ORGANIC DUAL PURPOSE CHICKEN BREEDS
Organic Dual-purpose chicken breeds define as one of those developed for both egg and meat production. The meat from dual-purpose breeds is not available until the end of the laying period. when the hens are replaced. Surplus cockerels, however, can be marketed earlier.
Advantages of Organic dual-purpose breed
- These breeds fit into organic poultry systems more appropriately than breeds developed specifically for egg or meat production.
- Many are heritage breeds and have a much lower incidence of health problems such as ascites and SDS than found with commercial meat breeds.
- In general, they are more docile and hardier than Leghorn-type birds but require more feed.
- Most produce brown-shelled or coloured eggs.
- The meat from these breeds at the end of lay is considered to have more flavor than the meat from young birds.
List Of Top Dual-Purpose Organic Chicken
Among dual-purpose breeds are the following:
This popular breed has been used to produce many crossbred varieties available today. It is a good producer of large brown eggs and is quiet and easy to handle. Both males and females have dark red plumage. At the end of lay. the hens weigh approximately 2.5 kg.
2. Barred Plymouth Rock
This is another heritage breed and is still used in some countries because of its good meat qualities, combined with good production of brown eggs. Both hens and cockerels are grey-barred, the hens weighing 2.5– 2.75 kg.
3. New Hampshire × Barred Rock
This cross is from two of the oldest heritage breeds and produces a very hardy chick. The birds are reported to be very quiet, with attractive plumage. The hens have a red comb and a jet-black body laced with brown on the neck and breast. They lay brown-shelled eggs and reach about 2.75 kg at the end of lay. Males have dark-colored bars.
4. Rhode Island Red × Columbian Rock
This bird is reputed to be a very hardy dual-purpose breed and has had excellent performance in small flocks over the past 30 years. The pullets are reddish-brown in color, very quiet and easy to handle, and have a bodyweight of about 2.75 kg at the end of lay. The eggs are rich brown in color, with good shell texture and interior quality. The cockerels are white with black markings.
This is a white-skinned chicken that was initially developed in France as a dual-purpose breed. It has excellent laying qualities and its performance does not change much with the different seasons. Favorites are hardy and active and adapt easily to free-range systems.
This breed was developed in the Canadian Province of Quebec and has an interesting history as a dual-purpose breed (Cole, 1922). the breed is noted for being an excellent layer of brown eggs and has a fleshy breast. This breed can lay up to 200-220 eggs in a year.
Ramzan, Dvm, Poultry Veterinarian
Nutrition and Feeding f of Organic Feeding, Robert Blair 2nd edition