What are the most popular gold chicken breeds in the US? In this article I’ll be taking a look at all of the well-known and loved gold colored chickens, recognized by the American Poultry Association.
From their origin to what they’re best used for, these chickens will surely give you some inspiration on which breed would work best for your needs. So without further ado, let’s get started!
List of Gold Chicken Breeds
The leghorn is a very hardy white-egg laying breed that has been popular since the 19th century.
The hens are excellent layers of large eggs capable of producing up to 300 eggs per year. Impressive, isn’t it?
This breed originates from Italy, it was introduced in US in the 19th century, however its gold variety was admitted to the American Poultry Association in 1981.
Known for being active and noisy, they can be skittish at times but this just adds to their charm.
They are usually used as backyard chickens because of their productivity and hearty nature where egg production doesn’t suffer in cold temperatures.
Of course, no breed is perfect so if you decide to get a Leghorn, be prepared to deal with their occasional moodiness.
Next on my list of pure gold chicken breeds is the gold Phoenix chicken.
This is an ornamental chicken breed with unknown origin. It is uncertain whether the chicken originated from Japan or Germany. It has a silver and golden chicken variety admitted to APA in 1983.
This is one of just a few chicken breeds with long tail feathers accepted in the US by APA.
Hens usually weigh approximately 4 pounds while roosters can be more than 5.5 pounds.
The hens are poor layers producing only 80 tinted eggs per year. It’s definitely worth considering this if you’re thinking about getting some new hens for eggs.
As far as temperament goes, they’re not usually flighty like some other breeds but can still be skittish at times this needs to be taken into account before deciding on these chickens.
Golden Leghorn and Golden Phoenix are both captivating breeds with their unique qualities and characteristics. Let’s explore the differences and similarities between these two golden beauties:
- Egg Production: Golden Leghorns are known for their exceptional egg-laying abilities. They are prolific layers of large white eggs, making them a favorite among farmers focused on egg production.
- Personality: Leghorns are active and energetic chickens. They have a curious and independent nature, often exploring their surroundings with enthusiasm.
- Size: Golden Leghorns are medium-sized birds with a compact and sleek build. Their body is well-proportioned and designed for efficient movement.
- Cold Hardiness: While Leghorns have hardy qualities, they may be more suited to temperate or warmer climates due to their lighter feathering.
- Foraging: Leghorns are skilled foragers, which makes them well-suited for free-range environments. Their ability to find insects and forage for food contributes to their overall health and well-being.
- Heritage: Leghorns are a heritage breed with a long history in poultry keeping. They come in various colors, including the captivating golden variety.
- Aesthetics: The Golden Phoenix is renowned for its stunning and intricate golden plumage. Their feathers display a rich and lustrous gold hue that adds a touch of elegance to any flock.
- Egg Production: While not as prolific as Leghorns, Golden Phoenix chickens are still reliable egg layers. They contribute a moderate number of eggs with a focus on quality over quantity.
- Temperament: Golden Phoenix chickens are known for their friendly and sociable personalities. They are often docile and enjoy interaction with their caretakers.
- Size: Golden Phoenix chickens are medium-sized birds with a graceful and slender appearance. Their slender legs and neat stature make them visually appealing.
- Cold Hardiness: These chickens possess some cold-hardy characteristics, but providing appropriate shelter and protection during colder months is recommended.
- Distinct Heritage: The Golden Phoenix breed has its origins in Japan and is prized for its stunning appearance and ornamental qualities.
In summary, both Golden Leghorns and Golden Phoenix chickens bring unique attributes to the farm. Golden Leghorns are renowned for their egg-laying prowess, while Golden Phoenix chickens captivate with their exquisite golden plumage and friendly demeanor. The choice between these breeds depends on your specific goals, preferences, and the environment in which you plan to raise them.
Gold Campine Chickens
The Campine was developed in Belgium, and the gold chicken variety was admitted to APA in 1914.
They were bred originally as show birds because of their interesting appearance.
Both the silver and the gold chicken are black with beetle-green sheen. However the head, hackles and the body ground are white on the silver variety and rich gold on the gold chicken variety.
The hens are usually flighty and the roosters can be aggressive, so they are not recommended for first time chicken owners.
The Gold Sebright is a bantam chicken breed that is extremely popular on shows across the US and UK.
It has been popular since it was first introduced to the country back in the early 1800s when they were bred by Sir John Sebright, hence their name.
They were originally developed as ornamental chickens and quickly gained popularity as show birds, due to their unique appearance.
Much like other gold-colored breeds on my list, these little guys are really friendly towards humans and can be handled without any trouble at all which makes them perfect if you’re thinking about showing them off to some friends or family member who’s never seen them before.
The hens lay around 50 small white eggs per year so this might not be a good choice if you’re looking for a high egg production chicken.
Polish Bearded Golden
There is much debate about the origin of the Polish chicken breed, but it has been a popular choice since around 1820 and remains sought after today.
It was 1883 when the gold chicken variety was admitted to APA.
The hens tend to be very skittish when introduced into new environments and will peck at humans if they feel threatened, this makes them not ideal if you’re looking for a chicken that can be handled by those who’ve never done so before.
However, if you have experience with chickens then these might be just right for your flock because they’ll produce an average of 120 eggs per year which is a pretty good amount in comparison to others.
Other Gold Colored Chicken Breeds
Before we continue, it’s important to make one thing clear… To meet the American Poultry Association‘s standards, there are 7 different gold classifications that a chicken can be placed in.
- Golden Duckwing
- Golden Penciled
- Golden Spangled
- Golden Laced
- Bearded Golden
- Non-Bearded Golden
The top five golden chicken breeds are the ONLY breeds recognized by the APA under the ‘gold’ chicken variety.
Unlike the gold chicken breeds above, the following five chickens are not entirely gold-colored chicken breeds.
These breeds might not have golden plumage, but they will have golden pattern, like golden penciled or golden laced pattern on their plumage and so on.
Old English Game Golden Duckwing
The Old English Game is a breed that was known for being used in cockfighting back in the day as this was their main purpose.
However, since this practice has become illegal in most countries the breed itself has mostly been forgotten by the general public.
The gold duckwing chicken variety of this breed was introduced to APA in 1938.
It is worth noting that the roosters tend to be aggressive so be sure that you know exactly what you’re getting into before making your purchase!
Hens lay eggs at an average of 40 per year which is not impressive.
One thing’s for sure though: these chickens look fashionably beautiful when compared to many others and are definitely worth your time so if you’re looking for the best gold chicken breed then this is a great choice to go with!
Hamburg Golden Penciled
The golden penciled Hamburg is a gold-colored chicken that is still popular today in many countries all over the world including America.
This breed comes from Netherlands or Turkey and has been around since at least 1820 with records of them being shown in poultry exhibitions as early as 1874 (when it was officially admitted to APA).
The hens are known for their extreme egg production and can lay around 200 large eggs per year.
These hens are flighty so they should be handled gently when first starting out or they will become skittish very quickly.
If you’re looking for an egg laying breed then this gold colored chicken breed might be the one for you.
Golden Laced Wyandotte
First introduced in APA back in 1960, the Wyandotte chicken is another popular gold-colored chicken. Unfortunattly the golden laced Wyandotte is not as popular as the silver laced variety (image above).
They’re at an average weight of 8.5 pounds for roosters and 6.5 pounds for hens. You will get around 190 eggs from them per year on average. This makes them an awesome dual purpose breed.
Golden Laced Cochin
The Cochin is a feathered feet chicken breed that originates from Asia but has been around in America for over 80 years.
They are a large breed of chicken that is most often used for meat production.
On average roosters can weigh up to 11 pounds while hens weigh up to 9 pounds.
These breed will lay an average of 140 large brown eggs per year with some hens reaching 160 or even more!
But if you want a breed that produces lots of eggs, then you’ll like our list of the most popular chicken breeds for egg production.
The hens themselves are very gentle birds who tend not to be aggressive towards humans which makes them great pets for those who want a chicken that’s easy to handle.
Golden Duckwing Araucana
The Araucana is another popular chicken breed that was first developed in South America and has been admitted to APA in 1976.
They have a very unique appearance that sets them apart from other breeds.
The hens are very friendly and docile towards humans too so if you’re looking for a great pet chicken then these might be the right ones for you.
They also lay around an average of 250 eggs per year which is a pretty good number.
Golden Chicken Breed Questions
Golden chicken breeds, known for their attractive golden plumage, often spark curiosity among poultry enthusiasts. Whether you’re considering adding one of these breeds to your flock or simply intrigued by their characteristics, here are some common questions about golden chicken breeds, along with their answers:
1. What Are Golden Chicken Breeds? Golden chicken breeds refer to breeds that showcase a distinct and appealing golden plumage. These breeds feature feathers with shades of gold, buff, or reddish-brown, giving them a warm and vibrant appearance.
2. Which Breeds Fall Under the Golden Category? Some popular golden chicken breeds include Buff Orpington, Rhode Island Red, Light Sussex, Silver Laced Wyandotte, Buff Brahma, Golden Comet, and Red Sex-Link (Golden Sex-Link).
3. What Sizes Are Golden Chicken Breeds? Golden chicken breeds come in a range of sizes. Breeds like Buff Orpington and Buff Brahma are large birds, while Rhode Island Reds and Silver Laced Wyandottes are medium-sized.
4. Are Golden Chicken Breeds Good Egg Layers? Many golden chicken breeds are valued for their egg-laying abilities. Breeds like Rhode Island Reds, Golden Comets, and Red Sex-Link hens are known for their prolific egg production.
5. Do Golden Chicken Breeds Have Docile Personalities? Some golden chicken breeds, such as Buff Orpingtons and Sussex chickens, are renowned for their docile and friendly personalities. However, individual temperament can vary within breeds.
6. Are Golden Chicken Breeds Suitable for Backyard Flocks? Yes, many golden chicken breeds are well-suited for backyard flocks. Their calm dispositions, attractive appearance, and egg-laying capabilities make them popular choices for both novice and experienced chicken keepers.
7. Do Golden Chicken Breeds Require Special Care? Golden chicken breeds generally have similar care requirements to other chicken breeds. Providing proper housing, nutrition, access to clean water, and regular health checks is essential for their well-being.
8. Can Golden Chicken Breeds Be Raised for Meat? While some golden chicken breeds are dual-purpose and can be raised for meat, their primary focus is often on egg production. Breeds like Rhode Island Reds and Buff Brahma can provide both meat and eggs.
9. Do Golden Chicken Breeds Tolerate Cold Weather? Many golden chicken breeds, including Buff Orpingtons and Silver Laced Wyandottes, are known for their cold hardiness. Their dense feathering helps them withstand colder temperatures.
10. Are There Hybrid Varieties of Golden Chicken Breeds? Yes, some hybrid varieties, such as Golden Comet and Red Sex-Link, are specifically bred for their egg-laying abilities and golden plumage.
11. How Can I Choose the Right Golden Breed for My Flock? Consider factors such as your goals (eggs, meat, or both), available space, climate, and personal preferences when choosing a golden chicken breed. Research each breed’s characteristics and speak to experienced chicken keepers for guidance.
Popular Golden Chicken Breeds
Several popular golden chicken breeds are sought after by poultry enthusiasts and farmers for their unique characteristics, versatility, and practical attributes. Let’s explore some of these golden breeds and the reasons behind their popularity:
- Buff Orpington:
- Buff Orpingtons are beloved for their gentle and friendly personalities, making them ideal for backyard flocks and family farms.
- Their golden-buff plumage adds aesthetic appeal to any flock.
- Excellent brooders and mothers, Buff Orpingtons are known for their nurturing instincts.
- Golden Laced Wyandotte:
- The striking golden laced feather pattern of Wyandottes makes them a favorite among ornamental breed enthusiasts.
- They are dual-purpose birds, valued for both egg production and meat qualities.
- Cold-hardy and adaptable, Wyandottes thrive in various climates.
- Golden Comet:
- Golden Comets are renowned for their exceptional egg-laying abilities, consistently producing large brown eggs.
- They are known for their efficiency in converting feed into eggs, making them economical for egg production operations.
- Red Sex-Link:
- Red Sex-Link chickens are popular for their high egg production rates and efficiency.
- The breed’s sex-linked characteristics make it easy to distinguish between males and females shortly after hatching.
- Buff Brahmas:
- Buff Brahmas are appreciated for their gentle demeanor and attractive feathering.
- They are relatively large birds, making them suitable for both meat and egg production.
- Golden Campine:
- Golden Campines are known for their striking appearance, with golden hackle and body feathers.
- They are valued for their excellent foraging skills and adaptability to free-range environments.
- Rhode Island Red:
- While not entirely golden, Rhode Island Reds have golden highlights in their rich mahogany plumage.
- They are dual-purpose birds with respectable egg-laying capabilities and meat quality.
- Golden Spangled Hamburg:
- Hamburgs are admired for their unique spangled feather pattern and active nature.
- They are relatively small and efficient layers of white eggs.
- Golden Polish:
- Golden Polish chickens stand out with their distinctive crest of feathers and golden coloration.
- They are ornamental birds often kept for exhibition and their charming appearance.
- Golden Phoenix:
- Golden Phoenix chickens are prized for their elegant appearance and striking golden plumage.
- They have a docile and friendly temperament, making them suitable for various types of poultry enthusiasts.
These popular golden chicken breeds offer a combination of beauty, practicality, and diverse attributes that cater to a wide range of interests, whether it’s egg production, meat quality, ornamental appeal, or friendly personalities. Their unique qualities contribute to their enduring popularity in the world of poultry keeping.
So there you have it, the 10 most popular gold chicken breeds in the US!
Whether you’re looking for chickens that are gentle and docile towards your family, if you want some that are aggressive or some that will stand out in your backyard, these chickens are sure to satisfy your needs.