The Best Breed of Chicken for Aussie Backyards
If only I had a dollar for each time I get asked "What's the best breed of layer that's not an Isa Brown?"
Where do I start! It's important to remember that bloodlines are very important, arguably more important than the breed. However this is a great little guide to what you can expect from a 'handful' of my favourites.
In no particular order, these are my favourite breeds of chicken for Australian backyards:
- Ancona – love to perch in tall trees (wing trimming essential to avoid this) but their quirks will keep one entertained for hours. Excellent layers of medium sized white eggs.
- Araucana – Blue egg layer, excellent in the garden.
- Australian Langshan – Feathered feet, and large eyes. The bantam variety in particular are very efficient little layers.
- Australorp – Heavy breed. Most are very gentle and docile. Unlikely to fly given their weight. Extra special care is required to keep heavy breeds cool during Australian summers.
- Hamburgh – Hilarious and so pretty. They cope well with hot summers. They do like to fly if bored with their backyard.
- Wyandotte – Tendency to go broody (clucky), and great mothers. Average layers of medium sized eggs.
- Silkie – Often catch the attention of children. They are primarily an ornamental breed, with black skin and fine fluffy feathers. Poor flyers, which can be an advantage!
- ISA Browns – Isa Browns are not a breed, but a hybrid commercial layer. They are most often very docile and easily handled by children.