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Once I get my Cube, I'm hoping to expand my flock. At the moment I have a petshop hen and a retired ex-battery hen.

I'm thinking maybe picking up a couple more ex-batteries, but I'd like to own some unusual breeds as well (as long they're still good layers).

I'm a bit spoilt for choice here in Norfolk when it comes to chicken breeders in the surrounding countryside, so if you could recommend some interesting breeds, I'll have a starting point for my research beyond my chicken encyclopaedia!

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Intrigued what's a petshop hen :?: it depends what's important to you as in sizes of birds amount of eggs do you want a mix of coloured eggs I'm pretty sure cream leg bars lay a green coloured egg and Araucana lay blue green Marian's lay a chocolate brown egg the choices are endless as are the characters some are placid some more flighty always lots of excellent advice on here :D

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Intrigued what's a petshop hen :?: it depends what's important to you as in sizes of birds amount of eggs do you want a mix of coloured eggs I'm pretty sure cream leg bars lay a green coloured egg and Araucana lay blue green Marian's lay a chocolate brown egg the choices are endless as are the characters some are placid some more flighty always lots of excellent advice on here :D

 

I'm intrigued what my pet shop hen is too haha! I should take a photo of her and ask on here what breed she might be sometime.

 

I think it would be nice to have some placid chickens come to think of it - All but one of the 12 I've had were flighty ex-batts. Not too fussed about egg colours - they never last long in my house :P

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You may find the more unusual breeds are expensive (£30 per pullet) and not great layers Fizzyegg. It's a choice we made and opted for Pedigrees only, accepting eggs arrived when they felt like it. They do have a far longer life expectancy and look great though. Would like even more variety but space is limited.

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I have only pekin bantams due to space. They are feisty little madams, but do come in amazing colours with totally different personalities. My 2 boys have been lovely though :D Their eggs are lovely usually from end jan-oct.

 

Oh but they do go broody :roll: great if you want to hatch :D not so good for eggs :(

 

Happy chicken shopping :wink:

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My welsummer is gorgeous and lays beautiful eggs. The silkies are very funny but go broody at the drop of a hat. My pekin frizzle is neurotic :lol: The araucanas are very regal and usually lay every other day. The 3 different hybrids just get on with things, but my exbats are wonderful. So glad I got them, watching them change into strong healthy girls has been very rewarding. Orpies are on my wish list :D

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Yep, once you get an orpie you really miss them when they are gone - and then you say no more orpies ever again. And then you eat your words and get another orpie. :roll: But Orpingtons are really huge feather dusters, although my one is laying 3 in a row and then a day off so that's pretty good so far. Not getting any eggs from my pekin but she's old. I miss those eggs - sooooo deliciously creamy out of all the others.

What it boils down to is having a look around and see what catches your eye. I'd recommend normal sized to bantams for starters and not the orpies as they take a bit of manhandling (which is what happened with me - in at the deep end newbie) but once you have got your wrestling holds mastered with the bigguns (and what feels like a broken nose from flapping wings feels better and the huge gashes up your arms from scrabbling feet have healed) then smaller birds are a doddle! Now big brahmas and croad langshans are still on my list!

Edited to add there are lots of different coloured orpington bantams around. Like slightly bigger versions of pekins but without the feathery feet and still as blousy as the bigger ones. Although I don't know how their egg laying record.

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I have an Orpington and I call her my overgrown feather duster too. I didn't want an Orp, I wanted a Crested Cream Legbar and a Welsummer. I got them in the carrier then my OH said oh lets have three. So the breeder plonked a huge black ball of feathers in my arms and I was hooked.

 

None of them are friendly, not like my ex-batts have been friendly, but the Orp is the friendliest in that she is the nosiest. She also has the most beautiful big dark eyes

 

Crested Cream Legbars aren't friendly they are bonkers, like Leghorns are bonkers, but she is very greedy so you can find a way to her heart.

 

The Welsummer is lovely but shy.

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Aaaaand the 6 year old pekin laid an egg yesterday! :dance:

 

Our cuckoo maran always is with my hubby wherever he goes in the garden. The new orpie is now hanging around me a lot. Perhaps I'm her pet.

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I think I'm in love with Orpies! I'll probably get two more ex-batts and two Orpingtons because I love their big, fluffy butts.

 

How many large hens would be comfortable in a Cube without a Cube run? They have a fenced off area, so outdoor space isn't an issue for them.

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I've got 6 LF and a silkie in mine at the moment. I did have another silkie and a pekin, but have just moved them due to feather pecking. Mine aren't Orpies though. I think I would count them as 1 and a half hens :D

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We have just inherited a Partridge Orpington and have managed to introduce her to our 3 hybrids. She is an absolute beauty and extremely docile. Have always wanted Orpingtons and not sure we'd ever get anything but Orps now.

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I guess it depends on what you want. I specifically wanted two white chickens this time as mine were all dark coloured so I got an Amber Link and a white & pale grey blue splash maran. Next time I'll be on the look out for different egg colours. I have a Devon Rock who produced gorgeous green eggs.

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Just an update on this:

 

I was on holiday for the past week with no internet connection and only recently heard about the M62 crash and all the battery hens that suffered in it. After reading the whole story I was in TEARS.

 

Looks like I'll be getting battery hens again regardless!

 

Oh, and I found out that my one pet shop hen is a Black Rock :)

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I'm intrigued by this pet shop hen - why as a Black Rock in a pet shop? I've seen Silkies in pet shops but never a real hen. How do you come upon her?

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