When choosing chickens for your backyard or small farm, you may opt for the ones that lay hundreds of eggs per year. In that case, you are probably interested in hybrid chickens like the Golden Sex Link. This is one breed that is ideal for beginner chicken keepers, children, and small yards, because they are docile, friendly, and hardy. Let’s dive more into the Golden Sex Link chicken breed with this profile and care guide.
Overview of the Golden Sex Link Breed
Hee e is a brief glimpse of this hybrid chicken:
|Egg Production||~300 eggs per year|
|Egg Size and Color||Large, brown|
History of the Golden Sex Link Chicken
The Golden Sex Link is a relatively new breed, developed in the Netherlands during the 1950s. Now, the strain is seen in over 60 countries throughout the world. It was created by crossing a Rhode Island Red rooster with a Rhode Island White hen, resulting in a hybrid bird that exhibits the desirable traits of both parent breeds. Throughout the years, other chickens, such as Cherry Eggers and New Hampshire chickens, were also added to the mix.
The goal of the breeding program was to create a chicken that was highly efficient at egg production while also being hardy and adaptable to a variety of environments. The resulting Golden Sex Link chicken proved to be a successful combination of the two parent breeds, with high egg production and a docile temperament.
Are The Golden Sex Link and Golden Comet the Same Thing?
Often, you will find that there are many hybrid chicken names that sound very similar. For instance, you may find sites calling a Golden Sex Link a Golden Comet or Bovine Brown. Does that mean these are all the same chicken? Although Golden Comet and Golden Sex Link refer to the same variety of hybrid chicken, they are not always the same. Hybrids are not true breeds, and so Comets and Sex Links come from a variety of backgrounds and descend from similar, albeit different, breeds.
Both Golden Sex Links and Golden Comets come from a cross between Rhode Island Reds, Rhode Island Whites, Delawares, Leghorns, and other breeds, like the Wyandotte (though that may produce a Cinnamon Queen).
Most often, the Golden Sex Link is a cross between Rhode Island Red and Rhode Island White, while a Golden Comet is a cross between a Rhode Island Red and White Leghorn.
What do Golden Sex Link Chicks Look Like?
One of the unique features of Golden Sex Link chicks is that males and females can be easily distinguished by their feather color at hatch. Male chicks typically have a lighter colored down than females, with a softer, almost white, spot on the top of their heads. Female chicks have a darker, more uniform buff color and lack the white spot on the top of their head.
As they mature, Golden Sex Link chicks will gradually develop their adult feather coloration and other physical characteristics, such as their comb and wattles, which will begin to grow and change in size and color.
Up to that point, you should have little issue sexing your Golden Sex Link chicks.
Physical Characteristics of the Golden Sex Link
Since the Golden Sex Link is a hybrid chicken, there is no American Poultry Association (APA) breed standard to consider. That being said, most Golden Sex Links look very similar to one another once they have matured.
The Golden Sex Link chicken is a medium-sized breed that typically weighs between 5 and 7 pounds (2.3-3.2 kg) and stands about 18-20 inches (45-50 cm) tall. Here are some of their key physical characteristics:
- Feathers: Golden Sex Link chickens have a mix of red and white feathers that create a golden appearance, with the males being slightly darker than the females. The feathers are typically soft and shiny, and the birds have a full tail and well-developed wings.
- Comb and wattles: The breed has a single comb and wattles that are red in color and relatively large in size.
- Eyes and beak: The eyes are typically a reddish-brown color, and the beak is yellow or light brown in color and slightly curved.
- Legs and feet: The legs and feet are yellow and relatively strong, with four toes on each foot.
- Body shape: Golden Sex Link chickens have a relatively compact body shape, with a broad chest and a slightly curved back.
Overall, the Golden Sex Link is a beautiful breed of chicken with striking feather patterns and a well-proportioned body shape. You will love watching them roam the chicken run. Watch this video and see for yourself:
Temperament and Personality of the Golden Sex Link
Do you love calm chickens? Then you are going to love the Golden Sex Link. These hybrid chickens are known for being incredibly docile and friendly towards people. They tend to be calm and easy to handle, making them a great choice for backyard chicken keepers and families with children. They are also social birds and enjoy being around other chickens.
For those in urban areas, these chickens are quiet enough that your neighbors won’t notice. Just make sure they are getting plenty of exercise! They tend to be more mouthy when uncomfortable or intimidated.
In addition to being friendly, Golden Sex Link chickens are intelligent and inquisitive. They enjoy wandering around the yard, exploring their environment. They learn quickly and can adapt to new situations well. As such, you can anticipate that your Golden Sex Links are going to want to roam rather than being trapped inside a small chicken run.
However, it’s important to note that even if a Golden Sex Link chicken has good instincts for free-ranging, it’s still important to provide a safe and secure environment for them. This can include providing adequate fencing to keep predators out, as well as shelter to protect them from the elements.
Due to their large size yet docile nature, they are not much for bullying others, though they may end up targeted by more aggressive hens in larger flocks.
Golden Sex Link’s Egg Laying and Broodiness
One of the reasons the Golden Sex Link chicken is so popular among backyard chicken keepers is their high egg output. Generally, the breed will begin laying eggs around 12-18 weeks old, depending on the climate and genetic background. If your Golden Sex Link hens start laying around 12 weeks old, do not let them stay in the nesting box, as this could disrupt their growth and hamper egg production during maturity.
Once matured, Golden Sex Links will produce an egg a day, though this does not happen all the time. You will need to provide adequate nutrition to ensure your hens do not tire themselves out. Expect around 285-320 eggs per year. These chickens will also lay eggs throughout the winter, as the cold does not bother them much.
Another reason these hens are popular is because they do not go broody very often. They will lay eggs regardless. Unfortunately, having hens that do not go broody can also impact how many chicks you have running around. If you wish to hatch eggs from a Golden Sex Link, you are either going to need another hen to adopt them or an incubator. Keep in mind that the chicks that hatch from Golden Sex Link eggs are not Golden Sex Link themselves.
Health Issues and Concerns
Golden Sex Link chickens have a lifespan between 4-5 years, which falls between the average lifespan of Rhode Island Reds and Whites. With proper care, your Golden Sex Link chickens may live a little longer, though their egg production will taper off after their second year, regardless of their care. Although Golden Sex Links are resilient and adapt well to cold and hot temperatures, they can get frostbite or overheated.
Furthermore, you must watch out for common health concerns that impact all breeds. One of the most common health issues that chickens can face is parasites such as lice or mites, which can cause irritation and discomfort for the birds. Regular monitoring and treatment for parasites can help prevent this issue.
Another common health issue for chickens is respiratory infections, which can be caused by poor ventilation or exposure to cold or damp conditions. Good sanitation and ventilation practices, as well as keeping the birds dry and warm, can help prevent respiratory infections. Other potential health issues that can affect Golden Sex Link chickens include egg binding (when an egg gets stuck in the hen’s reproductive tract), and impacted crop (when the crop becomes blocked with food).
Golden Sex Link Care Guide
Now that you know more about Golden Sex Link, here are some care tips to ensure that your flock thrives:
- Housing: As a general rule, it is recommended to provide at least 4 square feet of indoor space per bird in the coop, and at least 8-10 square feet of outdoor space per bird in the run or yard. However, more space is always better if possible.
- Food and water: Like all chickens, Golden Sex Links are omnivores and require plenty of protein and minerals to maintain their egg production and health. Make sure you also provide them with clean, fresh water throughout the day.
- Socialization: Golden Sex Link chickens are social animals and thrive in a group environment. Keep them in a flock of at least two or three birds and provide opportunities for social interaction.
- Health: Regularly check the birds for signs of illness or injury, such as lethargy, loss of appetite, or abnormal behavior. Consult a veterinarian if you notice any health issues.
Final Thoughts on the Golden Sex Link Chicken Breed
Overall, the Golden Sex Link is a popular choice for backyard chicken keeping and small-scale egg production due to its high egg-laying ability, hardiness, and friendly temperament. Being that these chickens are popular, you will have no trouble finding a local breeder to supply you with several. Be sure to keep this care guide on hand, so you can raise happy, healthy chickens!
Valerie has been content writing since 2016 for websites and companies all around the world. A traveler, dancer, martial artist, Valerie loves gathering experiences and wisdom. Her travels have taken her to over 20 countries, and she hopes to see more of the world soon.