Let us talk about the world-famous Jersey Giant that isn’t your typical chicken. They are the world’s largest chicken breeds! And, they stand out for more reasons than just their size.

They can thrive on homesteads emphasizing slow meals because of their kind dispositions and adept foraging skills. This enormous bird is undoubtedly inappropriate for someone with a small property.

This magnificent bird is unlikely to be forgotten once seen since its size leaves an impression. But dont be frightened by size; they are, in fact, gentle giants.

The farming of Jersey Giant Chickens has gained enormous popularity around the world. This dual purpose chicken is raised for eggs and meat and is reported to generate high-quality, nutritious products.

SpeciesG. domesticus
ABASingle combed, clean legged
PCGBHeavy, rare soft feathered

Table of Contents

History of Jersey Giant

The Jersey Giant is a domestic chicken from the American lands, which emerged in the late nineteenth century, between 1870 and 1890, in Burlington County, New Jersey, USA.

Some refer to it as a heritage chicken breed since it was created as a dual-purpose and meat bird. 

It was formerly known as The Black Giants after the brothers who produced them, John and Thomas Black.

The name was later modified to reflect their home state of New Jersey, earning them the nickname Jersey Giant. So how exactly were they produced? 

The Black brothers were attempting to create a new variety of chicken that would substitute turkey, which was the meat industry’s primary source of protein at the time.

Even though they were unsuccessful, they got close to their vision by crossing the Black Javas, Black Langshans, and Dark Brahmas to create the Jersey Giant.

Physical Description of Jersey Gaint

Jersey giant compared to NewHampshire red chicken

Each color variety has a distinct look. The black Jersey Giants have beautiful black plumage, as the name implies. Their legs are likewise dark in color. In the light, their feathers seem green or purple, similar to an oil drop but far more beautiful.

White Jersey Giants have cream-colored limbs that compliment the white feathers. The blue plumage and black shanks of the blue Jersey Giant place it in the center of the black and white color scale. 

Jersey Giants, irrespective of coloration, have yellow skin, red combs and wattles, and dark brown eyes. Depending on the shading of their plumage, their snouts are either black or yellow.

The physique of both roosters and hens is solid and sleek. The feathers of these splendid birds are close to the body, giving them a neat, clean-cut look.

Jersey Giants have no plumage on their legs, and their tail feathers are shorter than other breeds, even in roosters. All varieties of these heritage breeds have yellow soles on their feet.

What habitat suits the largest chicken breed?

Your cherished largest chicken breed will also require a comfortable resting place and sleeping on your property.

This bird may be a magnificent complement to your backyard if kept in proper living circumstances. Here are some pointers for designing the finest coop:

Space and feeding: These giant chickens have a voracious appetite, so make sure they have plenty of food and clean water. Because they are bigger, they may demand more room in the coop than the typical.

Predator issues: The great size of this bird does not protect it from predators. Instead, it makes them a bigger target. Secure your coop with extra chicken wire or covers.

Sturdy and clean: For these larger chicken breeds such as these, you must design your coop using robust supplies. To prevent sickness from spreading among your hens, keep the coop spotless and regularly pick up excrement.

Behavior And Temperament

Black jersey Giant carried by women

Jersey Giant chickens are a pleasant, peaceful, and gentle chicken species. They are tough, cold tolerant, and rarely hostile. This docile breed gets along nicely with different types of birds and animals. 

They are not flighty, but they do need a lot of room. As a result, extremely high borders are not required to keep them contained. Hens may get broody and are renowned for being fiercely protective moms.

These hens tend to blend in with existing flocks without difficulty. They are not violent and do not strike at pets or children. In fact, despite their imposing size, they are one of the least violent chicken breeds available.

As a result, many chicken enthusiasts believe that Jersey Giants are the ideal breed to pair with more aggressive breeds, as other chickens are typically restrained by their size.

Food Habits of Jersey Giant

Jersey Giants aren’t usually picky eaters. Once they are entirely feathered, you might need to encourage them to gain weight. They will consume more nourishment than smaller hens to mature and keep their size.

Allow unrestricted access to manufactured, age-appropriate diet, grassland access, and garden leftovers to support optimal muscular growth.

When rearing Jersey Giants for meat, high-protein treats like insects can also aid muscle development.

The majority of the weight gain will occur after six months of age. Boost their food intake as needed to keep up with the weight increase.

Also, remember that these giants might continue to develop slowly for several years before reaching their peak weight potential.

How long does the largest chicken breed live?

Male and female jersey giants

A Jersey Giant chicken has a six-year lifetime on average. They are a slow-growing breed that requires a longer time to reach adulthood. Large-sized birds are thought to have a shorter life expectancy than small-sized birds. 

They have a maximum life expectancy of 6 years if properly maintained and nourished.

This is a brief stage; farmers butcher them as soon as they attain full size. After which, they swiftly recoup the cost of their purchase and care.

Reproduction in Jersey Giant

Description About egg laying in jersey giants

Jersey Giants produce a respectable number of large eggs. They may lay up to 200 eggs yearly, with an average of four or two eggs per week. The eggs are large and pale brown. Unfortunately, the Jersey Giants are not famed for being broody.  

The birds, though, aren’t the finest setters. The heavy breeds are too giant and more likely to break the eggs. Pullets start laying approximately six months of age.

These chickens are well behind many other egg-laying chicken species. However, the wait is worth it!

However, if you intend to hatch the eggs, you should wait slightly longer than the standard 21 days for baby chicks.

This is one of the bases why Jersey Giant eggs should be wholly isolated from regular eggs in an incubator.

And, it is not unusual for the eggs to need an extra day or two to incubate, so be patient.

Jersey Giants are notorious for laying all year. They are also among the greatest hens for producing in cold weather.

The chickens are excellent layers, particularly during the winter, laying between 160 and 200 extra-large brown eggs yearly. When others cease producing eggs during the winter season, these will continue.

Health Issues in Jersey Giant

The Jersey Giant chicken was developed to be both huge and sturdy. As a result, Jersey giants are thought to be robust birds resistant to numerous bacterial diseases.

Leg injuries are one of the only significant health hazards that Jersey giant chickens may suffer.

These injuries are possible if the bird flies or leaps from a great height. The landing might hurt a bird due to its weight. Moving the coops closer to the ground can help to lessen the likelihood of such accidents.

Jersey Giant chickens require a lot of areas to wander because of their size. Often, enabling these friendly birds to move freely is the best solution.

If free-range chickens are not possible, they should be given at least eight square feet of area per bird. In smaller spaces, four square feet of room is plenty.

Fun facts on the largest chicken breed

Jersey Giant in the backyard
  • Chocolate and beans are the two primary foodstuffs that Jersey Giant chickens should avoid eating. The phytohemagglutinin found in beans can be lethal, while theobromine found in chocolate can induce cardiac issues.
  • Jersey chicks should be provided minerals and vitamins constantly for bone density since their size makes them prone to muscular and bone frailty.
  • Because they have thick feathers, Jersey Giant chickens are not recommended for anybody who lives in a hot area.
  • The Jersey Giant is not for you if you want a bird that matures quickly. However, if you’re ready to spend more on feed, the final meat will be well worth the price.

Quick Summary table

Breed NameJersey Giant
Place of OriginNew Jersey
UsesDual Purpose (Meat and Eggs)
Rooster (Male) Size13 to 15 pounds
Hen (Female) SizeAround 11 pounds
ColourBlack, Blue, White
Lifespan6 to 7 years
Climate ToleranceExcellent, All Climates, Cold Hardy
Care LevelEasy
Egg Production2-4 per week

Commonly Asked Questions

When do Jersey Giants fully mature?

Jersey Giants achieve full size at 8 to 9 months, a few months later than other breeds. Producers will frequently utilize them for meat around this time, but you can also maintain them as exceptional egg-laying birds.

Is it possible for Jersey Chicken to gain weight and become obese?

If you don’t pay close attention to their nutrition, you may sometimes overfeed them. Feeding your hens should be done with extreme caution as they are prone to becoming overweight.

How do you know whether a Jersey Chick is male or female?

Males are often bigger and taller than females. The mature roosters of this largest breed stand at more than 2 feet tall.

How much do white jersey giants weigh?

White birds, Jersey giants, weigh up to 15 lbs, 5 pound heavier than Bramha chicken.

Are black jersey giant cold hardy?

No, the black variety of jersey chickens is not aggressive at all. In fact, none of these heavy birds have harmed people. However, you need a robust chicken coop due to its large body size.

What color eggs do blue jersey giants lay?

The eggs of blue jersey giants are brown in color. The blue variety that takes more than 6 months to mature and are excellent winter layers. 

The Jersey Giant bird has become a perfect pet for many small poultry growers. It is quiet and gentle and enjoys being held.

If you have enough area for the chickens to roam and don’t mind their large size, this Jersey Giant might be an excellent addition to your outdoor flock.

So, are you interested in getting a few of these for yourselves? If you want to know which breed will be best for your home, consider going through our article on the best chicken breeds for your backyard.

(Last Updated on August 9, 2022 by Sadrish Dabadi)

Shradha Bhatta holds a Bachelors’s Degree in Social Work along with a Post-graduate degree in Project Management from Georgian College in Canada. Shradha enjoys writing on various topics and takes pleasure in discovering new ideas. Her life’s mission is to make the world a better place for all beings.