Types of Chickens that Lay Eggs

The types of chickens that are good egg laying breeds will produce anywhere from 250 to 300 eggs per year which can depend on environmental circumstances and their diet. 

This is a picture of a White Leghorn and an Easter Egger chicken that we use to have in our backyard or rather in our back patio which taught me a lot about different chicken personalities and about what not to do in the future.

The White Leghorn chicken can lay 300 or more of large white eggs per year, but she was always hungry and a little flighty.  I found that as long as I feed this bird enough, she would continue to lay eggs throughout the year.  However, I didn't like her personality and she would pick on our Easter Egger.

Our Easter Egger was such a sweet bird and not very demanding.  She was also a good egg layer and layed medium sized green eggs.  And she could almost keep up with the White Leghorn, but would occasionally take a day or two off from egg production.

Types of Chickens - Australorps

Australorps are an Australian breed of chicken and the black colored Australorp is the most common.  They are a dual purpose type of chicken that is used for their eggs and for their meat.

They are very dependable egg layers and will lay eggs regardless of weather patterns.  They typically lay 250 large light brown eggs per year, but do hold the record for most eggs laid by a chicken which was 364 eggs in 365 days!

They are a friendly, easy to handle, and calm type of chicken.  They bear confinement well, but also like to forage.  They can live in most climates and do well in colder climates.  And they should get along well with other flocks, but like to be on top of the pecking order.

Types of Chickens - Leghorns

Leghorn chickens are a breed that originates from Italy and there are many types of leghorns.  However, the white leghorn is probably the most common type you'll find these days.  Leghorns are classically beautiful and have a large floppy red comb.

These chickens are known for being excellent egg layers and my Leghorn actually gave me two eggs in one day!  Leghorns can produce 300 to 320 large white eggs per year.  And the white leghorns are the most common chickens used for commercial egg production.

These birds are somewhat flighty or nervous in nature and are considered very active birds.  They are also somewhat smaller in size with hens typically weighing in at 4 1/2 pounds.  And as I mentioned earlier, my Leghorn picked on my more docile Easter Egger.  And Leghorns like to eat a lot.

Leghorns do make great foragers and would probably be happier with more living space.  And they can be raised in many climates, but may not favor extremely cold weather.

Types of Chickens - Rhode Island Reds

Rhode Island Reds are a very popular American breed of chicken.  And this dual breed is raised for meat and for eggs.  Rhode Island Reds usually have rust colored feathers and are a large breed of chicken.

They are excellent egg layers and can lay anywhere from 200 to 300 large brown eggs per year.  These chickens are more resistant to illness and are extremely cold hardy birds, but not especially heat hardy.  Rhode Island Reds are generally good natured and easy going chickens, but sometimes they can be aggressive. 

We had a chicken that was a cross between a Rhode Island Red and a Sex Link to go with our Leghorn and Easter Egger.  She was very sweet when we first brought her home, but became very aggressive when we brought in the other birds. 

To the point where we had to kick her out of the coop and find her another home.

We decide to give her away to someone who had a large flock with lots of land because she was such a good forager.  And boy she liked to eat!


Types of Chickens - Gold Sex Links or Golden Comet

Gold Sex Links are a dual purpose chicken that's used for meat and for their eggs.  These chickens are referred to as sex links due to females hatching as one color and the males hatching in another.  This makes it easy to distinguish their sex when they are born.

Gold Sex Links are a consistent producer of large brown eggs and can lay up to 300 eggs per year.  This type of chicken handles confinement well and is a more docile type of bird.  They are well suited for small coops, but can also fit into free ranging farms.

They are a hardy bird that can withstand cold temperatures and are very broody to the point where they may sit on other chicken's eggs.

Types of Chickens - Barred Plymouth Rocks

Barred Plymouth Rocks are an American breed of chicken and are recognized by their black and white stripes.  These chickens are dual purpose chickens that are raised for meat and their eggs.

Barred Plymouth Rocks are good egg layers.  They can lay 200 to 250 large brown eggs per year and all year round.  And some will lay pink colored eggs.

Barred Plymouth Rocks are a mellow and friendly breed of chicken.  They are considered a rather docile type of bird, so this makes them an ideal backyard chicken for a city or sub-division.  And they can integrate well with other flocks of birds.  This breed can tolerate confinement, but is happiest when foraging.

They are a somewhat heavy bird and adult hens can weigh as much as 7 to 8 lbs.  This hardy breed is able to adapt quickly to their environment.  However, they do better in moderate to cold weather.

Types of Chickens - Speckled Sussex

The Speckled Sussex is a very old English breed and a dual purpose chicken that's also raised for its meat.  The speckled coloring of this bird makes them blend in with the environment and helps to camouflage them from predators.

This chicken can lay 250 large light brown or tinted eggs per year.  And they will continue to produce eggs even in the cold weather. 

They handle confinement well, but are also comfortable with free ranging because they are good foragers.  The Speckled Sussex is an alert, very gentle, chatty, and docile bird that loves being part of a family.  However, other birds may pick on this breed, so don't keep it with aggressive chickens like White Leghorns. 

This bird will do well in most climates.  And they tend to get broody in the warmer months.

Types of Chickens - Easter Eggers

The Easter Egger is sometimes mistaken for Araucana or Ameraucana chickens because they can also lay blue colored eggs.  However, this chicken is a mixed bird that does not conform to a breed standard and cannot be shown.  Easter Eggers usually have muffs and a pea comb.  And they will come in many colors.

These chickens are good egg layers and can produce 250 medium to large colored eggs per year.  Your Easter Egger can produce either blue, green, sage, olive, brown, cream, and rose colored eggs.  However, it's important to note that Easter Eggers will not switch the color of the eggs they lay throughout their lifetime. 

Easter Eggers have a great temperament and are very smart birds.  They are also heat and cold hearty birds which means they can live in many climates.  They bear confinement well and also like to forage.

Types of Chickens - Ameraucana

The Ameraucana is a rare and beautiful American breed that was developed in the 1970's.  And this chicken's head reminds me of a hawk more than a chicken.  This breed was derived from the Araucana chickens brought over from Chile, and unlike the Araucana the American breed has a tail, muffs, and does not have the breeding problems inherent to Araucanas.

What they have in common is the pea comb and the blue egg gene.  The Ameraucana is a dual purpose chicken that lays about 250 medium sized eggs per year in shades of blue which can include slate blue.

Ameraucanas are usually only available through "actual" breeders and baby chicks will come in either blue, black, or splash coloring.  Ameraucanas are a curious, quiet, docile, and sometimes skittish breed of chicken.  They are very well-rounded and able to adapt to many climates.  They are a hardy winter bird and bears confinement well.  And they are not very broody.

Best Types of Chickens for Your Backyard

Of course, these are only a handful of egg laying types of chickens to consider for your backyard or for egg production.  There are many other breeds or types of chickens, so do some research. 

Since we had those three chickens, I've experienced working on a somewhat large egg farm in Northern California that sold pastured eggs.  And they made sure there was at least 4 to 6 different colored eggs per dozen to keep their customers happy and interested.  If I ever choose to sell eggs, that's the way I'd definitely do it!

My favorite egg laying backyard chicken so far was the Easter Egger chicken.  I liked its personality way better than our White Leghorn or the Rhode Island Red mixed with Sex Link chicken.

However, the Leghorn and the Sex Link mix were incredible egg producing machines.  And those two would have probably worked out if we had a big backyard for them to forage on.

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