Uses: Dual purpose utility meat and eggs.
Eggs: 200 – 250 tinted / brown.
Weight: Cock: 3.85 – 4.55Kg, Hen: 2.95 – 3.6Kg.
Bantam: Cock: 1.02Kg Max, Hen: 2.95-3.6Kg
Colours: Black, Blue, White
Useful to Know: Docile and a good choice to have around with children.
Australorp chickens are frequently overlooked by many poultry keepers yet, it has so many good things going for it! It is a hardy bird that is happy free ranging, is docile and good with children (even if a little heavy to lift up, but does exist in a bantam version) and is a good egg-layer as well as being a reasonable size white skinned meat bird. Being fast growers, they reach point of lay at about 24 to 26 weeks of age. Australorps, like the Orpington will generally not fly very high, making fencing easier.
Australorps get their name from their origin as ‘Australian Orpingtons’ which had been called ‘Utility Type Orpingtons’ before that. They were essentially early Black Orpingtons were imported into Australia around the late 1880’s and refined for Utility purposes and later after the Orpington had been modified in Britain, exported back as Australorps in the early 1920’s.
They are a large, soft-feathered bird and have either glossy black feathers with a lustrous green sheen, or slate blue with dark lacing. The white is very seldom seen. They have a single comb that is moderately large and upright, with five points and a very dark beady eye. Bantam varieties also exist in this breed. They have 4 toes and feather free legs. Look after these girls and they will lay around 200 to 250 eggs in a year for you (depending on the strain) without artificial lighting. Fortunately the breed has not been altered much, unlike the Black Orpington amongst others that has over the years changed from a utility bird into a show bird. Their eggs are medium-sized and light brown in colour.