Use: Valued around the United States for excellent egg-laying capability and meat production, the Plymouth Rock is a superb choice as a dual-purpose breed for small farms. Hardy layers of brown eggs, this breed is available in seven varieties and makes an excellent table fowl as well. The White Plymouth Rock is one of the foundation breeds of the modern broiler industry.
History: A chicken called Plymouth Rock was first exhibited at America’s first poultry show in Boston in 1849. Although the history of those birds is somewhat muddled, it’s generally accepted that the chickens exhibited in Massachusetts in 1869 became the breed today known as Barred Plymouth Rocks. These chickens were developed from Dominique and Black Java fowl common to that area. Barred Plymouth Rocks were admitted to the first American Standard of Perfection in 1874 and the other varieties followed in later years.
Conformation: Plymouth Rocks are yellow-skinned, one of the larger breeds in the American Class. They are available in Barred, White, Buff, Columbian, Partridge, Silver Penciled and Blue. All varieties should be well-fleshed and have a medium-sized, single comb with five well-defined points. Standard weights: Cock: 9 ½ lbs., Cockerel: 7 ½ lbs., Hen: 8 lbs., and Pullet: 6 lbs.
Special Considerations/Notes: Often referred to as “America’s Chicken” this breed is an excellent all-purpose fowl, handles cold weather well and is highly adaptable to various production systems.