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Chicks Hatching

Beginners Guide
There are no hard and fast rules for hobby chicken keeping, no minimum or maximum, just remember a chickens nature and cater for it... generously!

Useful Links: In the quest for further information on poultry breeding the following websites may be useful.

The Poultry Club of GB
Poultry Guide

Hatching, Care & Incubation

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Rhode Island Red


One of the best known breeds, the RIR was developed in Rhode Island, hence the name. They are a heavy breed but are active, bright and alert.

The Rhode Island Red is a dual purpose utility bird raised for eggs and meat. The hen is an excellent layer of brown eggs, producing up to 280 eggs per year, she will seldom go broody.

Rhode Island HenThe eggs tend to be larger when the birds are free ranged

They are docile, friendly, hardy birds, laying even in cold weather, they are resistant to illness, are good at foraging and enjoy free ranging.

Rhode Island Reds are also bred for meat; the roosters grow to nearly 4 kg, while cockerels weigh about 1 lb less, making good sized birds for the table.Rhode Island Cock

The plumage is a dark rich glossy red in the male, being slightly less glossy in the female. The male should only have black in his wings and tail and the female the same but can have black on her neck. The body is broad and deep and oblong in its shape. It has a broad flat back with a medium sized tail. The earlobes are red in colour as are the eyes. They have yellow legs.

There is only one variety of Rhode Island Red.

These fowl differ completely in appearance, size and egg laying lifespan from the ordinary commercial hybrids which are regularly, mistakenly, referred to as Rhode Island Reds.