Chickens are so much fun and fresh eggs are delicious and healthy. A lot more people would love to give raising a couple hens a try but fear they are noisy and that neighbors will start complaining, and the joy will soon turn into misery.
If you don’t have a big yard and your neighbors are close, you can still raise a couple hens with success. Placing your coop in the right place in the yard and choosing the right breed of hen will get you off to a good start.
Another thing that will help keep the coop quiet is to choose two or three of the same breed of hen. It seems to me that the different kinds of chickens stick together, thus the old saying “Birds of a feather, flock together”. This will help make sure that everyone gets along and no one will be the odd hen out, because that will cause stress and stress will cause commotion and commotion equals noise.
The breed of hen that I love the most for several reasons is the Black Australorp. They are quiet and so sweet. They are heat and cold hardy, they lay large brown eggs and they lay lots of them.
Also, they are what is called a dual purpose bird which means they are great for laying eggs and also for butchering to eat if that is something you want. The hens are also broody, which means they will sit and hatch their own chicks if you have a rooster. So for me they are my number one choice.
My second choice is the Buff Orpington, these hens are sweet and friendly like the Black Australorps. They are slightly bigger, usually around seven pounds but their beautiful fluffy gold feathers make them look huge. They can not take the really hot weather, so you must make double sure your hen house is under a tree in dark shade.
They handle the cold much better than the heat. They are broody and will also sit and hatch out their own chicks if you have a rooster just like the Black Australorp’s. Buff Orpington’s are also considered a dual purpose breed.
I have personally owned both these breeds and love them so much, that is why I recommend them to anyone who wants to give backyard chickens a try for the first time.