10 largest chickens in the world
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- First bred in Germany in the 1800s, the Wolf Mountain Dog lays about 200 eggs a year and has a docile temperament.
- The Australorp is known for its black, green or white plumage and is capable of outgrowing the Wolf Mountain with its ability to lay 300 eggs per year.
- Easy-going and capable of growing to impressive sizes, Jersey Giants are popular with pet owners. They lay large brown eggs.
Chickens have been a source of edible meat and eggs for centuries. Found around the world and today with over 500 different breeds, there is something for everyone from laying hens to pets, and almost anyone who wants to try can keep chickens. However, one thing to consider is size, and while some may be tiny, there are some giants too! Here are the 10 largest chicken breeds ranked by weight.
#10: Rhode Island Red
Native to Rhode Island in the northeastern United States in the late nineteenth century, the Rhode Island Red has long been one of the most popular chicken breeds for its good temperament and dual purpose. Now found all over the world, they have excellent egg-laying abilities and can reach a weight of around 9 pounds, making them suitable both for egg-laying and as a source of meat. Easily recognizable by their distinctive red plumage, which can range in color from reddish brown to almost black, their combs and wattles are also red, while their legs and feet are yellow.
Malay chickens are one of the tallest chicken breeds, standing about 36 inches, but they are not the heaviest, weighing about 9 pounds. The breed originated in Devon and Cornwall, England, and was bred by crossing birds imported from India and Asia. They vary in appearance – from white with light brown patches to almost black bodies with dark brown patches and smooth, glossy plumage. The Malay is a game bird, originally used for cockfighting, but now they are often used for show and egg laying, capable of laying 120 eggs a year, which is much more than before.
#8: Wolf Mountain, Germany
The German Wolf Mountain Chicken is a large chicken that originated in Germany in the nineteenth century and weighs about 9.5 pounds. They have long legs, a large body, and a short tail, and usually come in only a few colors – black, white, blue, and dark brown. Due to their size, they are often used at the table, but they are also good layers – laying about 200 eggs per year – which makes them excellent as dual-purpose birds. Plus, they're a docile breed, making them ideal for anyone looking to be self-sufficient.
The Orpington is an English breed originally bred in Orpington, England, as a large dual-purpose bird by crossing three other breeds (minorcas, langshans and Plymouth rocks). Now popular worldwide, Orpingtons can weigh up to 10 pounds and stand approximately 16 inches tall. They have a heavy body and are low to the ground, often making them look intimidating, but despite this, they are actually a very calm and docile breed. Orpingtons have downy feathers, their colors are usually black, white, blue, and buff (golden), and they are now often used for display rather than as a food source.
The Australorp is a very popular chicken breed as it is considered one of the most prolific laying hens in the world. Native to Australia, they can easily produce over 300 eggs a year, making them extremely reliable laying hens. The Australorp is a large bird weighing 10 pounds and standing about 27 inches tall. Their primary color is black, although blue and white are acceptable. Not only do hens lay good eggs, but they are also good mothers and are happy to sit on a nest of eggs, making them popular with breeders.
#5: Cornish Chicken
Cornish chicken, sometimes called Indian game chicken, originated in Cornwall, England, and is now also popular in Australia and the United States. Cornish chickens weigh about 10.5 pounds, have short legs but a full breast and are usually black or dark brown. Their feathers are very thin and smooth which makes them vulnerable to cold and therefore affects reproduction and hatching rates during the colder months. While they are ideal for producing table meat, their layers are of poor quality, producing only about 80 eggs a year.
Cochin Chicken is native to China and was originally known as Shanghai Chicken. Cochin turtles come in a variety of colors including black, buff, brown, silver and white and are stunning in appearance due to the profusion of feathers on their feet and legs – so numerous that they are not usually seen Their feet are entirely due to their feathers. Typically weighing up to 11 pounds, cochin gliders are particularly heavy birds, but despite their size, they are a calm and friendly breed that make great pets. Hens are exceptional mothers because they will sit on any type of egg to hatch—even duck or turkey eggs.
#3: Dong Tao
Dong Tao Chicken is also known as Dragon Chicken because its legs and feet are particularly large, as thick as a human's wrist, and its whole body is covered with red scales. They are a rare breed of chicken from the Dong Tao region of Vietnam and can weigh up to 12 pounds. Roosters are usually a stunning reddish brown, while hens are usually white. Due to their large feet, hens cannot be good mothers, as they often stand on the eggs, so their eggs are usually hatched in an incubator. Their meat was originally served only to royalty, but is now a delicacy that can often be found in expensive restaurants.
#2: Brahma Chicken
Chicken Brahma typically weighs about 12 pounds and originated in the United States. The Brahma chicken holds the record for the heaviest known chicken ( more on that below! ), but on average, the breed is slightly smaller than the top-ranked Jersey Giant. Brahmas come in three known colors – white with a black collar and tail, light yellow with a black collar and tail, and dark gray with a mixed black and white collar and tail. They are a great dual-purpose chicken because they lay a lot of eggs. Brahmas do well in cold environments due to their thick plumage. They also have a calm nature, but they don't like being locked up, preferring to be allowed to roam around and feed.
#1: Big Jersey Chicken
The largest chicken in the world is the Jersey Giant Chicken. Originating from New Jersey in the northeastern United States, these huge birds can weigh up to 13 pounds. Known for being docile and good-natured, Jersey Giants are slow growing but make excellent pets for anyone willing to care for them. They are usually black, white or blue in color and have been known to make especially good layers during the winter months. Hens lay large brown eggs and despite their size, they make excellent hens.
Bonus: The biggest chicken on earth!
The largest individual chicken on record was named Merakli and was from Kosovo. Merakli rose to fame in 2017 when a photo of the nearly 17-pound rooster was posted on a Facebook group in Kosovo.
While the Jersey Giant is the average largest chicken breed, the Merakli is a type of Brahma chicken. His exact weight is said to be 16.5 pounds, and he stands just under 2.8 feet tall .
Summary of the 10 largest chickens in the world
Let's take a look back at the chicken that ranks among the top 10 subspecies on the planet!
|jersey giant chicken
|German Wolf Mountain
|rhode island red
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For many years, I have been writing professionally, with an emphasis on animals and wildlife. I love spending time outdoors, and when I'm not writing I'll be found on a farm surrounded by horses, dogs, sheep and pigs.
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