Jersey Giant Chicken Breed Guide: Facts, Size, Eggs, Pictures

Want to raise this Jersey Giant Chicken? Before buying a few chicks, you must know every detail about this breed. 

Jersey Giant is an excellent choice for those who want to raise some big egg-laying chickens.

Here in this article, you’ll get complete and brief information about the facts, history, size, color, appearance, and benefits of raising and the problems associated with Jersey Giant chickens.

Before making any decision, briefly go through this breed guide so that you can decide whether this breed variety will suit your backyard or not. 

What is Jersey Giant Chicken?

A black Jersey Giant Pullet inside coop fensing
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A black Jersey Giant Pullet

Jersey Giant chicken, as the name suggests it’s a giant chicken that is widely bred for egg purposes. This variety of chicken is developed by mixing Black Java, Black Tangshan, and Dark Brahmas, and it was named Jersey Giants in 1917.

It’s a variety of sex-linked chicken, and it’s a hybrid chicken breed. These breeds are famous for their size.

Jersey Giant chickens are larger than any other chicken variety but are very friendly, gentle, and calm personalities. That’s why most of the poultry farmers like to raise them.

Those chicken owners searching for a good-natured breed might consider adding this Jersey giant chicken to their flocks.

Common Names of Jersey Giant Chicken

Below are few common names of Jersey Giant Chicken-

  1. Giant
  2. Black Giant

History of Jersey Giant Chicken

The Jersey Giant Chicken is the largest chicken breed in the United States and is initially developed by two persons, namely Thomas Black and John, near Jobstown, New Jersey.

This breed is considered one of the world’s huge chicken breeds that lay giant eggs.

Earlier, this breed of chicken was used as a meat bird, as this chicken has a huge body and many chicken owners thought they could make a massive demand for these large roosting birds. 

There was a significant demand around the 1870s and 1890s, and they surpassed the standard turkey at that time.

Jersey Giant chicken takes 8 to 9 months to reach its full size, usually an extended period if we compare it with other chicken breeds.

The availability of turkey in the market increased in less price, as a result of which the demand of this Jersey Giant chickens as a roosting fowl fell. 

Also Read:  Isa Brown Chicken Breed Guide: Size, Variety, Eggs, Care & Pictures

Lifespan

The Jersey Giant chicken lifespan is about 6-7 years.

Jersey Giant Chicken Breed Standard 

Jersey Giant Hen
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White Jersey Giant chickens have white color feathers and cream or willow-colored legs. The Blue Jersey giants have darker and black shanks, and they are greyish blue.

Original breed standards indicate that all Jersey Giant chickens have yellow skin, and they have red combs and wattles with brown eyes. Their beaks are usually pale yellow or black, which mainly depends on their feather coloring.

Usually, Jersey Giants have a muscular body, and the feathers are close to their body, as a result of which these birds have an elegant and clean appearance. 

Legs have no feathers, and the tails of Jersey Giant chicken are relatively short. 

Egg Production

These hens go broody very less, but they aren’t great sitters because of their weight. Sadly they are prone to break the eggs. That’s why, if possible, use an incubator to hatch their eggs to get cute chicks.

The Jersey Giant chickens are excellent egg layers. The eggs of this chicken are brown. They are remarkably bigger than the average chicken egg. 

Because of their large size, the chicks take a couple of extra days to hatch. The weight of Jersey Giant hen eggs is around 55-60 gm.

Some studies reveal that the Jersey Giant chickens lay more eggs than any other large breeds. Also, this breed is considered a pretty good egg layer

On average, they produce 2-4 eggs each week, and in total, you will get 150 to 200 eggs in a year. 

They are good mothers, and they enjoy taking care of their chicks. But because of their heavyweight, they are not able to brood their chicks easily.

Temperament of Jersey Giant Chicken

This giant is a docile and mellow bird. Even the roosters are very friendly birds. They are excellent backyard or barnyard pets. 

Jersey Giants are very good with children, and their large size can even be intimidating to the smaller children as they stand so tall. Because of their gentle temperament, they are considered a great choice when choosing the bird that will share space with children or pets. 

They work very well to establish flocks as they are very well with other chickens and do not peck often.

Jersey Giants might seem quite imposing because of their large size, but they do not use their size to intimidate other animals, and they are nonaggressive birds. 

Also Read:  Plymouth Rock Chicken: Breed Guide, Varieties, Colors, Size, Eggs, Images

Many chickens prefer to stay away from the Great Giant’s way, and hawks also do not prey on them, as these chickens are too large for the hawk to carry away.

But hawks may attack their chicks so use a good chicken coop camera and fencing for your chicken coop.

Color, Size, Appearance, Characteristics of Jersey Giant Chicken

Jersey Giant Chicken
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Color and Appearance

Jersey Giant is a sex-linked chicken, so it’s available in 3 varieties of color registered in the American Poultry Association. The three varieties have a slight difference in leg colors.

Black Jersey Giant- The black variety is the first color of this breed and is widely recognized in 1922. They have four toes, clean legs, and black shanks.

White Jersey Giant- Pure breeding white birds are formed by breeding between black flock and those having a white spot and are registered in 1947. They have clean legs, four toes, dark willow shanks.

Blue Jersey Giant- Blue breed varieties were formed by breeding plumage color and were registered in 2003. They have willow color shanks with clean legs and four toes.

Black Jersey Giant chickens are black, and they have black feathers and legs. Their feathers also have an iridescent purple or green sheen to them in the sunlight.

They are described as statuesque and stand up to 2 feet tall and have a large framed body, and they are slow growers and take about one year for their body to fill out. Their body forms a U- shape with their backs having a slight curve.

Size

Earlier, this breed standard was a large frame with yellow skin and a single comb, nowadays their size is relatively smaller than their ancestors, but still, they are giant birds.

According to the USDA standards, male Jersey Giant weighs around 13 to 15 pounds and stands between 22 to 26 inches, whereas the female weighs around 11 pounds and stands between 16 to 20 inches.

Characteristics

The Jersey Giant Chicken is very friendly and is perfect for families having pets and children. Please read our guide to know more about pet chickens.

Benefits of Raising Jersey Giant chickens

These birds are healthy and are not susceptible to many illnesses but doing proper vaccination is essential.

It is one of the best and largest dual-purpose chicken for backyard chicken lovers. You will get both eggs and meat from this chicken. 

The large size of Jersey Giant chicken is also unique, which gives a reason to raise this bird. Also, they are very calm and friendly, so they will quickly go friendly with already present flocks in the chicken coop.

Also Read:  Top 7 Best Chicken Breeds That Lay White Eggs (with Images)

Problems in Raising Jersey Giant chickens

One of the significant potential health issues is leg injury. Usually, these injuries occur when the birds fly or jump from a high space.

Because of their bulky body, landings can often lead to injuries. So, it is advisable to place the perches closer to the ground to reduce the risk of such injuries. 

They require a good amount of space to roam, and these Jersey Giant chickens prefer to have a staple diet, similar to other chickens.

As they take a long time to grow fully, they require more food, but you can make money by selling eggs and birds when they become adults.

They are good foragers because their heavyweight predators like foxes, wild dogs, and raccoons easily harm them. So, build good fencing for them. 

Please read our guide on the best chicken wire and hardware cloth for fencing.

Some Tips for Raising Jersey Giant Chickens

Jersey Giant chickens are robust and relatively cold hardy. They are excellent in cold weather climates and may not fare as well in hot weather climates. 

These chickens should receive an adequate supply of vitamins and minerals, which help the chicken, reach its full growth potential. It also helps the chicken grow more muscular bones, reducing the risk of potential leg injuries.  

Adding vitamins and minerals to a chicken’s food is an excellent way to provide a proper diet and allows the Jersey Giant chicken to roam free and forage.

Before creating a space for the Jersey Giant chickens, you should keep in mind that their perches are placed low to the ground. It makes the Jersey Giant chicken easily reach the perches, with less chance of leg injuries.

Also, Jersey Giant chickens are large, so you need more space than other small to medium-sized chicken breeds. You need around 6-8 sq feet space per bird inside the coop and 25-30 sq. feet in the run area.

Conclusion

For several years, this Jersey Giant chicken serves as an excellent addition to other flocks. Many people raise the bird for meat, but now it is a dual-purpose chicken.

They are very gentle and have a friendly personality. The calm temperament of this Jersey Giant chicken is the primary reason behind its popularity.

Are you raising Jersey Giant chickens in your backyard? Share your experience in the comment section.

Jersey Giant Chicken Breed Guide: Facts, Size, Eggs, Pictures
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