We own several brahma chickens, and they make wonderful pets who lay lovely brown eggs (we also have one that lays lavender eggs!).
In this article, I’m going to tell you everything there is to know about this breed!
While brahma chickens are known for growing into beasts the size of large turkeys, giving it the nickname “The Majestic One” by the American Brahma Club (1), and the equal honor of the “king of chickens” (2) the average brahma isn’t so large.
How Big Is The Brahma Chicken?
While this breed can be as tall as 30 inches (although this is rare and depends on the breeder), the average brahma chicken size is the same as other chickens. Even in our own flock, they vary in size, with one about 8 inches tall and another about 18 inches tall. Bantam brahma breeds are even smaller – about 6 inches tall.
How Long Does a Brahma Chicken Live For?
Like any other types of chickens, such as silkie chickens, araucanas, or speckled sussex chickens, brahmas can live 5-8 years, depending on the quality of care you provide. Providing a daily meal of 16% protein chicken feed, fresh water, a warm home, and veterinary care can extend their lives.
Are Brahma Hens Broody?
By and large, no. However, this will depend largely on the individual hen. Brahmas are particularly susceptible to broody behavior if another hen has decided she wants to hatch eggs, too.
Bea, one of our brahma hens, decided to go broody in her second year, and hatched a single chick. My other brahma chicken is a great daily layer, but isn’t broody at all.
If your brahma goes broody, it’s best to let her hatch her eggs (as long as they embryos are developing – candle them to find out). If the eggs aren’t developing, then remove them from the nest before they explode.
Are Brahma Chickens Good Egg Layers?
Yes! Brahma chicken eggs are a lovely brown color, and the hens lay consistently – up to about 300 eggs per year. The number of “butt nuggets” laid will depend on the individual, her diet, and the quality of her environment. You can improve the chances your chicken will lay if you provide her a secure home, a quality layer feed with 16% protein and plenty of calcium, fresh water, and a clean nest with nesting herbs.
You can see photos of brahma chicken eggs laid by our hens here:
Do Brahma Chickens Lay Large Eggs?
The Brahma chickens lay medium to large eggs. The yolks are also large and delicious. You can improve the color of the yolks by adding herbs such as calendula to their diet.
What Color Eggs Do Brahma Hens Lay?
This chicken breed lays brown eggs, although the shade can vary from layer to layer. The chicken’s diet, stress level, and the weather can effect the shade of her eggs as well. When a hen is stressed, she might lay a lighter shade of brown, or the color might be dotted with white. If the hen’s diet is poor or the weather is very hot, you also might see different shades on the same egg.
How Many Eggs Does a Brahma Chicken Lay?
Approximately 300 per year, or 5-6 eggs each week. This number will vary based on her feed, her age, and the time of year. While brahmas do very well in the cold, hens don’t typically lay during the shorter days of the year (unless supplementary light is provided), or when they’re very young or very old. If the hen’s diet is poor, she won’t lay regularly, which will effect how many eggs she lays.
How Old Are Brahma Chickens When They Start Laying Eggs?
Typically brahmas start laying eggs when they’re 6 or 7 months old. However, it can take up to 12 months for the hen to start laying, particularly if she’s a larger hen, or if she matures during the winter months.
Are Brahma Chickens Friendly?
Yes, brahmas are very friendly, as long as you’ve raised them to enjoy the company of people (feed them lots of treats and they’ll be yours forever). They are quiet, docile, and calm birds who love to take treats from your hand and get cuddles. They get along great with other chickens, as well. The roosters aren’t prone to attacking humans, although this will depend on the individual rooster and the time of year.
What Colors Are Brahma Chickens?
There’s three colors of brahmas recognized by the Standard of Perfection: Light, Dark, and Buff. Each type is unique and very beautiful. According to the Livestock Conservancy, “Brahmas are large chickens with feathers on shanks and toes, pea comb, smooth fitting plumage with dense down in all sections, and broad, wide head with skull projecting over the eyes – termed “beetle brow.” (2)
The earliest brahma chicken colors – the light and the dark variants – were first included in the first Standard of Perfection of the American Poultry Association in 1874, while the Buff variant was added in the 1920s.
Where To Buy Brahma Chickens
There are several chicken breeder farms that selectively breed and raise healthy and quality Brahma Chickens. You can check them out here:
This is where we purchased our brahmas. They arrived safely and have been very healthy. Cackle Hatchery is family owned and located in Missouri.
Purely Poultry is another family owned business. They have fair prices.
Meyer Hatchery has over 35 years of experience. They offer over 160 breeds of poultry including chickens, ducks, geese, turkeys, guineas, peafowl and game birds.
This company has been praised by numerous publications ranging from The Wall Street Journal, Time Magazine, New Yorker Magazine, and has appeared on such television shows as The Martha Stewart Show, Bloomberg TV, ABC News Nightline, and The Today Show. You can visit My Pet Chicken here.
Private breeders nationwide
You can find a complete list of breeders (that are affiliated with the American Brahma Club) here.
How to Care For Brahma Chickens
Brahma chickens require daily feeding and fresh, clear water daily. As baby chicks, you should provide your brahmas a chick starter that’s 18% protein, as well as clean water. You can mix organic apple cider vinegar or apple cider vinegar granules with the water to promote good gut flora. You can read more about how to raise day old baby chicks here.
For hens, you should provide a quality layer feed with at least 16% protein and an extra calcium supplement to ensure strong eggshells. Adding herbs to her nesting box will promote laying.
If your hens are broody, be sure to keep a high protein feed and water close to her for easy access.
Brahma hens tend to be the favorite of roosters – keep a close watch on your hens to ensure they’re not hurt by roosters. If your hen has lost feathers due to roosters or if she’s molting, you can offer a high protein supplement to promote growth.
So, Is The Brahma Chicken Right For You?
Overall, the Brahma chicken is an ideal bird for you are considering of raising larger sized chickens. They’re very friendly, and lay nice, large eggs. Would you add them to your flock?
Maat van Uitert is a backyard chicken and sustainable living expert. She is also the author of Chickens: Naturally Raising A Sustainable Flock, which was a best seller in it’s Amazon category. Maat has been featured on NBC, CBS, AOL Finance, Community Chickens, the Huffington Post, Chickens magazine, Backyard Poultry, and Countryside Magazine. She lives on her farm in Southeast Missouri with her husband, two children, and about a million chickens and ducks. You can follow Maat on Facebook here and Instagram here.