VERY grateful for the support of all our customers during a very difficult 2020 season. We are privilidged to have been able to support customers in difficulties also. As always our published prices haven't changed (appears we now have the best birds at the lowest prices thanks to the greed of others) and so be aware demand remains high, Appointments are still in use , please see availability page and contact us.
Only Welshpoultry grow these specific bloodlines from French, Dutch and Belgium hatcheries in addition to our own parent stock. They offer superior longevity, hardiness and consistancy in lay. See the "About us" page to find out more
Scroll through the images and descriptions of our birds below, as a grower from day old chicks we supply in a range of ages, all reared naturally and together to help socialisation and exposure to the environment. The hens are reared by hand in the same way you would keep them, giving confident, friendly animals with no anti-social behaviour. Please see the "poultry prices and availability page" when you are ready to make your purchase.
Come and see where Sky1's "STELLA" was filmed
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Our Range of Breeds
Typically, we stock a range of 6 to 8 heavy laying breeds and about 4 to 6 rare / pure breeds. This is due to the availablity of confirmned disease free parent stock and sexed chicks. We also produce some limited Duck numbers. Details of potential stock is below , Please check the availability page which is generally upto date prior to enquiring about stock availability for the Saturday you choose to visit. If we dont respond to an email enquiry asking if a certain breed is avaliable , its because the information is already on the website. There are two lists below , the Commercial heavy layers are bred by professional hatcheries of our choosing having tried several over the years. The pure breed list will show all of the birds we can have - but availability of htese jumps about a lot , naturally there is a big price difference between pure breeds that lay less and have parent stock to be cared for throughout the year as opposed to the sex-linked heavy layers that come to us as sexed chicks at the start of the season. The Prices and availability page will give you the updates on current availability. We can't predict what purebreed stock we will have as it is influenced by lay, hatch, and sexing rates.
Commercial lay rate hens
We have these all through the season. Please please please dont be conned, it is very easy to produce lookalikes, but appearence of these birds is only a by-product to enable easier sexing at hatch, the genetic strains of purebreeds that offer real hardiness, good consistant temperament, long laying life (in our case over 5 years, usually more) are rare and take decades to build up.
The Welshpoultry Blacktail (pullets and hatching eggs)
This hen is a very dependable heavy layer, They are a cross of Light sussex and Rhode Island Red. You'll notice the Black on the tail and flight feathers from the sussex, and the black on the neck is often replaced with a Gold Lacing, we often sell out of these birds first. As a hybrid, easy to produce, however whilst you can produce the same appearance, you cant produce the same egg production, hardyness and temperament. The chicks are colour sexed at hatch
The Silver sussex (pullets and hatching eggs)
The Silver sussex is a negative image of the Light Sussex, with the bonus of the black oily feather of the Rhondda Rock, always a striking addition to any flock. Availability is limited on this hybrid as we produce it on site using our small flock of commercial pures. It can go out as fertile eggs where the chicks are colour sexed at hatch
The Sussex Pont (pullets and hatching eggs)
The commercial strain of sussex isn't as nicely marked as its purebreed origins, but retains the black feathers on the neck, flight feathers and tail feathers. Fast growing and often a family fave laying salmon coloured eggs. Very docile and freindly, loves a dust bath to clean those white feathers
The Barred rock (pullets only)
The barred rock has proven to be our best layer alongside white leghorns and rhondda rocks in terms of Winter reliability , matching the others in terms of numbers, not surprising as we have some of the very few and excellect barred plynouth rock parent stock in the UK. They seem to go longer before their first moult and dont flinch during the first Winter, sometimes second and third if wormed, thereaftar reliably returning to lay in each early Spring.
The Rhondda Blue (pullets and hatching eggs)
A lovely looking lilac to light grey shade of feather, very docile and freindly, lays a standard tan coloured egg. The chicks in this colour are very cute. Adult birds happy to sit on your lap for ages. If these birds were anymore laid back, they'd fall over, gentle giants. We use feather sexing to sex these, so often advise taking them post 6 weeks of age when any remaining boys will show as its the hardest type of sexing.
Utility White Leghorn (pullets and hatching egg)
A lovely bird when it behaves iteslf, more flighty than the others but the strongest layer of white eggs. Independent and strong minded to go where she wants to go but the glamor of the red floppy comb and big fan tailfeathers give you the permission to be like that. These birds are clever, if theres a weakness she'll find it and exploit it. Oue favourite, but cant be trusted
The Rhondda Rock (pullets and fertile eggs)
Often referred to as the Blackrock which is actually an owned and legally protected name by our freinds at Muirfield Hatchery up in Scotland. There are various strains of this traditional hybrid produced by several hatcheries, having tried them all we find our Dutch variant we now rear and our own strain we've built up over decades is the best all rounder in the Welsh Mountains, attractive, very hardy, weather-proof and reliable long term layer regardless of season. You'll notice the oily sheen in the black feather, they say these birds are part duck !
Pure / Rare Breed List
Please be aware these birds are the best layers for their breeds, but not to be placed in the same league as the heavy layers and can suppress lay in the heavy layers and fertility can and will synchronise.
Why buy your birds from us ?
Firstly, from a combination of the best stock available and the way we rear them by hand outdoors (weather permitting) you cant go wrong. it takes more effort and time and money, but we dont lose any birds and can offer a no quibble 28 day guarantee as problems are so rare, its nothing to organise the odd replacement if you have bad luck
Secondly, Welshpoultry only exists from the desire to get people keeping garden flocks and reduce the demand for eggs from caged hens. Sadly this cruel practice seems to be endless. Ironically we do not advocate battery hen rescue, in our opinion its only the organisations that set themselves up as grant recieving charities that benefit and a proportion of chickens that cope with the stress and fully recover. Our view is simple, one of our birds, laying well for 4 years or more will prevent 3 birds going into a cage and so prevent suffering, you may not think you are buying caged hen eggs, but in reality its estimated that a large proportion of free range eggs are in fact from Spanish and Russian caged systems, plus the labelling such as "Farm fresh" and a picture of a cockeral on a farm gate on the box, distracting from the tiny writing about eggs from caged hens is further intent to trick you. Even some free range systems aren't what they seem; DEFRA estimated that only 14% of free range birds go outside due to feed rationing and external engineering to deter ranging. However, as an owner, you can supply the highest welfare eggs possible and make enough money to pay for the hobby with some to spare at £1.50 per box of 6. We fully respect the noble cause of trying to give an end of commercial life hen a chance of a fresh start, but we have witnessed the problems that come with this process.
1. Release of birds and diseases such as mycoplasma into wider populations. Every month we have customers that lost half their ex batts and now want to buy from us to top up - sadly we have to refuse to sell to them until their remaining birds die out and they sterilise and move their coop.
2. The lack of proper rehabilitation , placing the birds in greater stress and many dont make it
3. The sudden appearance of "young laying hens, £8" available everywhere on facebook only 4 weeks after a collection of 7,000 20 month old free range birds in decent feather for £1.50 each. There are people who buy 200, bring them on and then con people, the charities undertake no follow up on the fate of the birds they pass on.
4. Factory farms justifying there practice by refering to how the chickens "retire" to new homes.
PREVENTION IS BETTER THAN CURE, what we do doesn't raise a minimum wage, but pays for fencing, and land management of the wider farm. Its no gold mine, but we can all do our bit to get chickens back in the gardens and help reduce demand for hens living in cages.
BEWARE OF COWBOY BREEDERS
During the covid lockdown, the demand for garden poultry grew astronomically , no eggs, no garden centres, money available - a perfect storm.
The result was a high demand followed by jokers, farmers sons, hobby breeders suddenly becoming experts in genetics and claiming to produce heavy laying hybrids. In reality anyone can produce a bird that in appearance looks like any of our commercial rate layers, however the similarity stops there. Our own long laying life hybrids have quite an ancestry. This is why we have to combine our own blood lines and buy in from professional hatcheries we have proven to produce birds that have similar traits from being in egg production ourselves for many years before becong a poultry grower and seller.
THE GOLDEN RULE .....NEVER rush into a purchase, birds are being bred all the time, get your setup ready first.
Dont read too many book and articles, get the common sense basics right then talk to people like us and freinds with hens.
Buy lively but sociable hens , but not nutters that arent used to humans, you want bright eyes, clean bums and a bit of spirit.
Dont buy fully mature hens unless from an actual grower like us, too many old hens post moult are being sold as early lay hens, leaving the owner with hens to feed and few eggs.
There are some good resources on facebook, we find that the books are filling pages with old wives tales not really suited to modern hen strains much of the time. We recommend www.facebook.com/chickenkeepinguk for general queries
We produce our own no nonsense "Welshpoulty guide to chicken keeping" covering everything from feed to dealing with common ailments" being released in 2021 and some youtube videos that run alongside the guide will also be available.