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5 Bantam Breeds that Tolerate Warm Weather

Silkie Chickens

In addition to the miniature versions of large warm weather chicken breeds, five other bantam breeds also do well when the temperature rises. Of those described below, four of the five bantam breeds that tolerate warm weather are true bantams. Bantam Chickens The history of bantam chickens follows that of the Industrial Revolution. As families […]

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Why Chicks Peep Before Hatching

Hatching Chick

Chicks, ducklings, and babies of other barnyard birds are precocial, meaning they are able to feed themselves almost from the moment of hatch. Precociality is the reason why chicks peep before hatching. The word precocial comes from the Latin word praecox, meaning early to mature. A fancier word for precocial is nidifugous — from the […]

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5 Chicken Breeds that Have 5 Toes

Salmon Faverolle Chicken

Most chickens have four toes on each foot. Of the chicken breeds found in the United States, five breeds typically have five toes on each foot. The condition is technically known as polydactylism — from the Greek words poly meaning many, and daktylos meaning a finger or toe. The trait of having five toes represents […]

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6 Pros and 6 Cons of Raising Peafowl

India Blue Peacock

Peafowl (Pavo cristatus) are large, attractive birds that originated in India and Sri-Lanka. They are about the same size as turkeys (Meleagridis gallopavo), to which they are closely related. The term peafowl denotes the species. The male is a peacock, the female is a peahen. The babies are peachicks. Like everything in life, raising peafowl […]

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15 Chicken Breeds that Lay Large Eggs

Jersey Giant Hen

All hens start out laying small eggs. As the birds mature, the egg size increases until it reaches the normal size for the breed. Many breeds will end up laying small or medium size eggs, while most baking recipes call for large eggs. Chicken keepers who do a lot of baking therefore prefer chicken breeds […]

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10 Least Broody Chicken Breeds

White Leghorn Hen

A broody hen stops laying eggs when she starts setting. Therefore, throughout the ages poultry keepers who have raised chickens primarily for eggs have culled persistently broody hens. In other words, they selectively bred in favor of non-setters. As a result, the breeds best known for superior laying ability are less apt to brood than […]

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How to Candle Eggs for Hatching or Eating

Egg Candling

An egg’s internal qualities cannot be determined by looking at the outside of the egg. Detecting such things as blood spots, double yolks, hairline cracks, and thin shells requires candling the eggs. Candling means examining the contents of an egg by placing it against a bright light. It’s called candling because the bright light was […]

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Can a Rooster Lay an Egg?

Rooster laying an Egg

The earliest documented instance of a “rooster” laying an egg occurred in Basel, Switzerland, in 1474. The “rooster” was sentenced to death for the “unnatural crime of laying an egg.” A similar event took place, again in Switzerland, in 1730. In the United States, in 1922 a brown Leghorn “rooster” in Madison, Wisconsin, began laying […]

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