We were beginner chicken owners and bought a mix of chickens 12mths ago. Of these our all round favourite is the Barred Plymouth Rocks. The roosters are very docile (we have currently 5) and not one has ever been aggressive and they attend their flock beautifully. The hens are very broody and have withheld their eggs unless being broody, that said we have almost encouraged this in our inexperience. That said their eggs are lovely and as a meat bird (culled roosters) they have a good carcass size,flavour etc.
I have 4 hens, 1 cockerel, and 1 hen Wellsummer. The hens are braver than the Wellsummer, very friendly and incredibly nosey. When ever you go out they run over to see if you have brought something nice for them. Really windy where I live but it doesn’t seem to bother them in the slightest. The eggs are delicious.
One word of caution!!! The cockerel has attacked me twice (from behind) drawn blood once, and attacked my wife. He is now wary of me but it takes some work to assert your dominance. Wouldn’t recommend if you have children. Stick to hens.
I really love the Plymouth Rock breed it is my favorite chicken ever. I really like the barred pattern on the feathers. These chickens are also very exceptional egg layers. They are very social to mine will just eat out of my hand. I really like the Plymouth Rock.
An excellent layer and an excellent meat breed
I have a variety of different breeds, but my barred Plymouth rock lays by far and away the best egg. It is not only beautiful to look at - a delicate pink - but also tastes far richer and is deeper yellow than all my other eggs, athough she has the same range. She is big and so smart with her black and white stripes and shining feathers, and is probably my best-natured with all the other birds. She is quite talkative with a gentle voice and is a lovely placid, easy going bird. Definitely one of my favourites.
a good layer and a all round nice bird I would recommend this to everybody how want chicken's.
The hens are great layers, I love their yellow eggs! Big downside: our Barred Rock rooster attacked me when I was 3. Before I got away, he pecked me more than 80 times on my head and neck, especially around my eyes, and he broke my nose. We found out later that the males can be quite defensive and territorial, so since then we only have the hens. I rated the friendliness as poor, but because the disparity in friendliness between the male and female is great, no rating would be true of the other sex. If you have small children with shiny, bright eyes, you don't want the male Barred Rock around.
My Barred Plymouth Rock is my best egg layer, she started laying at 23 weeks old and and so far has laid at least two dozen brown eggs each month.
She wasn't handled much as a chick, but is still friendly & curious about people... doesn't like to be held, though that's my fault for not socializing her when she was younger.
With no roosters in my flock, she has become the dominate chicken, developed a larger comb and is much more vocal then the Amerucana. If a neighbor's cat comes into the yard, she is the one who tells us about it!
One of these was in my hedge having escaped from my neighbour where it lived there for 6 weeks before I could catch it. It now lives happily with 3 larger hens and lays about 4/5 eggs a week but despite having it's wing clipped it can still get into trees and can clear a 4 foot fence. It is very independent and feisty and is the best flyer as when I call it flies 3/4 metres stops then does the same again.
I initially added the Barred Plymouth Rock to my flock because my husband loved their coloring. I'm very happy I added them because they are a unique and wonderful addition to a backyard flock.
Of the two Barred Rocks I have, one (Loretta) was the flock leader from day one. It was apparent to me during the first week of raising them from chicks. She was bold, assertive, and all the others followed her. She was clearly my strongest hen.
Loretta was also the first to go broody (an indication of your strongest hen), and stayed that way for weeks despite my attempts to break her "cycle." Otherwise, she lays a beautiful large light brown egg, quite consistently. Rocks are an easily-handled bird, and can be very docile. I wouldn't call mine overly sweet, but they are certainly tame birds that I would recommend to anyone.
As far as the roosters go, I don't have any, so I can't speak from personal experience. However, all of my friends who have kept Rock roosters claim them to be the best protectors of the flock, and very tame if handled often, and raised with consistent handling.