The poultry world would like to introduce a new favorite designer chicken, the Sapphire Blue Plymouth Rock. Also known as the Sapphire Gem or Blue Plymouth Rock, this relatively new breed of chicken has grown in popularity over the past few years because they are excellent egg layers, have lovely plumage, and are friendly. If you are interested in learning more about the Sapphire Blue Plymouth Rock, this article goes over all the essential information about this specialty chicken.
Quick Facts about Sapphire Blue Plymouth Rock Chicken
|Breed Name:||Sapphire Blue Plymouth Rock Chicken|
|Place of Origin:||Czech Republic|
|Uses:||Large to extra-large eggs|
|Roosters (Male) Size:||Medium, 7 pounds|
|Hen (Female) Size:||Medium, 6 pounds|
|Color:||Lavender-blue feathers with gold or grey feather pattern around the neck|
|Climate Tolerance:||Tolerates both warm and cold temperatures|
|Care Level:||Easy; good for beginning chicken farmers|
|Production:||5-6 eggs per week; around 290 eggs per year|
|Optional:||Gets along with other breeds; not noisy|
Sapphire Blue Plymouth Rock Chicken Origins
The precise origin of the Sapphire Blue Plymouth Rocks is not certain; however, chicken experts believe they originated from the Czech Republic. The Sapphire Blue is a hybrid chicken, thought to be a mix between Blue Plymouth Rock and a Barred Plymouth Rock chicken. Since this is a relatively new breed of chicken, the Sapphire Blue is not recognized by the American Poultry Association (APA).
Sapphire Blue Plymouth Rock Chicken Characteristics
This breed of chicken is ideal for a novice chicken farmer for several reasons. Sapphire Blues are both cold and heat tolerant, so they are adaptable to various climates. Owners of this breed will not see a decline in egg production in colder temperatures. They are also excellent foragers. If you have an adequately sized outdoor pen, these independent chickens can find plenty of tasty treats on the ground.
Sapphire Blues are not noisy chickens, making them good chickens if you have close neighbors. However, they are an alert breed and will be aware if there are predators in the area. They have a calm and friendly temperament. This makes them get pets as well, even for children! They can even be held and gently cuddly like other domesticated pets. Because of their friendly and gentle temperament, Sapphire Blues can get along with other chickens. They are an overall manageable chicken and easy to raise for beginners.
This breed is also not known for having serious health issues, which is another positive characteristic of this chicken. However, Sapphire Blues are not immune to lice and other parasites that affect all chickens. They should be checked for any signs of illness and treated by a vet if needed.
If you are interested in raising chickens for egg production, the Sapphire Blue might be an ideal choice. On average, the Sapphire Blue hen lays about 290 large brown eggs per year. The average backyard hen lays about 250 eggs per year, making the Sapphire Blue a superior laying chicken. While they are large enough to be bred as meat chickens, most farmers and chicken owners do not use them for that purpose because of their excellent laying ability. However, some people use the Sapphire Blues for meat once egg production stops, as they are medium-sized chickens. But most people choose to keep the retired Sapphire Blues as pets because of their friendly and docile temperament.
Besides their excellent egg-laying ability, Sapphire Blues get a lot of attention because of the color of their plumage. Sapphire Blues are a sex-linked chicken variety, meaning that when they hatch, you can tell the difference between male and female chickens based on their color. Both sexes of this breed have lavender-blue feathers, with males having a white dot on their heads or wings. Female chicks will develop a ring of gold or grey feathers around their neckline as they mature. Both sexes are medium-sized chickens, weighing between 6-7 pounds.
While the Sapphire Blue is tolerant of the cold, they are a single-comb breed. Combs are the fleshy appendage on top of its head, usually red. Single-comb chickens are prone to frostbite, so Sapphire Blues should have a protected place to rest on colder nights.
Population, Distribution & Habitat
Sapphire Blues are considered a designer chicken, so it is unsure how many Sapphire Blues there are on farms or people’s homesteads within the United States. As chickens go, this breed is more challenging to obtain than other common breeds. This is because they are a new breed, and their year of origin is unknown. Additionally, since the APA does not recognize the Sapphire Blues, they are not considered a proper breed. This could be another reason why the exact numbers of the Sapphire Blue are not recorded.
Sapphire Blues are excellent foragers and like to have space to move around. They make easy free-ranging chickens in all climates, as long as they have access to a coop during the months when it gets very cold. How much space should you have for your chickens? Plan to have at least 4 square feet per chicken.
Are Sapphire Blue Plymouth Rocks Good for Small-Scale Farming?
Sapphire Blue Plymouth Rock chickens are an ideal chicken for small-scale farming. Small-scale farms often do not have too much space for multiple farm animals, or the farms or homesteads might be close to other houses. Since Sapphire Blues are not as noisy as other chickens, are independent, and are excellent egg-layers, they can be easy and profitable for small-scale farmers.
It is clear why the Sapphire Blue Plymouth Rock is becoming a rising star in the chicken world. Although Sapphire Blues are not considered an official breed, they can still make excellent layers for individual homesteaders or on small to medium farms. Even if the number of eggs your chicken produces is not a high priority, they make wonderful pets. Children find them calm and cuddly companions. Sapphire Blues are sturdy, independent, and easy to manage. This makes them a popular choice for both beginner and professional chicken owners.
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Featured Image Credit: Monika Valachovic, Shutterstock