Shaver chickens: description, care and feeding

Nowadays it is quite popular to keep chickens in a private household. These birds, thanks to the hard work of breeders, have become unpretentious to the conditions of detention and feeding. With a minimum of effort and cost, you can always get fresh eggs and organic meat. If you decide to have chickens in your yard, then give preference to egg breeds. Among them, the Scheiner breed deserves the most attention. Why exactly she, we will tell further.

Breed characteristics

The breed was born thanks to the efforts of breeders from Holland. They were required to breed unpretentious animals with high rates of productivity. The task was not an easy one, but it was still possible to solve it.

A few decades after the start of work, at sunset of the 20th century, the first generation of the magnificent hybrid, called Shaver, appeared. Breeders were able to obtain from birds and a good instinct for hatchery, in addition to the ordered characteristics.

The hybrid has three subspecies, each of which differs from the other in only one color: Shaver brown (brown), Shaver black (black), Shaver white (white). Other external data and other characteristics are similar.

Did you know? Our ancestors, when the rooster began to sing, could determine what the weather would be like the next day. If he gave a voice as soon as the sun went down, it means that the weather will change. Sang after 21:00 - we should expect rain. Crowed after 22:00 - the day will be clear.

True, some experts argue that nevertheless black hens are larger than their relatives, brown ones are a bit smaller, and white ones are the least. Also, in some cases, it was noted that black and brown bring a little more eggs per year than white. But this difference is quite insignificant.

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In appearance, Shaver chickens are classic representatives of the egg direction: small, with a rounded body, a curved neck and a light skeleton.

Headsmall, neat, smoothly passing to the neck
Crestleaf-shaped, pronounced, richly red in color, in females leans on its side, in males it stands flat
Catkinsmedium, deep red, white lobes
Beakstrong yellow
Neckmiddle length
Backslightly elongated, concave in the middle
Chestdense, round, muscular (in roosters)
Stomachvoluminous, well expressed in females
Wingstightly pressed to the body
Tailsmall, slightly erect in females, erect in males and has longer feathers
Pawsbald, medium length, strong, yellow in young animals, pale in adults, may be blue
Plumage and colorthe plumage is dense, the color depends on the subspecies (browns may have light feathers on the tail and wings)


The nature of the birds is peaceful, calm. It is not typical for them to come into conflict with relatives, which allows them to be kept with birds of the same temperament. But due to the fact that the breed of the egg direction, Shayners are very mobile and restless, they make early attempts to fly, so you need to take care of the high fence on the walking yard.

Important! The wings are not cut, as this can cause psychological trauma to the animal.

Advantages and disadvantages of the breed

  • The advantages include:
    • high performance;
    • unpretentiousness, frost resistance;
    • good immunity;
    • long period of oviposition;
    • calm disposition;
    • strong eggshell;
    • not picky in food;
    • very high survival rate;
    • minimum number of eggs with marriage;
    • sparingly consume food (eat little, but at the same time, productivity does not decrease).

  • Disadvantages:
    • often laying hens do not want to voluntarily sit on the masonry;
    • if you do not follow the rules of care during molting, cannibalism appears;
    • species must not be crossed, as this negatively affects productivity.

How to keep chickens of this breed

It was previously mentioned that the hybrid is quite unpretentious to the conditions of detention. He was bred so that he would bring many eggs, regardless of the conditions in which they would be kept. Nevertheless, in order not to torment the bird with stressful situations, you need to adhere to certain rules in caring for it.

Necessary conditions

Chickens Shaver can be kept in a chicken coop or cages. The latter option can significantly save space, as well as simplify the care of birds. But he restricts the animal in movement, which can not very well affect its health. The poultry breeder will decide which content option to give preference to, we will tell you what requirements the premises in which the bird is planned to breed should meet.

Chicken coop requirements

When arranging a chicken coop, you need to consider that:

  • the breed, although frost-resistant, does not like drafts;
  • the floor must be dry and covered with straw;
  • the bird rushes well at +5 ... + 7 ° С;
  • humidity is recommended to maintain at around 60–70%;
  • if the winter is frosty, then infrared lamps must be installed above the nests;
  • for the winter you need to cover the floor with warm litter;
  • for chicks, a suitable temperature is +28 ° C (not less);
  • the room must be equipped with ventilation;
  • each layer should have its own nest of about 40 cm in diameter;
  • perched for each individual should be allocated at least 40 cm;
  • so that the hens rush well, it is advisable to make the lighting "warm";
  • in winter, increase the duration of daylight hours with the help of lamps.

Important! Sheiner chickens can walk in the winter on a walking patio until the air temperature drops below -10 ° C.

Walking patio

It is necessary for chickens, as birds need to warm up, breathe fresh air and eat fresh herbs. It is equipped from the south side. The courtyard must meet the following requirements:

  • have a high fence, and best of all, a mesh roof;
  • there will be no superfluous canopy over the courtyard, which will protect the birds from the sun and bad weather;
  • there should not be any foreign objects in the territory about which the bird may get injured;
  • the ground in the courtyard should be covered with grass or hay;
  • in the courtyard there should be feeders and drinking bowls.

Drinking bowls and feeders

When choosing drinkers and feeders, the main thing is to consider that they are:

  • economical (birds often climb into containers with legs and rake their contents out, so it is advisable to equip containers with nets);
  • available for care;
  • durable (under the weight of a bird flying up to the tank, it should not be deformed, preferably drinking bowls and feeders should be well fixed).

Learn how to disinfect in a chicken coop.

As a feeder, you can use any elongated container made of metal or wood. It is important that it is neither deep nor shallow, so that the bird does not have to climb on it to get food.

The length of the tank depends on the livestock of your farm. One individual needs at least 10 cm of feed space. It is better to choose a drinker so that the water does not spill on the floor and is always fresh.

Feeding Adult Chickens

In food, birds of this breed are not picky. But for egg production to be at a high level, a balanced diet should be developed:

  • the basis is better to take combined feeds or nutritious grain mixtures;
  • in addition to use whole and crushed grain;
  • wet mixers should always be prepared with the addition of meat and bone, fish meal, chalk, shellfish;
  • vitamin supplements, yeast, fermented milk products will not interfere.

Read also what are premixes for chickens.

In the warm season, the diet should be varied with fresh herbs and vegetables. In winter, these products are replaced with herbal flour. Also in winter, you need to make sure that food and water are always warm, and the portion is calculated so that nothing remains in the feeder after the meal.

Every day, one individual consumes 100-110 g of feed. This portion must be divided into three receptions. It is desirable to alternate feed. In the morning, it is best to use mixers with flour, herbs and vegetables. Then the egg production will be at a high level.

Shedding and egg laying break

Usually, by autumn, the number of laid eggs gradually decreases, and then egg laying completely stops. No need to be scared and worried about this phenomenon. This is a natural process inherent in birds at the genetic level. So begins the process of molting.

Birds need it to change the feather cover to a warmer one in order to survive the winter. A lot of effort is spent on updating the pen, so egg laying is stopped. During this period, such a thing as cannibalism is often observed (birds begin to peck at each other).

Important! If you are going to change the diet of laying hens, then you should do this gradually.

In order to protect your livestock from death under a relative's beak, you need to make the lighting in the chicken coop muffled and saturate the diet with vitamins and minerals to the maximum (give meat and bone, fish flour, ground charcoal). When the molting is over, the ability to lay eggs will again return to birds, and productivity will increase.

Herd replacement planned

Layers of Shaver breed acquire the ability to lay eggs quite early - at the age of five months. Gradually, the number of laid eggs increases until it reaches its maximum value (at about a year old). Then, also gradually over the course of the year, egg production will fade.

Therefore, by this time, experts recommend taking care of preparing a new herd, so that when the time comes to send laying hens for slaughter, the young growth is already of mature age. True, some sources claim that it is advisable to keep Shayvers for 3-4 years, because egg production remains at a high level.

How to raise chickens

Chickens of this breed are very afraid of low temperatures. Therefore, before the chicks should be born in the chicken coop, you should set the temperature at around +30 ° C. In two weeks, it will be possible to lower it to +28 ° C.

Immediately after birth, the diet of young animals consists of chopped chicken eggs, cereals and crushed greens. Three days after birth, fat-free cottage cheese and yogurt are introduced into their menu. At the age of 14 days, chickens are transferred to mixed feeds.

Did you know? In 1945, an American farmer chopped off his head to his rooster, and after a while he discovered that the feathered one was still alive. This fact interested the farmer, and he decided to conduct an experiment. He fed and looked after the bird, and she was able to live for almost a year, and then she died only because the owner lost the tools necessary for feeding and care.

Chicks drink only warm boiled water. It can mix glucose, vitamins and yeast to maintain immunity. A container with calcined river sand should be placed next to the drinker. It will help to establish digestion.

Young hens are covered with a feather before the males, which allows you to quickly sort the chickens by gender and transfer them to an individual menu.

What diseases may appear

Chick Shaver was bred resistant to disease, therefore, subject to all the rules for care and the implementation of preventive measures, livestock diseases are not terrible. The only ailment that can undermine them and cause significant economic damage is chicken tuberculosis. You can overcome it only with the help of expensive antibiotics (Isoniazid, Rifampicin, Ethambutol).

For two months, a combination of pyrazinamide, isoniazid, streptomycin, rifampicin and ethambutol is used. If after this period of time, the carrier is preserved, then after 3-4 months Rifampicin with Isoniazid is used. In the neglected form, the disease is meaningless to treat. It is more expedient to kill animals.

We recommend that you read about what chicken leg diseases exist and how to treat them.

Shaver - a profitable breed for maintenance on a private compound. Chickens eat a little, bring enough eggs, are easy to care for and maintain, do not get sick. Therefore, everyone who has encountered breeding of this breed speaks of it only positively.

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