Breed makes a big difference when it comes to choosing the perfect flock for you. Different breeds offer different personalities, egg laying capacities, climate tolerances and egg colors. It’s a good idea to understand your expectations for your flock before you decide which breed to get. This will help you pick a good mix of breeds for your family.
The two breeds in our flock are Buff Orphingtons and Aracuanas. Though we hate to pick favorites, we love our Buff Orphington ladies. They are sociable and very affectionate for chickens. They like to be held and interact with us much more than our Aracuanas. Though our Aracuanas are pretty sociable and always greet us when we come outside, they don’t like to be handled. Both of our chicken breeds are dual purpose, which means you can raise them for meat and for eggs. We’ve become pretty attached to ours and neither of us have the stomach to eat them.
There are also certain breeds that do not do well in flocks together. It’s important not to mix more aggressive chickens with your calm, laid back ladies like Buff Orphington chickens. Our current mix of Aracuanas and Buff Orphingtons works pretty well. This is because they are both friendlier, mellow chickens.
Choosing the right breed for your family will make you a much happier chicken owner. If you’d like to do additional research, you can find information on breeds and order your chicks at Murray McMurray Hatchery, Mt. Healthy Hatcheries, Inc. or Cackle Hatchery. All of these hatcheries were recommended by the University of Florida Agricultural Department and all contain great information on chicken breeds and availability.