Developed by Mrs. Nettie Metcalf of Warren, Ohio in 1896, she named her poultry breed for Ohio’s nickname, “the Buckeye State.” Buckeyes are the only American chicken breed created entirely by a woman. The Livestock Conservancy lists the Buckeye heritage breed at the priority of “Watch.” There is an estimated global population of less than 10,000.

Hatching eggs can be shipped nation-wide. Your ordered hatching eggs are collected on Saturday and/or Sunday, ship out on Monday and arrive at most U.S. addresses by Thursday. Live poultry – baby chicks and started pullets – are only offered to Wyoming poultry keepers due to the rural mail service. Baby chicks are available by pre-order, and hatch from March to May with in-state delivery or on-farm pickup available.

When Melissa receives your order for hatching eggs, baby chicks or started pullets she will contact you to schedule the shipping or on-farm pickup.

Characteristics: Active, gentle temperament. Good forager when free-range. According to the breed standard, established in 1904, its plumage ideally resembles the dark red hue of the Buckeye tree seeds.

Eggs: Medium-sized, Brown. Average 220-275 eggs annually.

Meat: As a dual-purpose heavy breed for eggs and meat, the males average 9 lbs. mature weight and females 6.5 lbs.

Cold Tolerance: Buckeyes sport a pea comb and stocky build, which makes this breed very cold hardy and frostbite resistant.




The American Buckeye Poultry Club provides the below history resources for the heritage breed:

An article written by Nettie Metcalf herself, for the Pacific Fancier Magazine in their Volume VII, No. 4, April 1909 edition. The article has been scanned in its entirety, and contains some pictures of her birds and both her farms: the one in Ohio where she created her famous birds, and in California where she subsequently moved. It even has information on the birds she used to create her Buckeyes, and the breed club she founded and was President of, The National Red Feather Club.

As well, here is an article about the history of the Buckeye chicken, written by Mrs. Metcalf herself, that was published in the October, 1917 edition of Poultry Success magazine.

There is great section on Buckeye chickens in the historical book “The Mating and Breeding of Poultry” by Harry M. Lamon and Rob R. Slocum.

A comparison between Buckeye and Rhode Island Red chickens, from the May, 1912 copy of American Poultry Advocate.


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