Below is a list of our top egg laying chickens.
1. Pearl White Leghorns
These are excellent layers of large, white eggs. Pearl White Leghorns are our most prolific layers. They also have an excellent feed conversion ratio, which helps to keep down the feed costs associated with egg production.
2. Red Stars
These are excellent layers of large, brown eggs. Red Stars lay well through hot or cold weather. They are sex-linked, meaning that it’s easy to distinguish between male and female chicks at the time of hatch by their feather color.
3. Black Stars
These are excellent layers of large, brown eggs. Black Stars weigh a little over 5 pounds at maturity. Like Red Stars, Black Stars are a sex-linked variety. The females are black with gold hackle and breast feathers.
4. Rhode Island Reds
These are excellent layers of large, brown eggs. Rhode Island Reds are dual purpose birds, that lay well and are suitable for meat production.
5. Black Australorps
Black Australorps were originally developed in Australia and were brought to the United States in the 1920s. They are excellent layers of large, brown eggs. Black Australorps are a dual purpose breed that can be raised for both meat and egg production. Males reach 6-8 pounds at maturity, and females reach 5-7 pounds.
In addition to these varieties, we have many other breeds that are also excellent layers, but for top egg production, these five varieties are our best.
Hey – I had 2 packs of 50 multi breed layers sent all the way to the Canadian/American border at Blaine Washington. They arrived happy as “babies”, drove them thru the border, drove them them to Victoria bound ferry, raced home and put them into a lovely coop all clean and ready for them. My favourites so far are the Red Stars and the Turkens. Turkens are so friendly and have a very unusual vocabulary when they follow you around. Beautiful big pink/brown eggs. Cheers from Katrinka in Victoria, BC. I do not recommend the Buff-Orpingtons – lucky to get 3 eggs a week.
Does anyone have an opinion on best bantam layers?
I’ve been told that the Rhode Island Red Bantam is a good bantam layer. https://www.mcmurrayhatchery.com/bantam_rhode_island_red_bantam.html
What are the EE hens that betty writes about?
EE is a short hand for Easter Egger. Easter Egger is another name for the Araucanas/Ameraucanas that McMurray Hatchery sells.
And they lay every day now that it’s warmer, and even in the winter they did just fine — a nice sized greenish egg — taste very good. I got them as day olds from Murray. Very healthy flock.
Charles of PA
I have a 30 to 40 bird flock in order to sell eggs. I have purchased most from Murray McMurray over many years. I rely upon Ameracana & Australorp hens for the most, both are super productive & my customers love the range of colors of the very large eggs. I do add other breeds mostly for my own amusement, including a few straight run types, and have raised some magnificent roosters over the years. This year I ordered extra early & included sex links for better feed conversion. Excellent hatchery to deal with.
I llike to purchase some of your five excellent egg layers above. I live in las cruces, new mexico. Can you ship there? Would it be safe for the birds.
What are the approximate costs for the birds and shipping?
I would like to purchase 3-5 of the above. I want to purchase them
at 16 weeks, a few weeks before egg laying or just a few days before
they are theoretically ready to lay.
Please get back to me asap. Marty Rennert
We can ship any of the birds on https://www.mcmurrayhatchery.com/started_pullets.html to Las Cruces, NM. The cost for shipping 3 birds would be $118.85, the cost to ship 5 is$151.55.
Another option would be to get them at 4-8 weeks old https://www.mcmurrayhatchery.com/4_week_old_chicks_category.html . The cost for shipping 3 birds is $69.01 and the cost for 5 is $81.38
The cheapest and eventually the most efficient way would be to buy newborn chicks. You would need to order 15 chicks due to the shipping requirements of newborn chicks. If you need only 3-5 egg layers, then you could turn the remaining 10-12 chicks into soup or supper (or put in the freezer) after 3-5 months. This is a much cheaper option and would give you plenty of meat as well as eggs. Have fun and good luck!
The reds are great in warm weather. But come late fall until early spring where the weather stays above 55 degrees for several days, you are lucky to get more than about four eggs a day. I have been running reds for four years with getting hens from several different sources and the results are the same every years.
They may need some extra light in the fall and winter to continue laying well. I keep a light on a timer so it comes on in the morning before sunrise and stays on a while after sunset. Some breeds are more photosensitive than others.
I have a small farm egg business, and I firmly stand behind my Red Star hens that I purchase every year from Murray McMurray. These hens are amazing! They lay the most beautiful large brown eggs. Another one you should add to this list is the Turken- these are excellent layers of large, pretty brown eggs , although they do tend to go broody from time to time. I will always continue to buy these two breeds…. Thank you Murray McMurray!!
Are any of these top egg layers good brooders?
The White Leghorns, Red Stars, and Black Stars hardly ever go broody. Sometimes the Black Australorps will in their second year. You could consider the Buff Orpingtons – a good egg layer that will go broody (not every hen – but more likely to).
im looking for some chickens that lay large brown eggs and also are setters to raise more chicks and info would be very helpful an thanks
You could consider the Buff Orpingtons – a good egg layer that will go broody (not every hen – but more likely to).
I have had good results with Buff Orpingtons and Red Sex Links. I am considering increasing my flock with Black Australorps. I have two hens that are setting and am waiting to see what I get. I have a Black Australorp rooster and a Ameraucana rooster so it is a coin toss as to what might hatch.
My EE hens lay just as much as the RIR hens I used to have, and they aren’t anywhere near as mean. RIR are downright dangerous, and I have had to take a whip to several RIR roosters who tried to attack my face!
I culled my flock down to 6 EE hens this last winter and they laid faithfully, 2-6 eggs/day, just as much as the RIR hens. Plus the eggs are blue.
I have had lots of breeds in my 30 plus years of raising hens for eggs but have treated all of my girls like family. My favorites remain Brahmas and Silver laced Wyandottes and my friendliest pheasant Cochin. I get lovely large eggs at a consistent rate of 4-5 per week per hen, regardless of breed for the first three years. It slows down a bit after that for another 1-2 years, when I let them retire until they pass naturally. I feed them pellets, veggies, mealworms and all the bugs they can find. In turn, they give me the best eggs in the world, and hours of cuteness. For me, it’s not about breeds — it’s about love and care.
What are the best layers of colored eggs (other than white or brown).
https://www.mcmurrayhatchery.com/americanas.html – they are the best layers of colored eggs that I know of.
We purchased 63 Rhode Island Reds from McMurray Hatchery ….60 little girls and 3 boys. We only lost one girl and all the rest have grown up to be strong layers and are very gentle , beautiful girls. The 3 boys all get along great and the flock is wonderful to take care of and are truly pleasure to watch. We highly recommend McMurray for quality !!!!
I had red sex link hens and they are the best layers of brown eggs, period!!!!! I would put them against any other type of chicken.
I have (r.i.r.s),&buff orp’s &they are great layer’s of brown egg’s.. thank’s…
I got fifteen of the mixed layers from you – eight were Pearl White Leghorns. They lay every day, and are by far the most inquisitive of the lot, and the smallest birds. Their eggs are always the largest. One other is a Rhode Island Red, and she lays almost every day. The rest are all laying, but none as regular at the white leghorns. The colored eggs are a novelty, but you can’t beat the white ones for cooking!
For the past 12 years we only buy Red or Black Stars. They will lay for 4 years and it doesn’t matter how hot or cold it is. We never use a light bulb during the winter months and out of 12 hens we would sometimes go down to 8 eggs per day. One year we will get Red Stars and three years later we get Black Stars, that way I can remember which are the oldest hens. We love the quality of your chicks. We have bought from you for many many years and will continue. Thank you.
I know there are a lot of factors that determine an egg’s size but, generally speaking what breed produces jumbo size white and brown eggs? thanks
The Pearl White for large white eggs and the Red Stars for large brown eggs.
Bought the red sex link chicks in September and by Christmas the started laying nice brown eggs, some with double yokes. Many of the eggs are supersize and won’t fit in a large egg carton. Very easy to handle and are semi friendly.
Do you have any Isa Browns?
Our Red Stars are very similar in appearance and egg production to the Isa Browns.