Black Australorps

The story of the Black Australorp breed began first in England in the early 1900’s. A man named William Cook from Kent, United Kingdom, created the Orpington chicken. Orpingtons are large, heavy feathered, docile poultry. Orpingtons then were shipped to Australian homesteads in the 1920’s to fill a need for laying birds. The Orpingtins were crossed with other egg production breeds, such as the Leghorn, Rhode Island Red, and Minorca. Thus, the Black Australorp was born, and its namesake is a combination of the words Australia and Orpington.


Black Australorps still exhibit some of the characteristics of their Orpington cousins. They have a gentle temperament and are easily tamed. They make great chickens for children or beginners.

Coming in dark hues, they can be black, white, or blue. Unfortunately, only the black color is recognized in America at this time. The Australorp chicken is a large bird, with roosters averaging between 8-10lbs., and the hens averaging at about 7lbs. They are a slower growing breed, and should mature at around 6 months of age. Since their breeding was created with an emphasis on egg production, and away from meat yield, Australorps make better layers than friers. They actually make wonderful pets and friends! If you happen to have treats, you’ll soon have a flock full of Australorp friends!

When it comes to care, the Black Australorp is an easy keeper. Being such large birds decreases their ability to fly, so with Australorps, you won’t need a tall fence. They are more likely to come home to the coop each night than flightier breeds. Excelling at free ranging, a well fed, happy Black Australorp hen can lay up to 300 large cream colored eggs per year! They are unlikely to become broody, which is a positive if you are relying on eggs for breakfast year-round! A broody hen will stop laying once she gets her clutch of eggs to a good size. She will not be content until she hatches some babies!(-and that is a whole story for another time!) A hen less likely to become broody keeps laying unfailingly until the yearly molt.


The Black Australorp may have a funny name, but now you know why and just how great these chooks are! Bold, beautiful, and a bombastic layer, add a few to your flock this year!