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Broiler Chicken Vs Layer Chicken: What’s The Difference?

If you are looking to find the best type of chicken, it’s important to know the difference between broiler chickens and layer hens.

There are pros and cons when choosing what type of poultry will work best for your family’s needs, and we will figure it out in this article.

What are broiler chickens?

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Broiler chickens are any breed of chicken that is bred and raised for meat production.

They are typically slaughtered at six to seven weeks old because broiler chickens grow fast, making them more economical to raise.

Broiler chickens can be raised on a farm or free range with access to the outdoors for a certain amount of time per day.

They can also be fed with natural and organic food like insects, worms, seeds, peas, vegetables, and grain, or raised with industrial feed that might contain chemicals and toxins.

The way the chickens are raised as well as their diets will directly affect the flavor and texture of the chicken meat.

What are layer chickens?

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Layer chickens are poultry that is bred to produce eggs rather than for their meat production, that’s why they are called “layers.” Layer hens can lay eggs all year round while broilers only do so in their laying seasons, like several months in a year.

Layer chickens are able to lay 260 to 300 eggs per year.

The size of their eggs and the color of eggshells varies between different breeds of chicken.

Layer chickens can be slaughtered for meat too, but their meat is often less succulent and tasty than their broiler counterparts.

A hen typically needs about 18 weeks from her birthday until she can lay her very first egg.

Layer chickens also tend to live longer than broiler chickens, until she starts laying fewer eggs or stop laying, normally at the age of seven.

When raising layer chickens, you can have fresh eggs from your backyard every single day and even bring them to sell on the market when there are a lot of eggs in your house.

What are the differences between broiler chickens vs layer chickens?

Broiler chickens and layer chickens are raised for different purposes.

The comparison table below will give you a closer look at how broiler chicken differs from their layer counterparts:

 Broiler chickensLayer chickens
PurposesFor meat productionFor egg production
Growth rateFasterSlower
SizeLarger, meatierSmaller, thinner
Life spanShorter Broiler chickens are often slaughtered at six to seven weeks oldLonger Can live up to eight to 10 years Start laying fewer eggs at the age of six and seven
PriceUsually lowerHigher

What are the similarities between layer chickens vs broiler chickens?

Broiler chickens and layer chickens are basically just chickens no matter if they are raised for different purposes.

Therefore, there are some similarities between layer chickens and broiler chickens, as listed below:

1. Broiler chickens can lay eggs and layer chickens can be slaughtered for meat

Broiler chickens, specifically broiler hens, can lay eggs like layer chickens.

However, since they are bred for meat production, they lay eggs with lower ​​productivity, like a couple of months per year, then have a rest, and keep laying after that.

Layer chickens are edible as well.

They can be slaughtered for meat production, however, the taste might be less tasty and succulent compared to broiler chickens.

In general, these two types of chicken can be raised for multiple purposes and interchangeably.

However, each type will show its superiority in a particular field.

2. Layer chickens and broiler chickens can be easily bought from any poultry farm supplier

It will be more economical to buy layer chickens or broiler chickens when they are still baby chicks and you can start raising them on your own.

Both types of chicken can be found in any poultry farm that supplies chicken breeds for different purposes.

Which one is better?

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With all of the information you know now from our article, it should be easier to choose between broiler chickens and layer hens.

They are actually just chickens that are bred for different specific purposes, one for laying eggs and one for meat production.

But they can be used interchangeably sometimes.

So before starting your own farming, make sure what you want to invest between broiler chickens or layer chickens to have the wisest choice when buying these chicks.

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