Sapphire Gem Chicken – Breed Profile & Facts
The Sapphire Gem chickens are increasingly gaining popularity worldwide, thanks to their mesmerizing appearance. Apart from their good looks, these chickens are easy to maintain. They also have terrific egg production capabilities.
These chickens have an easygoing temperament, making them excellent for beginner chicken raisers. Sapphire Gem chickens have a striking appearance due to their lavender or blue feathers.
What is a Sapphire Gem Chicken?
Sapphire Gem chickens are a new breed from crossbreeding Barred Plymouth Rock and Plymouth Rock chickens. These chickens have a striking and unique appearance. While much isn’t clear about these chickens, existing information shows that they originated from the Czech Republic.
Some chicken keepers refer to Sapphire Gem chickens as Sapphire Blue Plymouth Rocks or Blue Sapphire Plymouth Rocks because they are a crossbreed of Barred Plymouth Rocks and Blue Plymouth Rocks.
Sapphire Gem Chicken Characteristics
Both Sapphire Gem males and females have lavender or blue feathers. Nonetheless, roosters and hens from this breed have relatively different appearances. For instance, roosters have white dots on their heads and blue feathers.
Some roosters from this breed also have white dots on their wings. Sapphire Gem females have striking blue feathers with patches of gold or gray feathers along their necks. Sapphire Gem chickens have single combs. Their upright posture makes them quite distinct from most breeds. Some of these chickens have feathers that seem less blue than lavender.
– Size & Weight
Sapphire Gem chickens are medium-sized birds. Hens usually weigh between five and six pounds, while roosters weigh between six and seven pounds.
Sapphire Gem chickens are some of the perfect chicken breeds for beginners because of their easygoing and friendly temperaments. These chickens are highly adaptable, enabling them to blend well with multiple types of environments.
Sapphire Gem chickens are docile and calm. They are well-behaved around their owners and kids. Some people keep these chickens as pets because the birds handle cuddling perfectly well. These chickens have some of the best temperaments compared with most breeds.
Because of their cool character, these chickens can get along with other animals. Therefore, Sapphire Gems can live with other species in one flock. Nonetheless, larger chicken breeds scare these birds because they mistake them for predators.
Sapphire Gems have an impressive lifespan because these birds can live for five to ten years. With proper care, though, these chickens can live beyond ten years.
Nonetheless, your Sapphire Gems may fail to live to the average lifespan if they are vulnerable to predation or if there are disease outbreaks that make them fatally ill.
– Egg Production
Sapphire Gems are some of the best hybrid chickens to keep for egg production. These chickens usually lay year-round. They can also lay between four and six eggs weekly, translating to an average of between 280 and 300 brown eggs per year.
Hens aren’t broody, so beginner chicken keepers can keep them for egg production without experiencing any complications. Like other breeds, hens will produce most eggs in the first couple of their laying years. Sapphire Gem hens will start laying fewer eggs as they age.
– Meat Production
Although some people keep Sapphire Gem chickens for meat, these birds aren’t meat producers. Breeders breed these chickens as egg layers. Thus, using the birds for meat will rob you of several brown eggs.
Roosters are suitable for meat production, although they aren’t as big as roosters from other breeds. Furthermore, roosters take several weeks to mature, so keeping too many roosters for meat production can be disappointing in the long run.
Sapphire Gem Chicken Care
Sapphire Gems are some of the best layers you can keep in your backyard or a large poultry facility, especially if you want to keep these chickens for egg production. You must, however, ensure your Sapphire Gem chickens have the best care to ensure the birds thrive as excellent egg producers.
These are some of the most important things to think about the Sapphire chicken breed, particularly if you are rearing this breed for egg production.
– Feeding & Nutrition
Your Sapphire chickens should get proper nutrition at every stage of their development. Sapphire baby chicks, for instance, need protein to keep their bodies growing. That’s why you should start your chicks with a protein-rich feed, containing between 18% and 24% protein. You can keep decreasing the protein amount in the feed as the baby chicks continue growing.
As the baby chickens continue aging, you should feed the young hens in your flock with a feed with a lesser protein concentration. Nonetheless, the feed should contain enough protein to keep the hens laying, particularly in the colder months when all chickens rarely lay due to the freezing temperatures. Otherwise, protein is essential for Sapphire Gem chickens regardless of their age.
Your outdoor Sapphire chickens will get most of their protein requirements from the insects they pick out there because they will have plenty of insects and bugs to catch out there as they are foraging outside. Plus, outdoor Sapphire chickens have access to a wide range of seeds, including grass seeds, which have plenty of protein.
You will have to provide your indoor Sapphire chickens with protein-rich items to meet their dietary needs. Some excellent food items to give your chickens if you want to help the birds meet their nutritional needs include mealworms, fishmeal, and raw or cooked egg yolks. The more protein your birds will have, the more they will grow fast, and the more they will lay larger and more brown eggs.
Sapphire Gems chickens also need vitamins to boost their immune system and to ensure the birds can fight off the many poultry diseases. That’s why you must feed these chickens enough fruits and vegetables.
Your chickens won’t have enough vitamins if they don’t consume enough crucial vitamins like vitamins C, A, and D. The only way to ensure your birds get enough vitamins is by giving them a sufficient amount of vegetables, including cabbages, lettuce, and broccoli.
These chickens also need substantial amounts of fruits, including melons, papaws, and grapes. These fruits help give Sapphire chickens enough vitamin C to help them fight off some serious poultry diseases.
Some of the poultry diseases your chickens can combat due to the availability of enough vitamin C in their body include coccidiosis and fowl cholera.
While Sapphire chickens are cold-resistant birds, they also need a diet to help retain their body warmth during colder days. For instance, these chickens need a variety of carb-rich foods in colder months when the birds are desperately struggling to keep warm.
Some excellent carbs-rich foods for your Sapphire Gem chickens during cold months include cracked wheat, corn, and rice. It’s advisable to give these carbs-rich foods to your chickens in moderation because giving them too much of such foods can increase their likelihood of becoming obese in the long term.
Giving them fresh water is, therefore, a great way to ensure the chickens have plenty of fluids in their bodies, thus helping the birds beat dehydration and avoid constipation as they strive to digest the food they eat daily.
Your Sapphire chickens won’t thrive if they don’t get sufficient daily food intake. Thus, ensure the chickens eat not less than twice a day. Keep changing the feed and the water daily to ensure the feed doesn’t get stale, thus attracting bacteria that will harm your Sapphire Gem chickens.
Furthermore, keep changing the water because leaving water in your chickens’ water containers will attract some harmful bacteria that will expose the birds to severe bacterial diseases, including Salmonella.
Sapphire chickens don’t have lots of housing requirements like other chickens. These chickens can thrive in a housing setup that gives them no less than four square feet.
Nevertheless, Sapphire chickens don’t thrive in small spaces, so you should provide the birds with enough living space. Although these chickens will do well in confinement, they need some free-range time because they are excellent foragers.
However, these chickens must have somewhere to roost at night because they can’t spend the night outside because of cold and predators. You should have a run if you are keeping your Sapphire Gem chickens indoors, yet you want to give some time to catch some fresh air.
Although these chickens can withstand a wide range of temperatures, the biggest concern for these chickens in winter is precisely frostbite. You must provide them with a shelter that keeps them warm in the winter and protects them from the snow leading to frostbites.
You can also get some heating lamps and put them in the coop during winter when the chickens are vulnerable to cold. Also, you can add soft and warm bedding in the coop on colder days to ensure your Sapphire Gem chickens don’t succumb to the cold.
Ensure the coop has many ways to help your Sapphire Gem chickens cool off in the summer months. Give your Sapphire Gem chickens some cold treats during the summer months to allow them to cool off or withstand hot temperatures.
Some of the finest cold snacks to give your Sapphire Gem chickens during hot winter days include frozen fruits and vegetables. Besides keeping your Sapphire Gem chickens cold in the summer, you should also keep their coop well-ventilated by providing lots of shades, particularly in their run.
The coop should provide your Sapphire chickens with protection from all potential predators. Sapphire chickens are vulnerable to predation like other chickens.
Because these chickens are timid, less noisy, and lesser aggressive than other chickens, they are at risk of notorious predators, including dogs, raccoons, and cats. Because Sapphire chickens have a heavy feathering, these birds need to live in a clean coop free of droppings and dust.
– Health Problems
Many people consider Sapphire Gems as hardy birdy birds. Therefore, their concern while keeping these chickens is the same as those of chicken keepers who raise other chicken breeds. Parasites are the most serious health problem for these chickens because they are susceptible to parasites and internal worms. Some of the common parasites in these chickens are mites and lice.
Sapphire Gem chickens are also vulnerable to other diseases only treatable through a vet’s intervention. Some deadly diseases affecting Sapphire Gem chickens include fowl cholera, coccidiosis, and Avian cholera.
You can prevent your chickens from these diseases by calling a vet to immunize the birds. Or, you can implement some preventive measures to ensure your Sapphire Gem chickens don’t contract these diseases.
How Much Does Sapphire Gem Chicken Cost?
Sapphire Gem baby chicks cost between $3 and $5. The price can be lower for farmers purchasing baby chicks from this breed in large amounts. Young and adult roosters cost between $10 and $15, while hens cost below $20.
Are Sapphire Gem Chickens Good for Beginners?
Yes, Sapphire Gem chickens are extremely good for beginners because these chickens are pretty easy to take care of. They are also hardy and don’t succumb to most diseases that affect chickens.
Are Sapphire Gem Chickens Hardy?
Yes, Sapphire chickens are hardy and can withstand cold, unlike most breeds. These chickens also don’t fall ill as other species do.
Can Sapphire Gem Chicken Fly?
No, Sapphire chickens aren’t flighty and will barely fly away from your yard. They are obedient and friendly, and they will never think of flying away from your home unless a predator or someone chases them from your premises.
Tips on Keeping Sapphire Gem Chickens
Keeping Sapphire chickens is quite easy, provided you give these birds a great living environment. These tips here will help you successfully raise Sapphire Gem chickens, either on a large scale or as a homesteader.
- Provide your Sapphire Gem chickens with the entertainment they need to keep them happy.
- Give your Sapphire Gem chickens nutritious foods
- Protect the Sapphire Gem chickens from predators
- Keep your chickens in a clean environment
- Vaccinate your Sapphire Gem chickens from multiple chicken diseases
Sapphire Gem chickens are some of the most interesting hybrid chickens to rear. They are hardy and have an easygoing personality. These chickens adapt well to multiple living conditions, and that’s why they are a favorite breed for many chicken keepers.