These gems were created during the end of the 19th century in Warren, Ohio. Buckeyes are the only standard breed recognized by the American Poultry Association to be created by a woman, Nettie Metcalf, and are the only breed in the American class to have pea combs. Nettie even sent some of her Buckeyes to Rhode Island to help with improving what we know today as Rhode Island Reds.
Buckeyes became endangered during the 20th century when industrial poultry came into the picture. By 2003 there were only 72 known breeders. In 2005 they were placed in a special breeding program to recover the breed to its original splendor and place in backyard flocks.
Buckeyes are popular for high egg numbers and flavorful meat. They handle winter well and can thrive in both hot and cold environments. Because they have game bird in their genetics, they do best in a free range environment however; this doesn’t prevent them from being friendly and social little things. Buckeyes are very active and are said to be good mousers!
As stated previously, Buckeyes have pea combs, yellow legs and deep mahogany feather, similar to the color of buckeye tree nuts. They have short, broad backs, meaty thighs, powerful wings and thick breasts. They are a fantastic and robust dual purpose bird, perfect for homestead life.
Buckeyes are still on the threatened list today.
Buckeye hens will lay around 200 medium brown eggs a year.
Cocks weigh 9 pounds.
Hens weigh about 6.5 pounds.