I came across an add for Lavender Orpingtons and the add said "rare". How rare are they really? Any one know?
Actually, Lavender Orpingtons are not a breed but a variety simply based on color. They're being bred now in a small breeding program but they're more of a 'collectible' or a novelty due to their color.
Lavender Orpingtons would be considered a variety within the Orpington breed but I don't believe they're even recognized yet. Here is the blurb on the Orpingtons as a breed, as noted by the AmericanLivestock Breed Conservancy:
We've had Orpingtons for 20 years or more and yes, they're gentle, good layers (good in winter), and dual purpose.
Erin, Cross your own or gear up to begin crossing some -- there are some beautiful backyard birds across America with gorgeous plumage!
Would like to know what other people are raising -- breeds, crosses, etc. Over the years, I've had about 10 different breeds, most have been the minor breeds as recognized by the ALBC. I've tried a few of the Leghorns (too hyper for me) and some other Mediterannean breeds but have to say those Heavy breeds are my favorites for disposition and egg laying qualities. The Orpingtons have become quite the popular small flock bird now. Overall, our best dual-purpose and gentle birds have been the Australorps and Orpingtons. That's what we have now and they're in their 2nd year, having gone through their moult in Jan-Feb. Now that these are to be phased out, we'll bring new ones in. We currently don't have a rooster (many get downright aggressive) but I'm thinking about perpetuating my own flock and crossing some 'just for fun'. All of the roosters we've grown out have been held against the very high standards of a pet Orpington rooster named "Orville". lol
Lynn, you might be interested in this article... it's basically using rooster behaviors to keep your roosters as the 2nd in command (which is a more docile position) and you as the 1st in command... I got my rooster at 6 months old, and he has stayed very easy going for me. I know some of this is plain old temperament, but I've been using these techniques since he came, and so have my kids. He's watchful of his hens, but not aggressive toward any of us.
I have no idea what my hens are. I have a few that I think are SLW crosses, and one that might be jersey giant cross... a couple that are BO crosses, and my rooster is God knows what... lol He was posted at the PO as a "Dominecker", but he has a single comb and splashes of brown in his feathering. NONE of the chicks look anything like the chickens I have, really!! lol One of them is even a white color, only the white looks like it's got a bit of the "lavender" to it... really pretty. I'm hoping it's a pullet. I'll be keeping that one if it is.