Newest Arrivals

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Welsummer & Wyndottes 004

Our flock of chickens grew this week. Four new arrivals, 2 Welsummer and 2 Blue Wyandotte pullets were added to the coop. I hadn’t really planned on adding more hens this early, but when I realized some of my girls were getting on in years, slowing down their egg production, and my friend and chicken breeder Larry had 3-month old’s in the breeds I was thinking about, the plan sped up by a few months.

I’ve never really been interested in the plain production breeds like Leghorns, Barred Rocks or Rhode Island Reds. I want hens that are colorful, not only in their feathers, but also in their eggs. I already have Americana’s that lay blue-green eggs, and Black Cochin’s and New Hampshire’s that lay light brown eggs. The only thing missing was a breed that lays the dark chocolate brown eggs, like those Cadbury chocolates wrapped in shiny gold paper.

There are only two breeds that lay such dark brown eggs—Marans and Welsummer’s. Marans tend to be a little pricey for egg layers and relatively hard to come by, but Welsummer’s are more common. They are a Dutch breed…a combination of several breeds really. But, over time they have been refined and standardized by poultry breeders who took a fancy to them as soon as they were imported. Through selective breeding they have become a nice temperate addition to farm flocks, and the dark brown eggs they lay are an added bonus.


(Welsummer hens)

The Blue Wyandotte is a variety of the Wyandotte breed, meaning they are a “color” of the breed. Wyandotte’s come in a several different colors from golden and silver laced, to white, black and buff. There are even Columbian, partridge and silver penciled giving any poultry lover a wide range of colors and feather patterns to choose from.

Wyandotte’s are an American breed used for both egg production and meat. Although I like them for their solid medium brown eggs, I also think they are just what a chicken should be…plump, fluffy and fun to watch scratching in the garden.

Blue Wyndotte Hen







(Blue Wyandotte Hen)

Right now they are housed in six foot long wire caged that was used when we raised meat rabbits. The cage will keep them safe at this young age, away from circling hawks and feral cats, and allow the other chickens to get use to new additions. Although I don’t think Sophia (our goose) is to keen on the idea of more chickens in the coop.

So…in a few months the flock will add a wonderful dark brown color to my daily collection of farm fresh eggs.

Breakfast can’t get any better than that!


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