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MM 41

Red Chicken Breeds

by | Feb 9, 2021 | Meyer Moment

Let’s take a Meyer Moment to talk about red chicken breeds. In the spirit of Valentine’s Day, today we will explore history and facts of some of the red breeds offered by Meyer Hatchery. Chicken colors range almost the full spectrum of the rainbow, but there is something quintessential about a red chicken.

Read Full Episode Transcript

Hey everyone! Welcome back to The Coop with Meyer Hatchery – where we talk all things poultry in hopes of inspiring crazy chicken keepers and educating future flock owners. Each week we like to take a Meyer Moment to cover relevant happenings. 

Let’s take a Meyer Moment to talk about red chicken breeds. In the spirit of Valentine’s Day, today we will explore history and facts of some of the red breeds offered by Meyer Hatchery. Chicken colors range almost the full spectrum of the rainbow, but there is something quintessential about a red chicken. It can be argued that Rhode Island Red is the most well-known chicken breed in the United States. 

The Rhode Island Red frequents our top-seller list and is one of the oldest American breeds. Originating in Little Compton, Rhode Island in the mid-1800s, this bird was bred as the original dual-purpose breed. American homesteads needed reliable egg production but also roosters of considerable size for their tables. Rhode Island Red Hens are generally docile and friendly, while roosters are great protectors of their flock towards anything they perceive as a threat.  

Also hailing from New England, the New Hampshire Red is slightly lighter in coloring. Bred from early flocks of Rhode Island Red, selected for traits of early maturity and hardiness in extreme cold. By the mid-20th century, the heavy and hardy New Hampshire Red had gained popularity. Poultry breeders took notice of its merit for early maturity, setting the stage for growth rates in present-day broilers. 

Keeping with the theme of the Rhode Island Red lending their heritage to breed development, the Golden Buff is a modern-day wonder of egg production. The Golden Buff is known by many names including Red Star, ISA Brown, Cinnamon Queen, Golden Comet, and more. Meyer Hatchery’s strain has White Leghorn and Rhode Island Red bloodlines. The Golden Buff exceeds the laying rate of most other breeds, producing large and extra-large brown eggs. 

The buckeye state of Ohio is home to Meyer Hatchery, so the Buckeye breed has a special place on our list. Straying away from Rhode Island Red heritage, the Buckeye does have similar mahogany coloring but was bred from the ancestry of Plymouth Rock, Cochin, and Red Game Fowl. Boasting dual-purpose size and egg production, the Buckeye is also extremely cold hardy. The American Poultry Association officially recognized the Buckeye in 1904 and has the unique standing as the only recognized breed developed by a woman. 

Lastly, the Partridge coloring is a beautiful, intricate feather pattern that has 3 pencilings: the center black, then alternately reddish bay and black, ending with a reddish bay edging around the entire surface. Meyer Hatchery offers 3 breeds with partridge coloring, Partridge Rock, Partridge Cochin, and Partridge Penedesenca. Each of these breeds makes a unique addition to any flock. 

 We hope you enjoyed this Meyer Moment about red chicken breeds and appreciate the history and facts of these awesome chickens. 

Enjoy the rest of your week and as always, thank you for listening to The Coop!

Hosts & Guests

Kendra + Jeff
From Meyer Hatchery

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