If you're looking for a friendly and productive addition to your backyard flock, the Golden Comet chicken may be just what you need. This guide covers everything you need to know about this popular breed, from their egg-laying abilities to their temperament and care requirements.
Table of Contents
The Golden Comet chicken breed originated in United States hatcheries. This breed is considered a sex-link (like black sex-links), which means male and female can be identified immediately after hatching.
Golden Comets are also known by several other names including Cinnamon Queen, Golden Buff, Golden Sex-Link. and Red Star.
The parents of this breed include a Rhode Island Red rooster such as a New Hampshire, bred with a Rhode Island White or White Rock hen.
Golden Comet Chickens have not been accepted into the American Poultry Association as of 2023.
Heritage or Hybrid
Golden Comet Chickens are hybrids.as they can be crossbred from a variety of different breeds.
This breed was created to be strong egg layers, as well as other desirable traits including a docile temperament, cold hardy, heat tolerant, etc.
Golden Comet chickens are golden red (sometimes auburn) with visible lighter cream or white feathers.
A few common features of this breed include:
Comb is Red
4 (Four) Toes
Note some breeds of chickens can live 12+ years. Due to the fact that comets are hybrids naturally reduces their life expectancy as heritage breeds typically live longer.
Similar to Isa Browns, Comets have a shorter life expectancy is related to their high production of eggs as it takes a toll on their bodies and reproductive system.
Egg Color & Production
Egg production starts between 16 weeks and 19 weeks (roughly 4 to 5 months), which is slightly earlier than most breeds.
You can expect 5-6 medium to large brown eggs a week and are considered to be excellent layers. In their first year, they can produce up to 330 eggs with proper diet and care.
Note that egg production does decrease by 10 to 15% per year as chickens age until they stop laying altogether.
Golden Comet Chickens are not known to be broody or have a tendency to sit on the nest. Breeders have worked hard to breed out this trait.
Since this breed is a hybrid, breeding these birds will not produce a Golden Comet chick. The only way to do this is to breed the pure-bred rooster and hen.
The general rule of thumb is that heritage breeds are able to breed and yield the same breed of offspring, whereas hybrid breeds are not always able to. Even two hybrids of the same breed will likely produce a mixed breed chick. This is because each hybrid will provide genetics for one of their parent breeds.
The only way to do this is to breed the pure-bred rooster and hen.
Due to the fact that the breed was specifically designed to have certain characteristics, there are health issues that may come up with breeding your birds, leading to unhealthy chicks.
Golden Comets are well known for being a cold hardy breed as well as heat tolerant.
While they are tolerant to the heat, they do need access to shade in hot and sunny weather.
In the winter it is important to ensure they are warm, have access to clean water, and are not showing signs of frostbite on their combs, wattles, or feet. They likely will not require accommodations such as a heater or brooder in the winter unless there is extreme cold.
Golden Comets stress their reproductive systems with their high egg production. Due to this, it is common for them to develop cancer, tumors, prolapses, and experience other reproductive health issues.
We provide our chickens with vitamins in their water as a precaution to ensure they do not have any deficiencies. This is especially important for younger birds still integrating into the flock.
We also offer free choice oyster shells as a source of grit and to strengthen the shells of eggs. If a chicken (especially a strong layer) is deficient in calcium, it can lead to severe health complications and a shortened lifespan.
Of course, it is still possible for them to get parasites and other general illnesses, so it is always good to keep a watchful eye on your flock.
As a slightly larger sized chicken, they are not considered good for an abundance meat production. However, some would consider them to be dual purpose.
However, Comets are more commonly recognized for their egg laying abilities.
Golden Comet chickens are considered a quiet breed as far as noise is concerned. This makes them a good candidate for more urban farms in populated neighborhoods.
While the hen doesn't make an abundance of noise, roosters will crow and can be generally noisy. We would definitely not recommend this breed of rooster for densely populated areas.
In our experience, our hen seldom makes noise and are rather quiet birds.
Many refer to Golden Comet chickens as friendly, calm, and docile.
In our experience, our Comets have never been aggressive towards us. In fact, they are some of our sweeter birds, unlike Barred Rocks that tend to be assertive.
Since they are not prone to aggression or broodiness, they would do well around children.
While by nature the roosters are rarely aggressive, if the ratio of hens to roosters is not appropriate, they can be aggressive with each other roosters. An ideal rooster to hen ratio for this breed is 1 rooster to every 10 hens.
As an average sized breed Golden Comets require 4 square feet per bird in the coop. It is important to ensure your coop has adequate space and height to ensure your birds are comfortable.
Our coop is secure from predator's and limited drafts, but still is unheated.
In an enclosed run, 8 to 10 square feet per bird is recommended for happy and healthy birds.
During hot sunny weather we keep our chickens in a roofed run with lots of airflow and free access to the coop which tends to be shady and cooler. This was sufficient for days that got upwards of 90 degrees and sunny.
It is important to know how to keep your chickens cool in hot weather, view our complete guide for more tips and tricks.
Are They Right For You?
Golden Comets can be a suitable option for beginners due to their docile temperament, cold tolerance, and gentle personality.
Ultimately the purpose of the chicken is a key factor in this decision. Comets produce an abundance of eggs per year once mature.
If you are looking for a strong production of large eggs, and a friendly breed, a chicken that does well in colder climates then Golden Comets may be for you!
On the other hand, if you are looking for a meat chicken or a breed you can safely breed yourself, it may be worth considering other breeds.
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