If consuming delicious extra-large eggs are your thing, this is your lady. Rhode Islands are used in commercial hatcheries due to their strong egg production capabilities. Rhode Islands are known for being the hardiest in any type of environment. Rain, shine, snow, sun, they will still be seen foraging on any of your unwanted bugs. Maturing around 6lbs, they are considered dual purpose. They are rarely "broody," meaning they aren't disposed to keep sitting on their eggs until they hatch. Additionally, today's mature Rhode Island Reds make decent-sized roasters, with the roosters weighing in at around eight pounds, and the hens coming in a pound or two lighter. In the 1880’s Isaac Wilbur labeled each case of Rhode Island Red eggs with a PPP logo, an acronym for how he described the birds' positive attributes: Practical, Prolific, Profitable.
Eggs they will gift:
Gifts 5-6 Extra Large brown eggs a week. Strong winter layers.
Rhode Island Reds are as iconic as Lucille Ball. In fact, on level 5 of the Denver International Airport, you will find the Rhode Island Red Commemorative Monument featured on a mural by Gary Sweeney entitled America, Why I Love Her. The hens are calm and are among the best layers. Rhode Islands like to forage and produce eggs. Those interested in permaculture and homesteading are typically attracted to the Rhode Islands. If you obtain as chicks they will get use you holding them, however, they prefer to forage independently and will come running for treats.
The Rhode Island was developed in and is the state’s official bird. This famous dual-purpose breed has been supplying chicken lovers with drumsticks and omelets for over a century. In 1854, Captain William Tripp of Little Compton visited New Bedford and spotted a sailor with an exotic Red Malaysian cock. Tripp purchased the bird and added it to his own flock of dunghill fowl. The offspring proved to be better egg layers and larger than their ancestors. Tripp partnered with poultry farmer, John Macomber of Westport, Massachusetts, and the two traded birds back and forth, further improving the breed. Light Brahmas, Plymouth Rocks, and Brown Leghorns were added into the mix. The resulting offspring were a sort of proto-Rhode Island Red, prized for their high egg yield. Once 2.5- 3 years of age the ratio of feed cost to egg profit declines, and the Rhode Islands are considered large enough for meat.
In the 1880s, Isaac Wilbour, crossed "Tripp's fowl" with his own hens, further improving the breed. Wilbur gave them the name Rhode Island Red and was recognized for excellence by the Rhode Island Agricultural Experiment Station in Kingston. Back then, a large poultry operation averaged only 500 laying hens. With the use of this new breed, Wilbur designed "The Biggest Poultry Farm on Earth," a 200 acre spread with 5,000 laying hens.
The Rhode Island Red was recognized as a legitimate breed at the Providence poultry show in 1895, and was first advertised in poultry journals in 1896. The single-combed and rose-combed varieties were admitted to the American Poultry Association's Standard of Perfection in 1904.
Chick: Rhode Island
Most families are attracted to obtaining their chickens from us because we are proud to be completely different than typical feed store/ hatchery industry standards. Industry standard is to sex as accurately as possible and sell as pullets (female chicks) and force customers to accept a >10% chance of an accidental rooster without the ability to accept returns nor refunds. In addition, industry standard is to sell bantams (such as silkies) as straight runs since they are too small for safe vent sexing. We offer multiple sexing options.
If you are lucky enough to have a rooster, our male sexing option is a great way to save money on a wonderful breed.
This option means that the chicks have not yet been sexed and are sold as a straight run. While nature usually averages half girls and half boys in high volumes, families should only order if prepared for >50% possible roosters.
This is our most economical choice for families seeking a female. We kept city ordinances that restrict rooster ownership in mind. This option is great for families that want to enjoy a backyard flock of ladies. We use traditional sexing methods on the breeds that capable of being vent sexed, home accidental roosters, and issue store credit of original purchased price. To learn more about how we sex baby chicks based on their breed view: How to Sex Chickens.
Depending on the breed, sexing accuracy can range as low as 50% for bantam breeds, 90% for standard breeds, and as high as 95% for auto sexing breeds. Our female coverage option is not a service fee for sexing the chick, it is the cost difference between purchasing a male or a female chicken. We do not believe in grinding males alive nor suffocating them as day olds to enable a profit when selling a stated female chick at ridiculously low prices. Thus, our female pricing takes into consideration the male left behind with each female purchased. Male chicks are typically half the price of a female.
To qualify for rehoming, the rooster must remain in perfect health. If the family decides to return the rooster, a store credit in the amount of original purchase price is provided. As a family, you are welcome to decide to keep any accidental rooster and forfeit the credit.
DNA Sexed Female Chicks
For families that get emotionally bonded quickly and do not want to risk a future discovery of a rooster, we offer DNA sexing. DNA sexing is the only true accurate method of sexing baby chicks. DNA testing is a significantly higher financial investment. In most cases, it is 3x the cost as (1) female sex covered chick.
Balance accuracy with financial investment
The sexing decision is one that needs to be made at time of purchased and the original order cannot be altered once the order is fulfilled. It is important as a family to determine the right balance between sexing accuracy and financial investment for your family’s situation.
We provide as much information on our website as possible to ensure families make an informed decision based on their situation and lifestyle. Some breeds are more accurate in sexing and most families find our female coverage adequate in providing a free home for their accidental rooster (up to $100 savings) and use the store credit towards a replacement or our organic feed. While harder to sex bantam breeds, or families that know they will develop a with strong emotional attachment prefer to invest in DNA sexing.