American Bresse

The Ideal Homestead Chicken Breed

Are you looking for a dual-purpose, strong foraging, fast growing chicken breed to keep? American Bresse may be a good choice. Originating from France over 500 years ago, American Bresse are gaining popularity across small farms and homesteads, and for good reason. These birds deliver a hefty carcass of flavorful meat, and lay baskets-full of large, tinted eggs. Not to mention they have a strong foraging instinct and respond well to limited feed. What more can you ask in a dual-purpose breed? To learn more about this special breed, visit ambresse.com

Starting in Spring 2023, Humblebee Farms will be offering hatching eggs, day-old chicks, and very limited amounts of pullets and cockerels for sale. Our breeding program is focused on developing a bird that is naturally disease resistant, strong foragers, and gentle dispositions.

Two Options

We currently have two groups we are working with. The first group was hatched here on the farm and came from a Texas breeder with two lines. Some quality hens came from this group, as well as a very large, very gentle rooster. However, there is a visual flaw with some of the chickens from this group. Some of them – including the rooster, have lightly feathered legs. This is either due to a genetic “defect” that doesn’t align with the Bresse standard, or evidence that a Maran made it into the wood pile some time ago. Everything else, including the signature steel-blue legs, are in conformance. We are calling this group “Production Bresse”.

So far, this group of chickens have been healthy, extremely fast growing, and shown strong foraging skills. Additionally, the pullets started to lay eggs at an outstandingly early 16 weeks! If you are a homesteader looking for the ideal meat and egg bird and you are not looking for 100% appearance conformance, this would be a good choice for you!

The other group we have is direct from GreenFire Farms. This group does not have any obvious appearance flaws, but we have experienced more natural loss from this group. We selected one cockerel and two pullets for breeding. This group is still young and their chicks be available later in the spring/ summer of 2023. If you are looking for American Bresse that align highly with the breed standard or plan to start your own breeding program, this is the right group for you. This group will be called “Exhibition Bresse”.

Over time, our breeding program will focus on creating naturally healthy, disease resistant, strong foragers with sweet dispositions and prolific eggs.

Our Approach to Chicken Keeping

All of our pullets and cockerels start in a brooder in our home. Not kept in a shed or shut up in the barn. Why do we think this is important? Frequent handling ensures our chickens are well socialized. As a result, we can bend down and pick up many of our hens anytime. Even our rooster will come right up to you for a visit. Friendly chickens make chicken keeping easier. We can easily do wellness checks and perform any needed care like the occasional check for mites and bumblefoot. It’s also just so much more enjoyable to have friendly chickens in the yard!

Besides handling our chicks from day one, we do the following to maintain health and vigor:

  • Start with organic feed from day 1.
  • Supplement feed with kelp powder, brewers yeast, probiotics, and garlic powder.
  • Supplement water with naturally antibacterial oregano oil.
  • When we do suspect illness or parasites, treat with chlorine dioxide.
  • After 2 months, transition chicks from dry feed to fermented and restrict feeding to twice a day
  • After 6 months, transition young chickens to feeding once a day
  • Get chicks outside in tractors as soon as possible, weather permitting.
  • Free-range all chickens during the day with at least 100 square feet of space per chicken.

We do not vaccinate our chicks or treat with traditional antibiotics or deworming agents. Remember, the goal is naturally healthy chickens.

Ordering

If you are interested in our hatching eggs, chicks, or young chickens, please fill out our order form to be added to our waiting list for spring 2023 availability. Depending on weather, we plan to first start offering hatching eggs in February and chicks in March for local pickup. Currently we are shipping hatching eggs only for a shipping fee of $25. Questions? Please use the contact form anytime!

Pricing

We are a small operation. And fell in love with the American Bresse because of its utility as a true dual purpose breed and heritage as a free-roaming chicken. We raise all our breed stock on quality, organic feed and the bugs they collect free-ranging every day. We only select mamas based on the traits outlined above and never breed a chicken that has ever been sick. With this in mind, we can not and will not compete with the large-scale hatcheries or local big-box store with a tub-full of chicks. From time to time we will review our pricing as we scale.

For pullets and cockerels we will have a very limited quantity available. Pricing for them starts at 6 weeks old. For each additional week of age $5 more will be added to the price. So for an 8 week old pullet it will be $45 per chicken for example.

Production Bresse – Hatching Eggs

Production Bresse – Chicks

Production Bresse – Pullets (6+ weeks)

Production Bresse – Cockerel (6+ weeks)

Exhibition Bresse – Hatching Eggs

Exhibition Bresse – Chicks

$5 each/ $50 per dozen

$15 each/ $150 dozen

$35+ each

$25+ each

$5 each/ $50 dozen

$15 each/ $150 dozen