Did you know there are dozens of different chicken breeds? Some chickens are small, some have wild temperaments, and others are much larger than the average chicken. If you would like to have one of the largest chicken breeds on your land, you should know that you have options.
There are several large chicken breeds in existence, many of which are great to keep as pets when you have the extra land for them.
If you’re looking for the smallest chicken breeds see my earlier post: Small Chicken Breeds.
The Jersey Giant
The Jersey Giant is one of the largest chicken breeds ever to exist. These chickens received their name because they were initially created in Burlington County, a district in the state of New Jersey. Although these chickens are rare, they are amazing creatures that tend to weigh up to 15 pounds. The average female Jersey Giant weighs roughly 11 pounds, with males weighing up to 15 pounds. In some instances, these chickens may weigh even more than that.
These chickens are great to have on your land because they are calm and docile. They are easy to handle and enjoy being around humans. If you want large chickens with a calm temperament, this breed is perfect for you. An added bonus to having Jersey Giants on your property is that they lay up to 260 eggs per year.
When looking for some of the largest chicken breeds, look no further than the Brahma chicken. The breed first developed in the United States using chickens that came from China. It was quite common for these chickens to get slaughtered for meat production for several decades.
However, it has not been as common since the early 1900s. The average Brahma chicken is up to 30 inches tall and weighs up to 12 pounds. Although this breed is not as large as the Jersey Giant breed, they are still large chickens compared to many other breeds.
The Brahma chicken comes in different shades, including buff, dark, and light colors. They lay brown eggs. The average chicken will lay around 150 eggs per year, which is an incredible amount.
If you have several of these chickens on your land, you will never have to worry about buying eggs from the grocery store again. Much like some of the other large chicken breeds, Brahma chickens are calm and easy to handle. They are great chickens for both beginners and those with more experience handling chickens. This breed is also good with children!
Another large chicken breed is the Cochin chicken. These beautiful birds commonly get used for ornamental purposes. Some of these chickens are known for their beautiful multi-color feathers in brown, red, and black shades. However, there are other recognized varieties of this breed, including blue, black, and brown. The average Cochin chicken weighs up to 11 pounds. Most female chickens within this breed weigh around eight pounds, but some can weigh a bit more.
- The Cochin chicken will typically produce around 160 eggs per year. Not only do these chickens produce many eggs, but they are also known for their calm behavior.
- These chickens are friendly with their handlers and do not make much noise.
- If you prefer chickens that do not make as much noise as some other breeds, the Cochin chicken is a must-have.
- You will enjoy having these birds on your land because they behave well and look beautiful.
Malay chickens are a large chicken breed best known for their height. This is the tallest chicken breed of them all! Most of these chickens weigh around 11 pounds and are known for their posture. It is quite common to see Malay chickens with long necks and strong bodies. The eggs produced by these chickens are medium in size. This breed will lay, on average, around 120 eggs per year.
- Malay chickens come in many colors.
- You may find them in shades of brown, black, white, spangled, and more.
- Although these chickens are interesting to look at, they are not the friendliest.
- This breed is known for being aggressive.
- If you are new to handling chickens, the Malay chicken is not a great choice.
Suppose you have young children who will spend time around the animals. In that case, you should avoid these aggressive birds. However, if you have the experience and do not mind dealing with aggression, this breed might be a good fit for you.
Although not as large as some of the others listed, the Orpington chicken is still considered a large breed.
- The average Orpington chicken weighs up to eight pounds. These chickens are British and initially came about during the 19th century.
- People use these chickens for both eggs and meat. If you want chickens that lay plenty of eggs, the Orpington chickens are a great choice.
- They will typically lay around 190 eggs per year. Besides lying close to 200 eggs, those eggs are enormous compared to other eggs laid by different chicken breeds.
- Orpington chickens come in several colors, including shades of black, white, and blue.
- They have an average lifespan of eight years, making them a great long-term pet for you and your family.
These chickens are also known for their calm demeanor. Because they are common and easy to handle, they are ideal for those new to caring for chickens. Even if you have experience with chickens, you may still love having this breed of chickens on your land.
Largest Chicken Breeds
Some chicken breeds are larger than others. Many of the largest chicken breeds are calm and great for beginners, but not all. It is good to know more about the temperament of these different breeds. If you know more about their temperament, you can decide which breed to bring home.
If you want to have large chickens that are calm and lay plenty of eggs each year, you will have plenty of options. Before getting any of these chickens on your land, it is also vital to have the necessities for them. You need to make sure you have the proper bedding, food, and environment set up for them to thrive.