Easter Egger

An Easter Egger is any chicken that possesses the "blue egg" gene, but doesn't fully meet any breed description as defined in the American Poultry Association (APA) and/or the American Bantam Association (ABA) standards. The name derives from the resemblance of their colorful eggs to Easter eggs. Araucanas, Ameraucanas, and Easter Eggers are descended from the same founder stock that spread around the world from Chile and the Falklands. Three main founder breeds were involved in the creation of what we today call Araucanas, Ameraucanas, British tailed Araucanas, and the Easter Eggers. These would be the Quechua, the Quetro, and the Colloncas. In about 1976 some Chilean Araucanas were imported to the United States and are still here today unchanged. They appear except for color to be Ameraucanas or British tailed Araucanas. Some Easter Eggers breed true to type and color over fifty percent of the time. Molecular data retrieved from specimens of known provenance in the Falklands, United Kingdom, Shetland Isles, and Canada proved to be closely related. Consequently, the Ameraucana is probably closer genetically to the South American founders than the North American Araucana. None of these, Araucana, Ameraucana, or British tailed Araucanas were actually a breed in South America.

Often confused with the rare, pure breeds of Araucana and the not so rare Ameraucana, the majority of chickens in laying flocks that lay blue or green eggs are Easter Eggers. Even if a bird meets an APA or ABA Standard of Perfection breed description, but doesn't meet a variety description, or breed true at least fifty percent of the time, it is technically considered an Easter Egger. These chickens also may exhibit the muffs and beards similar to the Araucana and Ameraucana.
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Wyandotte (chicken)

The Wyandotte is a breed of chicken originating in the United States. The first examples of the breed appeared in 1870s. Wyandottes are a docile, dual-purpose breed kept for both eggs (Wyandottes are brown egg layers) and meat. They also appear in a wide variety of color patterns, and are popular show birds.


The Wyandotte is a medium sized breast with a rose comb and clean legs. The chicken feathers are broad and loosely fitting. The area around the vent is very fluffy. The legs are yellow, although some silver laced may have grey.


There are eight colors recognized by the APA (American Poultry Association) which are golden laced, silver laced, white, black, buff, Columbian, partridge and silver penciled. In bantams there is also buff Columbian, black breasted red, blue red, lemon blue, barred,brown red, and birchen that are recognized by the American Bantam Association. However, there are more colors than that which are either recognised by similar organisations in other countries like the PCGB (Poultry Club of Great Britain). These colors include blue laced red and buff laced. Overall there are 17 colors.


The Wyandotte is a breed that suits both free range and confinement in a run. They occasionally go broody. They tend to be quite friendly, and not flighty, and so make good pets for people. They are also very vocal, uttering soft clucks on a regular basis.

Utility aspects

The hens (females) will lay around 200 eggs a year with an exceptional hen laying around 240 eggs a year. The eggs are brown or tinted. The hens weigh around 6 pounds and the cocks weigh around 8 1/2 pounds. The hens also make great setters. It is sometimes difficult for natural insemination to occur, due to the number and thickness of feathers in the tail area. For the same reason, they are prone to accumulation of feces on vent-area feathers that needs to be regularly washed off, or the vent could become clogged.


Silver Laced: The silver laced wyandotte has white feathers with black edges to every feather, an effect called lacing. The tail is black and they should have yellow legs. The silver laced was developed in New York state in the early 1870s and was admitted to the standard in 1883. The silver laced wyandotte was the base for all other colors.

Golden Laced: The golden laced wyandotte is a golden color with black around the edge of every feather and black tail. Joseph McKeen of Wisconsin was the originator of the Golden Laced Wyandotte. In 1880 he crossed Silver Laced Wyandotte females with a large "Black Red" patterned fowl of unknown origin called the Winnebago. The variety was admitted to the American Standard in 1888.

Blue Laced Red: The blue laced red is a buff/red color with a blue that looks just like grey around the edge of every feather.

Buff Laced: The buff laced is buff but with white around the edge of the feathers.

White: The white is white all over. The whites are the rarest color in the UK.

Black: The black is black all over.

Buff: The buff is a buff color all over. A buff is like a ginger orange color.

Columbian: Columbian is white, but with a black tail, black wing tips and the neck is mainly black with some white.

Partridge: A red color but with three black stripes, meeting at the middle of the feather and then going outwards at an angle in the hen, and the cock looks like a typical farmyard cock.

Silver Pencilled: Like the partridge, but with a silver undercolor in the hen and the cock is a white color but with bits of black in there until the tail and the wing which are black.

Blue: The hen is blue all over but the cock is black with the tail and wing blue on some birds.

Barred: The barred, in both genders, has feathers which have black and white stripes across the width of the feather, all over the body.

Mille Fleur: The mille fleur wyandotte is a dark brown color with black crescents with white spots on the tips.

Buff Columbian: Like the Columbian except buff.

Red: The red wyandotte is a dark red/brown all over.

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Dominique (chicken)

The Dominique, also known as the Dominicker, is a breed of chicken originating in the United Kingdom. It is considered America's oldest breed of chicken, having been brought to New England from southern England during colonial times. By the 19th century, they were widely popular and were raised in many parts of the country. Dominiques are a dual purpose breed, being valued for their meat as well as for their brown eggs. They weigh 6 to 8 pounds (2.7 to 3.6 kg) at maturity. In earlier times, their feathers were much sought after as stuffing for pillows and mattresses.


Dominiques, sometimes called Dominickers, are quite distinctive in appearance, having a rose comb and a heavy plumage of irregularly striped black-and-white feathers (a pattern called "barring" or sometimes "hawk coloring"). The breed matures quickly, producing eggs at about six months of age.

At first glance, Dominiques and Barred Rocks appear strikingly similar, often leading to confusion when discerning a particular breed. The strongest indicators are the Comb,Plumage and Colour


Dominiques possess a rose comb while Barred Rocks possess a single comb.


Dominiques exhibit staggered barring in their plumage, lending to a somewhat mottled appearance. Barred Rocks exhibit crisp, parallel barring.


Dominiques exhibit a softer contrast of "not quite black on not quite white", while Barred Rocks exhibit a high-contrast black-on-white color.

Disposition and Behavior

Dominique hens tend to be calm, personable birds (a desirable trait in an egg production bird). Their calm, steady demeanor makes them successful as show birds or family pets. However, some Dominique roosters tend to be aggressive.

The hens tend to be good mothers, brooding and raising chicks with a high rate of success.

The Dominique is hardy and a good forager, traits which are attributed to the harsh conditions in which the breed first developed.


After the Plymouth Rock breed was developed from the Dominiques in the 1870s, the Dominiques' popularity declined, until by 1950 they were so rare as to be considered nearly extinct. During the 1970s, Dominiques were listed in "Critical" status by the American Livestock Breeds Conservancy, with fewer than 500 breeding birds in North America. However, due to a revival of interest in them and other rare breeds, the Dominiques have made a comeback and are now listed on the "Watch" list, indicating lesser danger of extinction.

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Rhode Island Red

The Rhode Island Red is a breed of chicken. They are a utility bird, raised for meat and eggs, and also as show birds. They are a popular choice for backyard flocks because of their egg laying abilities and hardiness. Non-industrial strains of the Rhode Island Red are listed as recovering by the American Livestock Breeds Conservancy. It is the state bird of Rhode Island.


The bird's feathers are rust-colored, but darker shades are known, including maroon bordering on black. Their eyes are red-orange and they have yellow feet, with reddish-brown beaks. Chicks are a light red to tan color with two dark brown bars running down their backs. The Roosters usually weigh in at 8.5 pounds (3.9 kg), the Hens slightly less at 6.5 pounds (2.9 kg), cockerel at 7.5 pounds (3.4 kg), and pullets at 5.5 pounds (2.5 kg).


Developed in Massachusetts and Rhode Island, early flocks often had both single and rose combed individuals because of the influence of Malay blood. It was from the Malay that the Rhode Island Red got its deep color, strong constitution, and relatively hard feathers.

The Rhode Island Red was originally bred in Adamsville, a village which is part of Little Compton, Rhode Island. One of the foundation sires of the breed was a black-breasted red Malay cock which was imported from England. This cock is on display at the Smithsonian Institution as the father of the Rhode Island Red breed.

In 1925, the Rhode Island Red Club of America donated funds for an elegant monument to the Rhode Island Red in Adamsville, near the baseball field and across the street from what used to be Abraham Manchester's restaurant. (The monument is now on the National Register of Historic Places.) A competing monument to the Rhode Island Red, claiming its creation not for the poultry fanciers, but for the farmers who grew them commercially in great numbers in Little Compton, was erected by the state in 1954 a mile or so (about two kilometers) south of Adamsville.

Rhode Island Reds and Sussex are also used for many modern hybrid breeds. Many modern hybrid hens have Rhode Island Red fathers, mainly due to the prolific egg laying characteristic of the Rhode Island Red, which is passed down through the males.[citation needed]


The Reds are friendly chickens with a good nature. They are very good pets for children, but they can get angry when annoyed.

Rhode Island Reds are tough birds, resistant to illness, good at foraging and free ranging, and typically docile, quiet, and friendly. Although they are widely known as good layers through cold periods, if the coop temperature drops below freezing (0 °C (32 °F)), their output drops considerably, and the tips of their combs become very susceptible to frostbite.

Although usually friendly, Rhode Island Red roosters, and sometimes hens, can be quite aggressive towards young children and adults. Most roosters will also attack strangers (humans or animals) if they feel nervous or have never seen the intruder. They are usually friendlier with familiar people, such as those responsible for feeding. Both hens and roosters are known to be aggressive with other chickens, especially in confinement.


Rhode Island Reds are excellent egg layers. Although they can sometimes be stubborn, they can end up producing up to 250 to 300 large, light to dark brown eggs per year. When free ranged, their first year eggs can be too large to fit comfortably in a standard or medium egg carton. Nine hens can lay up to 6-7 eggs per day depending on their conditions of care and treatment.

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Delaware (chicken)

The Delaware is a breed of chicken originating in the U.S. state of Delaware. It was once of relative importance to the U.S. chicken industry, but today is critically endangered. It is primarily suited to meat production but also lays reasonably well. It has plumage of a unique pattern, and is accepted in to poultry standards for showing.


With males weighing 8.5 pounds (3.9 kilos) and hens 6.5 pounds (3 kilos), the Delaware is a medium sized breed. They have rather large, bright red colored single combs and wattles. Delawares appear in a single color type: a white body and breast, with light black barring on the ends of the hackle, wings and tails. It is similar to the Columbian color seen in some breeds, but has barring in the dark portions, rather than uniform black. Also of note is that all feathers have a white quill and shaft, which, combined with yellow skin, makes for a cleaner appearing carcass. Like most standard breeds of chicken, the Delaware has a miniaturized bantam version; however, these are rarely seen.

Delawares are hardy birds that mature quickly. Hens are good layers of large to jumbo brown eggs and will go broody. Unlike the most common commercial meat birds in use today, the Delaware does well in free range operations. In temperament, it is a calm and friendly breed.


In the early 20th century, crosses of Barred Plymouth Rock roosters on New Hampshire hens was a common choice for producing broilers. Occasionally, this mating produces sports with light coloration. By breeding these white (genetically silver) sports intentionally, George Ellis of Delaware created the breed in 1940. He first chose to call them Indian Rivers, but later the name was switched to match its state of origin. At the time, the Delmarva Peninsula, where the breed was created, supplied chicken to the entirety of the East Coast of the United States through companies such as Perdue Farms. The Delaware rapidly became the premiere broiler fowl in use in the region, thus affecting the industry at large. In 1952, it was recognized for exhibition by acceptance in to the American Poultry Association's Standard of Perfection.

Beginning in the mid-1950s, commercial farms began to use the White Cornish-Rock cross that would come to dominate the chicken industry into the next century. The speedy adoption of the Cornish-Rock saw the decline of the Delaware, though it persisted in some areas into the 1960s. In the 21st century, the Delaware is considered a critically endangered breed by organizations such as the American Livestock Breeds Conservancy. It is also included in Slow Food USA's Ark of Taste, a list of heritage foods in danger of extinction.

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Plymouth Rock (chicken)

The Plymouth Rock, often called simply Rocks or Barred Rocks (after their most popular color), is a chicken breed that originated in the United States. The Plymouth Rock is a dual-purpose, cold-hardy bird and therefore makes a great breed for the small farm or backyard flock owner. These chickens are often called Plymouth Rocks, but this title correctly belongs to the entire breed, not just the Barred variety. There are seven varieties of Plymouth Rock chickens: barred, blue, buff, Columbian, partridge, silver-penciled and white.


The Plymouth Rock was developed in New England in the middle of the 19th century and was first exhibited as a breed in 1869. Several individuals claimed its invention, using crosses of Dominiques, Black Javas, Cochins, and perhaps Malays and Dorkings. John C. Bennett (1804-1867) has been credited with either creating or popularizing the breed. Plymouth Rocks were bred as a dual-purpose fowl, meaning that they were valued both for their meat and for the hens' egg-laying ability. The first Plymouth Rock was barred and other varieties were developed later. The breed became popular very rapidly, and in fact, until World War II, no breed was ever kept and bred as extensively in the United States as the Barred Plymouth Rock. Its popularity came from its qualities as an outstanding farm chicken: hardiness, docility, broodiness, and excellent production of both eggs and meat.

Most of the other varieties were developed from crosses containing some of the same ancestral background as the barred variety. Early in its development, the name Plymouth Rock implied a barred bird, but as more varieties were developed, it became the designation for the breed. The Barred Plymouth Rock was one of the foundation breeds for the broiler industry in the 1920s, and the White Rock continues to be used as the female side of the commercial broiler cross.


Plymouth Rocks are large, long-lived chickens. Some varieties are good layers while others are bred principally for meat. They possess a long, broad back; a moderately deep, full breast; and yellow skin and legs. The hens have a deep, full abdomen, which is a sign of a good layer. The face of a Plymouth Rock is red with red ear lobes, a bright yellow beak, bay-colored eyes, and a single comb of moderate size. Their feathers are fairly loosely held but not so long as to easily tangle.

Generally, Plymouth Rocks are not aggressive, and tame quite easily. They are docile and may show broodiness. The hens usually make good mothers. However, some males and females are big and active enough to be quite a problem if they become aggressive.

Breeders should be aware of the standard weights and not select small or narrow birds for the breeding pen. Common faults include a shallow breast, high tails, narrow bodies and small size. Friendly and curious.


The varieties of Plymouth Rocks refer to differences in feather markings.

  • Barred
  • White
  • Buff
  • Partridge
  • Silver Penciled (or Silver Laced)
  • Blue
  • Columbian
  • Black


Plymouth Rocks lay a large egg that varies in color from light to medium brown, sometimes with a touch of pink. The birds continue laying all through the winter with decreased production. On average, each hen will lay around 200 eggs per year.


The standard weights for Plymouth Rocks, as established by the American Poultry Association, are as follows: cock - 9-1/2 pounds; hen - 7-1/2 pounds; cockerel - 8 pounds; and pullet - 5-6 pounds.


Choice among families who choose to raise chickens at home as pets. The birds are well-adaptable to confinement or free range, are docile, friendly, and easily-handled.

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New Hampshire (chicken)

The New Hampshire breed of chicken originated in the state of New Hampshire in the United States. Poultry farmers, starting with Rhode Island Reds and performing generation after generation of selective breeding, intensified the characteristics of early maturity, rapid full feathering, and production of large brown eggs. One New Hampshire breeder described his birds as being especially endowed with "spizzerinktum"; they were unusually handsome and vigorous[citation needed]. The mature birds are a rich chestnut red, of a somewhat lighter and more even shade than the Rhode Island Reds. The baby chicks are also a lighter red.
Standard weights

Cock: 8-1/2 pounds; hen: 6-1/2 pounds; cockerel: 7-1/2 pounds; pullet: 5-1/2 pounds.

Skin Color


Egg Shell Color

Light Brown


A dual purpose chicken, selected more for meat production than egg production. Medium heavy in weight, it dresses a nice, plump carcass as either a broiler or a roaster.


New Hampshires are a relatively new breed, having been admitted to the Standard in 1935. They represent a specialized selection out of the Rhode Island Red breed. By intensive selection for rapid growth, fast feathering, early maturity and vigor, a different breed gradually emerged. This took place in the New England states, chiefly in Massachusetts and New Hampshire, from which it takes its name.


They possess a deep, broad body, grow feathers very rapidly, are prone to go broody and make good mothers. Most pin feathers are a reddish buff in color and, therefore, do not detract from the carcass appearance very much. The color is a medium to light red and often fades in the sunshine. The comb is single and medium to large in size; in the females it often lops over a bit. These good, medium-sized meat chickens have fair egg-laying ability. Some strains lay eggs of a dark brown shell color. New Hampshires are competitive and aggressive. They were initially used in the Chicken of Tomorrow contests, which led the way for the modern broiler industry.

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