Plymouth Rock Chicken
Varieties: barred, blue, buff, Columbian, partridge, silver-penciled & white
Average Annual Egg Production: 200
Garden Suitability: High
Best Features: suitable as pets, good dual-use
The original Plymouth Rock chicken was first seen in an American poultry show in 1829, but the Barred variety (named after the bands of colour on its wings) first graced the show scene in 1869. The breed is still very popular in the USA, and is often bred for shows and exhibitions.
The Plymouth Rock is a good dual purpose chicken, laying a respectable 200 cream-coloured eggs a year. With its medium sized breast and long back, it is a good bird for the table too. Egg production does decrease in the winter, but rarely stops altogether.
Plymouth Rock hens can become broody unless eggs are removed swiftly, but are good mothers when given the opportunity. Their chicks grow rapidly for a heavy breed, feathering quickly, and living to a ripe old age too.
Plymouth Rocks tolerate cold weather well, and don’t mind being confined or free-range. Whilst these chickens are friendly and easy to tame, they are also alert and competitive, so they make good pets for the family who want more from their pets than a quick cuddle! However, they should always be tamed to some degree, as they can turn aggressive.
The Plymouth Rock bantam is a just a mini version of the larger bird, a friendly bird laying light cream eggs.