The Golden Comet chicken breed is one of the most popular breeds in backyard flocks. They’re easy to care for, produce large amounts of eggs, and can often be found online at hatcheries.
On my farm, we have raised Golden Comets exclusively as our egg layers for the last five years. Without a doubt, they’re the most productive, efficient, and easy-to-care-for birds we’ve found.
They lay eggs almost daily and are healthy, happy birds that are incredibly easy to care for.
So if you’re looking for a great bird to add to your flock, then look no further than the Golden Comet!
Here’s an overview of everything you need to know about this amazing breed.
What is the Golden Comet Chicken Breed?
When we first decided to raise Golden Comet chickens, we didn’t know a lot about them. In fact, we were a bit confused by the fact that this was a breed that seemed to have several different names.
The Golden Comet chicken is a hybrid breed of chicken that has been around since the 1990s. It was created by crossing New Hampshire roosters with White Rock hens.
While they are primarily known for their egg-laying prowess, they also make great pets due to their friendly and docile disposition.
The main reason why people keep these birds is because of their amazing egg-laying ability! On average, each hen will lay around 250 to 320 eggs per year, making them one of the best egg layers out there.
You may see the Golden Comet chicken sold by other names, such as Red Star, Gold Sex-Link, Cinnamon Queene, and Golden Buff. Despite the confusing names, it’s all the same breed.
History of the Golden Comet Breed
The modern Golden Comet chicken is actually a hybrid of New Hampshire Reds and White Rocks.
They look a lot like New Hampshire or Rhode Island Reds and can be a bit difficult to tell apart from them.
The most notable difference we’ve been able to detect is that they have a lighter blond feathering than the darker reddish brown of those other two breeds.
The Golden Comet chicken was created by crossing New Hampshire roosters with White Rock hens.
The goal was to create a hybrid bird that could lay up to 300 eggs per year, which would be considerably more than other breeds of chickens at the time.
In 1975, the first Golden Comet chickens were hatched in Hegins, Pennsylvania—and thus, this unique breed was officially born!
Official Breed Standard
Due to its complex origins and makeup of many different breeds, it does not have a unified official breed standard.
This is not a bird that is typically raised for exhibition and is instead raised almost singularly for egg production.
Despite being a hybrid, the Golden Comet exhibits certain characteristics that remain consistent across every bird—they are all incredibly hardy, energetic birds that love to eat and excel at taking care of themselves in a backyard environment.
What Colors Do Golden Comet Chickens Come In?
Unlike some other breeds, they don’t come in many different colors; they have only one color pattern – reddish-brown feathers with white tips on their wings.
Hens are distinguished by their upright U-shaped body, red-brown feathers and white interspersed between them, yellow eyes, beak, and legs.
The males of this variety look quite different with their all-white or mainly white bodies featuring red shoulder feathers – something that adds even more personality to their breed.
Most people don’t realize how different the roosters look, though, since the majority of farms that raise Golden Comets will only keep hens.
Since this is a hybrid egg-laying breed that doesn’t breed true (meaning if you hatch eggs from a Golden Comet hen, the chicks won’t necessarily look like their mother), there’s no reason to keep a rooster around.
The combs and wattles are red on this breed. There is a single upright comb.
What Two Chickens Make a Golden Comet?
Again, these birds, which were developed in the United States during the 1970s, are a cross between two specific hens- the New Hampshire and the White Plymouth Rock.
The White Plymouth Rocks provide their calm temperament, vigorousness, and reliable egg production.
When these two hens are crossed they give us the one-of-a-kind breed known as the Golden Comet.
Size and Weight of Golden Comet Chickens
Golden Comets are known for their size, with males weighing in at 6lbs and females typically hovering around the 4lb mark – significantly less than other meat breeds such as the Jersey Giant or Brahma.
Thanks to their smaller stature, Golden Comets reach market weight faster meaning more efficient use of food and space.
What are Golden Comet Chickens Good For?
Golden Comet Chickens are truly a wonderful, multipurpose bird. Not only are they great layers of large, brown eggs, but they also make great pets due to their calm nature and docile personalities.
Are Golden Comet Chickens Friendly?
Golden Comet Chickens are a friendly and curious breed, willing to come close to humans and show curiosity to strangers.
They are peaceful when kept in a flock and do not react aggressively when confronted by other chickens, making them ideal for families with children as they won’t be easily “rattled”.
A confident breed, they enjoy human companionship immensely and benefit from plenty of foraging opportunities as energetic foragers themselves.
We have raised Golden Comet chickens both by themselves as well as in a flock of Rhode Island Reds.
They get along well with other birds yet aren’t likely to find themselves being bullied by larger animals (like the Rhode Islands).
Egg Laying and Temperament
As you might expect, Golden Comets are some of the best egg-laying chickens you’ll find. Let’s take a closer look.
Are Golden Comet Chickens Good Layers?
Golden Comet chickens have great hybrid vigor, which contributes to their popularity among both commercial and small-scale chicken keepers.
Golden Comets have a faster rate of growth than non-hybrids, reaching maturity much earlier and offering an increased egg yield over time.
They stop laying sooner than other breeds, but since they produce so many eggs within such a short period, they’re considered one of the most prolific breeds of all time.
When Will Golden Comet Chickens Start Laying?
These chickens grow and mature quickly, meaning it’ll only be several weeks from your purchase date before your hen starts producing eggs.
Generally speaking, hens begin laying at around 19 weeks old – but in some cases, they can start as early as 16 weeks!
Again, that kind of egg-laying comes with a trade-off. Although they’ll lay lots of eggs in the first two years – around 250 to 320 – they’ll drop off significantly in productivity after that.
Of all the chicken breeds we have raised, we found that Golden Comets start laying often and consistently much sooner than other breeds.
Not only that, but they lay more eggs during the winter – we put a light in our coop to continue laying, since we sell our eggs locally, and this means that our Golden Comets lay consistently 365 days of the year.
What Color Eggs Do Golden Comet Chickens Lay?
These birds lay large to extra-large brown eggs. Again, they lay approximately 250–320 times per year during their first two years.
How Long Do Golden Comet Chickens Live?
On average, a Golden Comet Chicken has a lifespan of four to five years, possibly even more if given good care and attention.
Although Golden Comets are typically kept as layers, they also make great companions and can become quite affectionate with their family over time.
Tips for Raising Golden Comet Chickens
Here are a few helpful tips for raising your own flock of Golden Comet chickens!
Feeding and Nutritional Needs for Golden Comet Chickens
When it comes to feeding and caring for Golden Comet chickens, the first thing to consider is making sure they have access to a balanced, nutritious diet.
This breed of chicken is known for being an excellent choice for backyard farms due to its hardiness and love of foraging!
Proper nutrition helps them stay healthy and lay plenty of eggs. A good starter feed should be one that’s free from chemicals and has the correct concentrations of protein, vitamins, and minerals.
Garden scraps like fruits or vegetables can be used as treats, while other kitchen scraps like cooked grains are also great supplemental options.
As Golden Comet chickens grow older and get ready to start laying, their feed should also be supplemented with calcium-rich sources such as oyster shells and dried eggshells in order to reduce the risk of eggshell quality issues such as thin shells.
Dealing With Health Concerns/Predators
Although the Golden Comet is very low maintenance, they can run into health issues such as reproductive organ tumors due to their heavy use of these parts.
They are also more likely to suffer from issues like egg yolk peritonitis and egg binding.
They also have large combs which are susceptible to frostbite. They are more susceptible to health problems than other breeds in general, especially as they get older.
That said, they don’t have many other health problems in the early days besides the usual ones – things like lice, mites, and parasites. You can avoid most of these with good coop hygiene and a healthy diet.
The best way to protect Golden Comet chickens from predators? Make sure the coop and run are thoroughly secure.
This includes inspecting all outdoor entry points, such as cracks in woodwork, or loose hinges on doors.
Inside the enclosure, it’s important to use only chicken wire that is extremely fine mesh – this will stop predators from gaining access.
It’s a good idea to put an overhead cover like netting over the run, which can attract predators such as hawks.
These chickens aren’t large or fast by any means – they are birds that have been bred for egg production, not flightiness or agility.
Therefore, you, as the chicken keeper, will need to take extra steps to keep your birds safe.
Fun Facts About the Golden Comet Chicken
Golden Comet chickens, again, are some of the best egg-laying birds you’ll find. They’re friendly and docile – and great around little kids – meaning they’re an excellent choice for most small family farms or homesteads.
Not only that, but if you live in an area where you aren’t allowed to have roosters, sex-link birds like Golden Comets are the way to go.
You don’t have to worry about any “oopsies” since you can be more or less guaranteed that you only get hens in your flock.
Golden Comet hens very rarely go broody. As hybrid sex link chickens, this is a trait that has more or less been bred out of them.
That said, if you decide to incubate your own eggs, you’re probably going to be disappointed.
Some people assume that eggs from sex-link breeds won’t hatch at all. That’s not necessarily true.
You will have chicks hatch from the eggs of Golden Comet chickens. However, the resulting birds are not going to look like the hen who laid it.
In other words, you can’t hatch a Golden Comet chicken from a Golden Comet hen. The genetics are too scrambled. The offspring will be crossbred.
Is the Golden Comet Chicken Right For You?
Raising Golden Comet Chickens is ideal for those who are looking for a low-maintenance egg-laying bird that won’t require much attention and space.
These friendly and calm birds can easily become pets as they require minimal grooming, love to be handled, and since you won’t have any roosters to worry about, there won’t be any crowing to disturb the neighbors!
But be warned; despite their hardy nature and stunning looks, these chickens will not likely live a long life.
You may find yourself dealing with the regular reproductive tract issues that come with this breed of chicken.
It’s also challenging to raise Golden Comets as dual-purpose birds. They are on the small side, so you won’t get a decent-sized carcass for the dinner table.
That said, it’s a trade-off. If you want a chicken that lays the most eggs possible, go with the Golden Comet.
If you’d like a more well-rounded breed, you’d be better off with a Rhode Island Red, Wyandotte, Plymouth Rock, or another type of non-hybrid heritage breed chicken.
The Golden Comet chicken is a small bird, usually weighing around four to five pounds. It has gold to red plumage and a single red comb.
Golden Comet chickens are hearty birds that consume a variety of foods. They enjoy a natural diet of seeds, insects, and other invertebrates found in the wild.
Commercial chicken feed should be their main source of nutrition.
Golden Comets are a hybrid breed of chicken. They are the offspring of New Hampshire and White Rocks.
The Golden Comet is a hybrid of the New Hampshire and White Rock. Nobody is sure which breeds produce Isa Browns, since these French birds are trademarked.
If you’re looking for Golden Comet chickens, your best bet is to search online. They are becoming increasingly popular, and several leading hatcheries can provide you with quality stock.
Rebekah is a high-school English teacher n New York, where she lives on a 22 acre homestead. She raises and grows chickens, bees, and veggies such as zucchini (among other things).