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Spotlight Breed Of The Week Buckeyes
In the late 1800's Nettie Metcalf, a housewife from Warren Ohio created a red chicken breed and appropriately named it Buckeyes after the state of Ohio. Buckeyes are unique in the American Class of chickens in that it is the only breed created entirely by a woman and officially accepted into the American Poultry Association in 1904. The industry was dominated by very influential businessmen heavily invested in the new Rhode Island Red breed and they did everything in their power to oust the Buckeye breed. Their attempts to do so failed. However, somehow the breed disappeared from the records of the American Poultry Association standards around 1915. It’s unclear how or even why that happened but the breed reappears around the mid to late 1930’s again as a recognized breed. However, like many other things, the great depression had an impact on the Buckeye breed and it nearly faded into obscurity. This breed is still considered quite rare but in the last couple of years, they have been upgraded from the threatened list to the watch list by the American Livestock Breeds Conservancy.
The Buckeye is the only purely American breed to sport a pea comb, and this, combined with its stocky build, makes it a supremely cold-hardy bird. Buckeyes have rich yellow skin, with mahogany feathering and black tails. They adjust to confinement well but prefer to range on grass. They are extremely friendly docile birds. A good dual-purpose producer of brown eggs is well suited for small farmyards and backyard flocks.
Adult Birds Description: Plumage is a rich and lustrous reddish brown or mahogany, though tail contains some black. Most of the under color is bright red with slate-colored bars down their backs. Beaks are yellow with reddish horn shanks and toes are yellow.
Baby Chick description: Buff color with some dark brown speckling on heads. Beaks, legs and toes yellow.
Origin: United States
Classification Type: American
Temperament: Great for free range, calm & docile. Do not tolerate confinement well.
Purpose: Dual purpose eggs laying and meat production.
Broodiness: Occasionally but make good mothers.
Hardiness: Very hardy can tolerate almost any climate.
Maturing: 20-22 weeks Mating ratio: 8 females to 1 male
Egg color: Brown Egg size: Large
Rate Of Lay: Good Eggs per year: 200-50
Weight: Hen 6 ½ lbs Rooster: 9 lbs
Pullet 5 ½ lbs Cockerel 7 lbs
Spacing: Confined at all times 10 square feet per bird. Confined at night only at least 4 square feet of space per bird
Roost height: 2Ft -4FT
Life Span: Of the Buckeye depends on how well they are cared for, and the quality of life that they enjoy. Buckeyes will generally live for approximately 6-8 years but have been known to reach 10-12 years. However, egg production will decrease every year.
Other facts: Mrs. Nettie Metcalf is the only American woman to have developed an officially recognized breed (Buckeyes).
We Hatch Buckeyes twice a week February thru May.