15 Best Egg Laying Chickens
If you are one of the few people who love living a farm life, then you must have considered bringing in chickens to your backyard. If you have enough space in your garden, you can easily raise some chickens and collect healthy, nutritious, warm eggs every morning. Yes, you hear that right – every morning! All you need to have is an understanding of the best egg laying chickens, and you can expect healthy eggs year-round.
Not all chooks are as productive in their egg laying capabilities as others. While breeds like Cochin, Polish, Frizzle, etc. will only lay 90-120 eggs a year, breeds like Plymouth Rock, Rhode Island Reds, Australops, and Leghorn, among others will lay 250-300 eggs a year.
With that said, if you are looking to have fresh warm eggs every day and all year long, it is important that you ensure you are raising a flock of the most productive egg laying chickens.
So, what are the best egg laying chickens? In this post, we will recommend you some of the best chicken breeds for farms and backyard flocks.
Let’s jump right into it.
The 300 Club Chooks
When it comes to laying 300 or more eggs a year, there are particularly two breeds that are popular among the backyard chicken owners and farmers.
#1 ISA Brown
ISA Browns are the preferred choice for an egg-laying flock. For starters, they can lay anywhere around 300-350 eggs a year. Known for their affectionate personality, these cute birds start to lay at 16 weeks of age. It isn’t a breed actually, but a commercial laying ‘hybrid’ that was specially designed for eggs. ISA Brown is one such chicken breed that you will find on the majority of commercial farms. This American breed can weigh up to 4.5 pounds and are remarkably low maintenance. The best part, this chicken breed can adapt to all weather conditions, including hot, humid, cold, or anywhere in between. These are one of the easiest chooks to begin with if you are considering starting a flock.
#2 Lohmann Brown
Similar to ISA Brown, Lohmann Brown chickens are bred specifically for egg laying. Yes, these chooks are also hybrids designed by a German genetics company with the aim of developing a new line of brown egg layers. They can lay anywhere around 300+ eggs annually and are known for their friendly personality. Despite its small size, it produces a shockingly large amount of brown eggs. These chooks are designed to lay eggs in the shortest period of time. They are also low maintenance and start laying eggs four to five months after hatching. This makes them a popular chicken breed among commercial chicken farms.
#3 Golden Comet
Another line of hybrid chickens, Golden Comets are popular commercial breeds known for laying up to 300 eggs a year, while offering an excellent feed conversion ratio. These chickens are a result of a cross between a White Rock hen and a New Hampshire Rooster. They are tough and rarely broody, and this is the reason why their eggs have to be incubated artificially or using foster hens for hatching chicks. This chicken breed is resilient to most weather conditions, and therefore, you can easily raise them on your farm or backyard. They start laying eggs as early as 16 weeks of age. Golden comets are curious birds yet friendly. They love exploring the backyard. So, make sure you provide them enough space to roam freely.
The 250 Club Chooks
While there are hybrid chickens specifically designed to lay eggs all-round the year (commercial purpose), if you are considering raising a human-friendly flock in your backyard, then these breeds might entice you.
Sussex is one of the largest chicken breeds that can grow to a whopping 8 pounds. They are beautiful-looking chickens that come in eight different color patterns. Its peaceful temperament makes the breed incredibly friendly and calm, and therefore, makes for great house pets as well. Most importantly, it can lay up to 250 massive eggs per year. It loves to roam free in the garden alone or with chooks of the same breed. This is because, despite their large size, they are often bullied by other breeds. Blame this to their peaceful temperament. You need to understand that there are different varieties of Sussex chooks, so their egg-laying ability may vary depending on their strain.
#5 Rhode Island Red
Rhode Island Reds are among the best egg laying chickens but are also raised for meat. They are one of the most popular breeds in the United States and can lay about 250 eggs a year. Rhode Island Reds are independent, robust breeds that are good at caring for themselves. They will roam around your backyard, looking for insects and other food sources. The best part, they are incredibly friendly by nature and get well with other members of the flock. The chooks can grow by about 6.5 pounds.
Leghorns are possibly the toughest breeds to tame. But they are one of the best egg laying chickens, laying up to 250 eggs a year. Known for their large body with thick white feathers and red combs, they are extremely shy. They are difficult chicken breeds to raise as they need plenty of water, food, and heat. So, we recommend that until and unless you have a large backyard, you should not raise one. This breed is best raised in farms with open spaces and lots of green grasses to eat.
Delawares have a natural motherly personality. Thus, they tend to go broody all the time. They make an incredible household pet, and watching them roam around your backyard is just fun. Delawares are sociable and go well with other chicken breeds as well. On top of all this, this is one of the best egg laying chickens that can lay around 250-280 eggs annually. They will be a great addition to your backyard chicken flock, and if you own a farm, you can raise them in large numbers along with other chicken breeds.
Australorps are one of the best egg laying chickens and a popular backyard chicken breed. They are docile by nature and were developed by farmers in Australia, keeping in mind the harsh Australian climate. With that said, Australorps are remarkably heat-tolerant. They can easily lay 250+ nutritious eggs a year. In fact, the world record for egg laying is held by Australorps. It is reported that one Australorp laid 364 eggs in 365 days! The opportunities are limitless.
#9 La Bresse
If you are looking to raise an easy-to-manage flock with the egg-laying capacity of 250 eggs per chicken every year, you can always go with La Bresse chooks. It is one of the oldest breeds of chicken developed in France and comes in three color variations – black, gray, and white. They are popularly raised for their eggs that have thick white shells. You can set up a coop and raise the flock in your backyard or raise hundreds of them on a small farm. They are friendly in nature, so they don’t have much problems living with other chicken breeds.
Dominiques are gentle chooks, and probably one of the rarest and unique breeds of chickens one can raise, according to the American Livestock Breeds Conservancy. They are available in white and black barred patterns, similar to Plymouth Rock and Barred Rock. A medium-size hen can lay about 250 eggs per year. These are considered one of the best egg laying chickens that prolifically lay during the summer months. This is an easygoing chicken breed that will provide you plenty of nutritious eggs throughout the year. They don’t fight and, therefore, can be kept in a closed pen. This makes them an excellent choice for your backyard chicken coop.
The 200 Club Chooks
The capability of hens to lay eggs lies in their genes and the breed they belong to. If you are a novice chicken-keeper wanting to raise hens, then these 200-club chooks are something you want to look into.
#11 Plymouth Rock
Plymouth Rocks are one of the most beautiful chicken breeds loved by chicken keepers all across the globe. Although they are not as productive as the aforementioned breeds when it comes to laying eggs, a single hen can provide you with 200 tasty eggs a year. Beginners looking to raise chickens for eggs are recommended to go with this breed. Plymouth Rocks are lovable birds that crave for affection and human connection. They can weigh as much as 6.5 pounds and are very friendly and easy to tame. Plymouth Rocks integrate well in flocks containing other breeds, and they start laying when they reach 18 weeks of age.
#12 Buff Orpington
Buff Orpington is one of the popular egg-laying chickens popular amongst novice chicken keepers. The bird is known for its heavy build with thick and fluffy feathers. It looks incredibly large and beautiful. This makes Orpington chickens great garden chickens. They can lay up to 200 eggs a year, depending on the care you provide. Children love them, and they are a bit broody. The farmers use these chickens as foster hens for hatching eggs. They are known for their motherly love and will foster abandoned chicks as their own. However, in order to raise this breed, you will need to provide them shelter to evade rains. Their fluffy coats retain moisture, which can make them sick.
#13 New Hampshire Reds
Another popular breed of garden chickens for newbies is the New Hampshire Reds. These are hardy breeds and probably the best egg laying chickens for farmers and chicken keepers who are starting out. These hens make fantastic mothers, as they are significantly broody. They can lay up to 200 eggs a year and spend most of their time brooding the eggs. They start laying eggs once they reach 18 weeks of age. This is a low-maintenance breed of chicken that you can easily raise in your backyard or on a farm. A good-quality, well-ventilated, and a hygienic coop is all this breed demands.
While Hamburg may not be on top of the list of egg production, laying about 200 eggs annually, these are the most gorgeous breeds you can raise. The beautiful black and white feathers of the hens make them look a lot like Dalmatians. However, they are a bit on the aggressive side and may harm other chickens in the flock if put in small spaces. Hamburg chickens need plenty of space for free range, as they are curious hens that love to inspect their surroundings. With that said, they are not great for the backyard until and unless it is large with plenty of areas to roam. Their glossy white eggs are quite popular as they taste absolutely delicious.
#15 Golden Laced Wyandottes
Golden Laced Wyandottes are probably the most beautiful chicken breed in this list. It is a large bird with beautiful reddish brown feathers and black edging and It weighs around 6 pounds, is an excellent forager, and a good egg layer as well, laying 200 eggs a year. It can add a gorgeous appearance to the flock and is tremendously broody, especially during the summer. This can cause a significant drop in egg production. As said, they are born foragers, they need plenty of space for free range and don’t do well when kept in coop for long durations. They start laying eggs when they reach 18 weeks of age.
If you are considering raising a flock of chicken in your backyard or farm solely for eggs, then the aforementioned breeds are the best egg laying chickens. Egg laying chickens, when compared to meat chickens need special care and diet to produce eggs on a somewhat daily basis. So, it is important that you learn everything about the coop design, their diet, and supplements, among other aspects, if you want to ensure that the production of eggs doesn’t stop year-round.