentle chicken breeds love being pet and enjoys hugs and cuddles. Although they mind their own business, it is best to avoid mixing them with aggressive chickens, as they can get bullied easily.
Their submissive nature often puts them at the bottom of the pecking order.
The Brahma chickens are another gentle fluffy giant breed you should add to your mixed flock.
This breed has a way of keeping the peace in the flock, making them rank higher in the pecking order. Brahma strolls calmly through the backyard while keeping a watchful eye for trouble. Their majestic air compels other breeds their utmost respect.
Like the Jersey Giants, Brahmas are large breeds that do not take nonsense from aggressive birds.
In addition to being one of the best chicken breeds to keep together, Silkies has captivated the hearts of many because of its adorable looks.
Although they are smaller than most other chickens, do not get fooled by their size. They may not be aggressive, but they can be adamant in a mixed flock.
Silkies are among the best bantam breeds to include in a backyard flock.
They are fun and get along with other chickens in the flock. They also make great mothers and raise youngsters well.
They are another breed of gentle giant you should incorporate into your flock, making them a good mixer breed due to their friendly nature.
Cochins are calm and good chickens that love to sit on your lap. Their gentle disposition makes them safe around your children.
They also make great foster mothers, even to small animals that look nothing like a chick.
Despite their large size, Cochins are susceptible to bullying.
Make sure to watch out for them when they are around dominant and aggressive chickens.
As one of the most common chicken breeds, Wyandottes make a great choice for many people who want to start a mixed backyard flock.
Known for their easygoing character, Wyandottes are naturally friendly and curious.
Although they can be a little loud sometimes, they can easily get along with other breeds.
However, they tend to get broody sometimes, making them snappy and protective.
Like the Cochins, Wyandottes also make good foster chicken mothers who are happy to sit any other chicken’s egg. They are a great choice if you want to breed chickens.
If you encounter any problems raising them, poultry enthusiasts can provide you with helpful information about these breeds and on raising them.
In addition to being a wonderful all-around chicken breed, the quirky nature and weird antics of the Polish chicken can keep you entertained for hours.
Their calm and gentle nature enables them to get accepted into the flock quickly without trouble, making them a great addition to your mixed flock for a backyard, homestead, or farm.
If Orpingtons appeal to you, you will surely fall in love with Australorps too! This large, heavy bird is known for its soft black feathers.
This big beautiful bird can tolerate lots of handling and easily adjust to spending a week on display in a children’s fair project or at a country fair.
Their adaptable nature makes them a great choice for backyard coop for beginners. Their docile and easygoing traits can bring delight to the flock.
If you are looking for a wonderful egg-laying breed, Australorps can give you an average of 250 eggs every year.
10. Salmon Faverolle
Faverolles is one of the family-friendly favorites and should be included in your backyard flocks.
This heavily feathered breed has beards and muffs, making them look slightly like a toy.
Their beautiful plumage makes Faverolle stand out in the flock. Its feathers feature a rich, honey salmon hue over its head, back, and wings.
Salmon Faverolle has white or cream-colored breast speckles. Its breast, muff, and lower half of the body sport lighter golden or cream colors.
They are also a joy to watch and be around. Its comical nature can charm its way to your heart. These are just one of the reasons Faverolles are extremely popular among people who love interacting with their flock.
While Faverolles are easygoing chickens that love to spend their time in a run, they also enjoy their time at home foraging in the fields.
They are also one of the best egg-producing breeds that lay an average of 180 to 200 eggs each year, or roughly four eggs a week. They lay medium-sized tinted or light brown eggs.
11. Barred Rock
This breed is among the most popular chicken breeds in America.
Although Barred rock chickens are hardy, reliable, and fuss-free birds, they are also sweet, quiet, and easy to be around. These qualities make them ideal for small backyard mixed flocks.
The Barred Rock is a heritage breed created by breeding Black Javas and Dominiques in New England around 1869.
It was initially used as a production bird to provide Americans with meat and eggs during WWII.
This free-range black and white striped chicken breed can easily thrive and produce a good number of eggs.
12. Pearl Star Leghorn
The Pearl Star Leghorn is a cross between Sussex and Partridge Rock. Some consider them as an anomaly among hybrids.
They feature a striking variegated feathering.
These sweet and mild-mannered chickens often bear the brunt of dominant birds, making them prone to bullying in the flock. Be sure to keep a watchful eye on them.
Classified as a small to medium chicken breed, a Pearl Star Leghorn hen can weigh about 5 lbs. They make great egg producers, laying around 220 to 300 large eggs yearly.
13. Barbu D’Uccles
The Barbu D’Uccles is a true Bantam chicken. While this small-sized Belgian breed is popular for its adorable beards, muffs, and boots, the Barbu D’Uccles has a big personality.
They are friendly and great with kids. This sweet little birdy enjoys getting held and petted.
While they make an excellent addition to your mixed flock, make sure to watch out for them, especially if you have larger chickens.
Bigger breeds can pick on the bantams, especially the chicks.
14. Plymouth Rock
Plymouth Rock is a long-term, egg-laying chicken that can live up to 11 years.
This heritage breed is an excellent dual-purpose chicken, making it a top choice for backyard chicken owners for many years.
Not only are they good egg producers but also, they provide quality meat. Plymouth Rocks are interesting because they lay light tan to pink-colored eggs.
While Plymouth Rocks females are sweet and docile, some claim that roosters can get aggressive.
15. Rhode Island Red
The Rhode Island Red can thrive well in any environment. They can survive in freezing weather and sweltering heat. They can continue happily hunting grubs and laying eggs no matter the season.
Calm, docile, sweet, and people-loving chicken, Rhode Island Reds can easily get along with others, even with humans.
Their sunny disposition and exceptional egg production capability make them backyard chicken keepers’ favorite. They can lay as many as seven medium to large-sized brown eggs weekly.
Tips for Raising and Mixing the Friendliest Chicken Breeds
Chickens may not be the most snuggly creatures. However, with some patience and tasty treats, you can successfully domesticate them.
Chickens enjoy human company as long as they feel safe around them. Spending time with your chickens can help you eventually gain their trust.
We rounded up a few helpful tips on raising and taming friendly chickens:
- Choose docile, easygoing, and friendly chicken breeds like the ones listed above.
- The most effective way to raise and tame chickens is to start with chicks. It provides you plenty of time to tame chicks than retaining an adult bird that is unfamiliar to you.
- Spend as much time with them as you can every day. The more time you spend around them, the more they will recognize your presence.
- Give them delicious treats and feed them with your hand. Like dogs and cats, chickens also like treats. Letting them eat out of your hand helps make positive associations with you.
- If you want a peaceful and harmonious flock, consider keeping only female chickens. Roosters tend to be aggressive and territorial. While cockerels may be sweet and friendly, they can turn into aggressive birds when they reach adulthood.
- Protect your flocks from predator attacks by providing them with a safe place. Unexpected predator attacks can be extremely stressful to chickens. A single fox attack can send your flock into a frenzy, leaving them scared and at risk. Be sure they have a place where they can retreat, feel safe, and away from predators.
Related: The Top 10 Friendliest Chicken Breeds
How Do You Mix New And Old Good Chickens?
Introducing new chicks or adding several new hens to your existing flock requires careful planning, care, and management to ensure a successful transition.
Manage New Chickens Separately
Never introduce new birds immediately to the flock to prevent exposing the existing ones to common poultry diseases.
Keep them in a separate room or coop for 30 days to keep either group safe and healthy. Isolating the new chickens enables you to monitor their health and how well they are able to adapt to the new environment.
On the other hand, chicks should be kept in a brooder for 18 weeks until they reach maturity and transition onto a layer feed before introducing them to other flock members.
Introduce New Chickens to the Group
After keeping them isolated, gradually introduce new birds to your old flock. Chickens can easily adapt when introduced to a group of birds that are similar in size and traits, ensuring a smooth transition.
Another way to help new and existing groups to familiarize each other is by placing them in side-by-side runs for a week. This can help them form bonds before being housed together.
You can also let the new group of chickens free-range and then add the existing flock to the new surrounding.
Monitor the Flock
Take time to monitor the group closely after the introduction to ensure both groups are happy, healthy, and content.
Also, take note of their routine and ensure that there are no changes in their personalities and feeding consumption.
Related: Beginner’s Guide to Raising Backyard Chickens
Best Chicken Breeds to Keep Together: Summary
We hope this list can help you find the best chicken breeds to keep together.
Whether you want sweet chickens who always follow you around your yard or one that does not mind being handled, there is a breed for each personality type.
Be sure to provide them with plenty of space to roam, fresh food and water, and love to keep your chickens happy.
Eventually, you will reap the benefits of having an enjoyable mixed flock of good chickens.
Are you ready to start with your backyard flock of mixed chicken breeds? Do you have more suggestions on how to raise a mixed flock of chickens? Please let us know in the comment section!