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Amberlink Chickens: Breed Profile, Behavior and Care


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Amberlink chickens are a unique hybrid breed that’s known for being exceptional egg layers, although they also have their share of problems as well.

There is very little not to like about the Amberlink chicken breed though, that’s why it is such a popular choice these days.

The Amberlink chicken breed is very well-balanced and it’s highly appreciated for the following:

  • Its incredible egg laying abilities
  • Its amazing foraging skills
  • Its calm demeanor and temperament
  • Its hardiness

As such, this has become one of the favorite backyard breeds for a lot of farmers out there.

If you want to find out more about this hybrid breed then keep on reading because we’re just getting started:

Origins and History

Amberlink chicken origins
Charley’s Chicks / facebook.com

Referring to Amberlink chickens as a chicken breed is not correct technically, since they are not categorized as such.

Instead, they are a hybrid that was created by mixing the following:

Interestingly enough though, you can also create them by using white Plymouth Rock chickens too.

This has become a much more popular choice these days due to how much more common this option is.

Do keep in mind though that not every one of these breeding pairs will result in an Amberlink chicken.

Sometimes the chicks will become either Rhode Island Reds or ISA Browns. So, even when using the correct formula, you may still end up with a failure.

Amberlink Chicks
Abendroth Hatchery / facebook.com

So, there is always a 50/50 chance that you will get an Amberlink chicken, and there’s nothing you can do to increase those odds.

Some claim that breeding two Amberlink chickens together will increase your chances of having an Amberlink offspring.

But even this method has its faults as it is not guaranteed that you will win that 50/50.

Keep in mind that you are playing around with genes that are very complex and random, so you can never be sure of the results.

This is why so many people opt to buy their Amberlink chickens as opposed to breeding them.

Amberlink Chicken Lifespan

Amberlink hen
Ventura Grain Co., Inc. / facebook.com

Hybrid chickens are known for living much shorter lifespans than purebred chickens.

This is mostly because their genes are interspliced in such a way that they cannot naturally live as long as purebred chickens can.

So, while you can expect most purebred chickens to live upwards of 8 years in total, hybrids can usually get half of that or less.

The Amberlink chicken breed is actually a perfect example of this as these chickens can only really live for around 3 to 4 years.

They will be productive for the first year of their lives after which their egg laying ability will go on a downwards spiral.

Appearance and Characteristics

Amberlink Rooster
Oakview Farm / facebook.com

Looking at Amberlinks from an objective point of view, we can safely say that they look a lot like Delaware chickens.

This especially applies to the adults as you won’t be able to tell them apart from Delawares unless your eye is trained for it.

As soon as you get up close though, you should be able to tell the difference between the two quite easily.

This is how you can tell the Amberlinks apart from Delawares:

  • Delaware chickens have pure white coats that make them look like little puffs of clouds.
  • Amberlinks have flecks of color running across their bodies.
  • As chicks, Amberlinks are entirely yellow regardless of their sex.
  • The pullets should also have shades of red and amber on their wings.
  • As they get older, the cockerels’ plumage will turn more amber, which is where they get their name from.

What’s interesting to note about Amberlink chickens is that they can sometimes keep their Rhode Island Red parent size.

This means that your chicken will grow quite large while also being quite lean for a medium-sized chicken.

For the most part, you can expect your roosters to weigh around 6lbs or 2.72kg by the time they mature.

The hens on the other hand will usually weigh around 4lbs or 1.81kg each.

Here is how you can usually tell the females apart from the males:

  • The females have a color pattern running across their wings and/or their tails
  • The males have a color pattern running from their necks down to their backs

Personality and Temperament

Amberlink Chickens Personality
@accidentalcountryfolk / instagram.com

Here are the main personality traits that we can attribute to the Amberlink chicken breed:

  • Friendly and social
  • Playful and energetic
  • Amazing foragers and free rangers

First, these chickens absolutely love hanging out with other animals. They will even hang out with horses, cats and dogs all the same.

As long as they don’t get pushed around too much, these little guys will love spending their time with anyone whatsoever.

This also extends to other humans, as these chickens will spend all their time chasing you around the coop all day long. That’s believed to be a trait that they inherited directly from their ISA Brown parent.

While Red Island Rhode chickens are not violent by any means, they can be quite unapproachable. This is also due to their large size as they will stand their ground if push comes to shove.

And that’s not to say that every Rhode Island Red is going to be a little feathered demon. No, there are a lot of Rhode Island Reds that are very gentle souls too.

Amberlinks will always be very friendly and social with anyone that gives them the time of day.

So, you will never have that fear that they will charge at you the moment you turn your back to them.

Instead, Amberlinks are known for being very calm and stress-free birds. This makes them amazing backyard chicken.

Amberlink chicken
Saddleworth Poultry / facebook.com

As long as you have some feed on you, these chickens will swarm you in a matter of seconds.Keep in mind that while they’ll appreciate tasty snacks, they don’t depend on them.

Instead, these chickens are pretty self-sufficient. As long as you have a thick field close by, they’ll forage their way to a three-course meal in no time.

At the same time, these chickens can hold their own in most any climates out there. They can survive in both cold weather as well as intense heat.

So, just to reiterate, this is what you need to know about Amberlink chickens:

  • These chickens are very friendly and easygoing
  • They love being around others
  • They are very low maintenance investments
  • They are amazing foragers
  • They love being around humans and/or other animals

Amberlink Chickens Egg Laying

Amberlink Chickens Egg Laying
@farmyardblooms / instagram.com

If you are looking for a meat producer, there are plenty of better options out there than Amberlink chickens.

But if you want a good egg laying chicken to have around your home, you won’t ever regret investing in them.

Since they are hybrid birds, Amberlink chickens can end up laying as many as 270 large brown eggs per year. This makes them some of the most proficient egg layers on the market.

On top of that they can also produce eggs during the winter months.

So, if you are looking for a good egg laying breed that you can continuously profit off of, Amberlinks are the way to go.

The egg business is not an easy one to get into, but it is well worth it as a constant source of revenue.

So, if you want to ensure yourself a place in that industry, you should consider getting yourself Amberlink chickens too.

These chickens are also very low maintenance birds, although you should still try to nurture and take care of them.

Without that bond between you and your chickens they won’t lay as many eggs as they could normally.

Health Issues and Care

Amberlink chicken care
@jodimckennadotcom / instagram.com

While hybrid breeds do come with their fair share of advantages, there are also some disadvantages that you should know about.

For example, you have the fact that they are very productive but at the same time they have very short lifespans.

While pure breeds can live up to be around 8 years old or so, most hybrids can live only up to half of that.

This is important to note as while Amberlinks are very profitable, their lifespan is rather short.

Because their entire life goal is to lay eggs, they will suffer a lot to achieve that.

For example, this is what most Amberlink chickens have to deal with on a daily basis:

  • Protein deficiency
  • Egg-laying problems
  • Extreme stress which can even lead to depression

To lay those eggs, they will need a lot of protein in their diet. While they can get a large portion of that from foraging alone, you should still feed them a lot of protein too.

Without that quality feed, Amberlinks’ greatest quality will be hindered altogether and they’ll suffer a lot from it.

Amberlink pullets
Salomon Gardens / facebook.com

Amberlinks will also get stressed out very easily because of that protein deficiency.

Feeding your Amberlinks enough protein will result in them living longer and happier lives.

We have heard time and time again how Amberlinks will end up dying within a year or two if not fed a proper nutritious diet.

As is the case with most hybrid breeds, Amberlinks are quite productive egg layers for a year of their lives.

After that year passes, their egg production numbers will turn quite erratic overnight.

On top of that you may also find that your chicken has the following problems:

  • Egg peritonitis
  • Prolapse
  • Egg binding

You may think that these are horrible but not likely to happen, but you’d be mistaken.

Most hybrid chicken breeds are subjected to those issues as they grow older and older.

They are inevitable in a lot of the cases, although you can postpone them by feeding your chicken a proper protein diet.

Also keep in mind that Amberlink chickens are considered to be prey animals. So, this adds to their stressful lives all the more.

They are the perfect snatch for birds of prey, foxes and even rats. So, make sure to keep them in their enclosures otherwise they will be gone by the end of the day.

Tips for Raising Amberlinks

Tips for Raising Amberlinks
Hoffman’s Poultry / facebook.com

Here are the main tips that we always recommend to those looking to invest in hybrid chicken breeds:

  • You need to secure a shelter for them
  • Make sure to provide them with quality feed
  • Always consult a professional

Secure a Shelter for Them

Amberlink chickens need a good place to hide and sleep in, and you need to be the one to provide them with that.

As far as what the shelter is supposed to be made out of, you will need to have it be made out of wood or metal.

You may also set up a fence outside to keep any would-be predators from getting in.

Don’t forget about the lighting either, as light is the only clock that these chickens know about.

So, use that lighting to your advantage as that way they will know when to lay their eggs and when to stop.

You will need to provide them with plenty of light especially during the cold season to encourage egg laying.

Provide Them with Quality Feed

Amberlink chicken feed
Hall Boys Hen House / facebook.com

While Amberlinks are exceptional egg layers, they are also vulnerable to a lot of health problems.

The only tool you have to help you save their lives is their diet, so always make sure to spare no expenses in that department.

For chicks, they will need a lot of protein to grow up and be capable of laying so many eggs per year.

So, you should aim for somewhere between 18% and 24% protein feed.

After they’ve matured you can drop that down to 16% and 18%. Without this protein they will not be able to lay eggs at their maximum potential.

Always Consult a Professional

Hybrid breeds come with their own fair share of health problems. As such, you will need to have a professional on speed dial to make sure that everything’s okay with them.

We recommend that you have monthly checkups in store to keep them happy and healthy at all times.

You should always get a second opinion from a vet before you start doing it as they’ll know better than you what your chicks need.

On top of that, you should also work with hatcheries to make sure that you are raising your chicks properly.


Amberlink chickens
Photo by smikeymikey1 / stock.adobe.com

Amberlinks might be some of the sweetest birds in the world, but they may not be the best breed for everyone.

This is because they come with their share of problems, although most of those can be postponed or removed from the picture altogether.

So, remember that you need to play the role of provider with them, and your job never ends.

As long as you do your job though, your chickens will reward you with over 270 eggs per year.

In that way it’s a bit of a give and take with Amberlink chickens. But trust us when we tell you that if you do your job properly you will not regret investing into them.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

What Color Egg Does an Amberlink Chicken Lay?

Amberlink chickens lay medium to dark brown eggs.

Are Amberlinks Aggressive?

Amberlink roosters are not overtly aggressive. In fact, they are not any more aggressive than any other standard breed.

What Makes an Amberlink Chicken?

Amberlink chickens are a result of the hybridization of the ISA Hendrix genetic line alongside one of the following:

  • Rhode Island Reds
  • White Plymouth Rocks
  • White Island Reds

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About Leah Shelton

Involved in the “green” arena for over 20 years, Leah has worn many hats due to her diverse experience and knowledge in the field. In addition to writing for Agronomag, she’s also a sustainability consultant with a unique perspective on eco-friendly farming practices. Learn more about Agronomag's Editorial Process.

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