The New Hampshire Red chicken is a relatively new breed with origins less than one hundred years old.
It was created from the more well-known Rhode Island Red breed.
New Hampshire Reds are dual-purpose chickens bred primarily for meat production.
The friendly birds mainly come in various shades of red, and their cousin, the Rhode Island Red, is known for being quiet.
But are New Hampshire Red chickens quiet too?
Generally, New Hampshire Red Chickens are not considered a quiet breed and make typical chicken noises. They squawk, chatter, and are quite loud before, during, and after producing an egg. However, this may vary according to each individual bird.
New Hampshire Red chickens are medium-sized birds (not a heavy breed) and may be food aggressive with other chickens.
So it’s important not to mix more timid breeds into the flock.
Keep reading to learn more interesting facts about New Hampshire Red chickens, why chickens make noise, and what breed of chickens are considered quiet.
How Quiet are New Hampshire Red Chickens?
All chickens make a certain amount of noise, producing various sounds they use to communicate with other chickens in their flock.
New Hampshire Red chickens are not generally a quiet breed and do not appear on any lists ranking quiet breeds of chicken.
They are active breeds and excellent foragers, and they like to communicate with their flock while they do so.
Like hens of most chicken breeds, New Hampshire Reds will make a series of squawks and cackling noises before, sometimes during, and after laying an egg.
If you observe a flock of New Hampshire hens, you will notice they regularly chatter as they wander around and are rarely silent.
Many consider the breed not too noisy, particularly if they can forage freely and meet their basic care needs.
Although not known to be quiet, New Hampshire Reds are not considered the noisiest dual-purpose breed.
Why Do New Hampshire Red Chickens Make Noise?
Like their more famous relatives, Rhode Island Reds, chickens make noises for various reasons but mainly to communicate with other members of the flock.
Roosters make quite a bit of noise crowing in the morning hours, and hens will also make noises in the coop when they wake up.
This Dutch breed will also chatter when settling down on their roosts for the night in their coops.
These active birds make low murmurs or chatter to communicate they are content if they are foraging or taking a dust bath.
If a chicken feels threatened or attacked, it will call out an alert to signal danger to the rest of the flock.
People love to hate on chickens for being “dumb,” but this is an intelligent breed with instincts to protect their families.
Mother hens or brooding hens will make quiet clucking and purring noises while sitting on eggs and after the chicks are hatched.
If truly frightened, they may even jump and fly away (at least for a while).
Further Reading: Do New Hampshire Red Chickens Fly?
What Kind of Chickens Don’t Make Noise?
While some breeds are quieter than others, all chickens make some type of noise.
Roosters make the most noise with their crowing, which starts at daylight and, for some breeds, continues throughout the day.
While quieter than roosters, some hens can still be pretty noisy when laying an egg.
At night, once they are roasting in their coops, chickens generally do not make any noise and are very quiet.
If noise is a concern in your neighborhood, it’s probably a good idea not to keep a rooster since they are much noisier than hens.
Several other types might work for you if you are looking for a quieter type of chicken.
What Are The Quietest Chicken Breeds?
All chickens make a certain amount of noise, but some specific birds are considered quiet.
Here is a list of breeds consistently ranked as quiet chickens:
- Buff Orpington
- Barred Rock
- Plymouth Rock
- Rhode Island Red
- Speckled Sussex
Poultry breeders who live in an urban setting and have neighbors nearby might want to consider it since they are less noisy.
Even though these species are considered quieter, roosters of any species will crow and should be avoided if noise is a concern.
Can You Train a New Hampshire Red To Be Quiet?
Although training a chicken to be quiet will unlikely work, there are steps to promote quieter behavior.
Many experienced poultry keepers follow these as a matter of course.
Provide your dual-purpose birds with a dust-bathing area, as being able to bathe in dust seems to make chickens more content and quieter.
If you provide a place for chickens to seek cover and shade, they will feel safer and won’t carry on with loud cackling.
Give your chickens entertaining snacks such as mealworms or scratch grains.
We recommend treats like these found on Amazon.
There are homemade options like a chicken swing or hanging a head of lettuce or cabbage on a string for your chickens to peck at.
Talk with other poultry keepers in your area and see what they do.
The same idea works for water too.
Provide a constant source of fresh water (cool water, even better in summer).
They won’t complain about being thirsty if they’re always hydrated.
While this bird is heat tolerant, it doesn’t mean it won’t complain about being thirsty in warm climates.
Fun Facts About New Hampshire Red Chickens
The New Hampshire Red chicken was created by Professor “Red” Richardson.
He aimed to create hens with faster feathering, growth, and maturity rate.
On top of the above, he also wanted a good egg-laying ability but mainly used for meat production.
The hardy bird was used in the Chicken of Tomorrow contest, an event created in the late 1940s to find farmers or producers using genetics to create an excellent dual-purpose bird meeting the consumer’s needs.
Although the favorite breed is predominantly red (particularly the neck feathers), there are two other varieties of the breed, the New Hampshire white and a blue-tailed variety created in Holland, both of which are very rare.
Its rose comb and rich tail feathers make this a lovely bird and a favorite breed to make an exhibition bird.
The New Hampshire Red was one of the first breeds to establish the broiler industry.
Though smaller than most broilers these days, it is still considered a fair meat bird.
Although created from the Rhode Island Red, the New Hampshire Red was admitted as a separate breed to the American Poultry Association in 1935.
After the Canaan Elementary School petitioned and proposed legislation, the New Hampshire Red became the official state poultry of New Hampshire in 2018.