Speckled Sussex Chicken: Full Breed Profile 2024

Do you wonder which breed could offer both eggs and meat while being easy on your budget? 

The Speckled Sussex chicken is a smart option for farm owners due to many reason. Not only does it look unique and pretty, but it also lays a lot of light brown eggs. It’s a versatile breed that can be kept for both eggs and meat. These chickens don’t eat too much and are easy to take care of, making them a top pick for backyard chicken keepers.

As a poultry owner who’s been raising chickens for years, I’ll share everything you need to know about the Speckled Sussex chicken and its complete breed profile.

Speckled Sussex Chicken: Full Breed Profile

Before getting into the Speckled Sussex chicken, do check out this blog on Sapphire Splash Chicken if you want a chicken with the same egg laying capability as of Speckled Sussex. DO YOU KNOW ABOUT Sapphire Splash Chicken Breed

Breed NameSpeckled Sussex
Egg ProductionHigh (200-250 light brown eggs per year)
Egg ColorLight brown
Egg SizeMedium to Large
Start Laying AgeAround 7-9 months
WeightHens: 6.5-7 lbs; Roosters: Slightly heavier
Lifespan7-8 years or longer
TemperamentFriendly, calm, easy-going, enjoys human company
AppearanceUnique feather patterns with dark chestnut marks, more speckles with age
Climate PreferencePrefers cold but tolerates heat with shade and water


The Speckled Sussex chicken comes from England and has been around for a very long time, possibly since AD 43. It’s one of the oldest chicken breeds we know about. A special feature of this type of chicken is that it is available in a wide range of patterns and colors.

Originally, this chicken was just part of the Sussex breed, which started in Sussex, a place in England. People first started calling it the Speckled Sussex after it was shown at the first big chicken show in London Zoo in 1845.

Today, there are quite a few types of Sussex chickens, like the Red Sussex, Light Sussex and of course, the Speckled Sussex, among others. But only the light, red, and speckled types have official recognition by the American Poultry Association

The Speckled Sussex is the most traditional and was once the most common choice for chicken farmers, especially before modern egg-laying chickens and meat chickens became popular around World War II.

For a while, not many people were interested in raising Speckled Sussex chickens. But lately, as more people enjoy raising chickens in their backyards, this breed is becoming popular again. It’s even on the Livestock Conservancy’s list as a breed that’s making a comeback.

Speckled Sussex Chicken Facts

Speckled Sussex chickens lay around 4 eggs per week, adding up to 200-250 eggs a year.
They start laying eggs at about 7-9 months old.
These chickens are friendly, calm, and can get used to being around people easily.
They’re good for beginners because they’re low maintenance and do well in cold weather.
Sussex chickens keep laying eggs even during winter.


Speckled Sussex chickens start laying eggs pretty early, around 20 weeks old, which is faster than many other types of chickens that are raised for both eggs and meat. Their eggs are usually medium to big in size and have a light cream or pale brown color. 

On average, a Speckled Sussex hen lays about four or five eggs a week, which adds up to around 240 eggs a year. However, this could be variable as per the chicken and the environment it’s raised in.

Speckled Sussex Chicken egg

Average Life Span

Speckled Sussex chickens grow up a little quicker than other similar chickens. They’re ready to start laying eggs at about 20 weeks old, and they’re also big enough to be used for meat around the same time. But, if you’re raising them for meat, you ought to wait for over two months. Their weight will increase over time.

If you’re keeping them just as pets or for their eggs, these chickens can have a pretty long life. The lifespan of some Speckled Sussex can reach seven to eight years or even more with good care.

Temperament & Behavior

Speckled Sussex chickens are some of the friendliest chickens you can find. They are calm, easy-going, and like to follow you around the garden, looking for bugs and other snacks.

These chickens are a bit playful and curious, which makes them fun to watch as they explore your yard. They’re also pretty good at keeping themselves busy, scratching around for food. 

They don’t mind being in a coop, especially during the colder months, which makes them a good choice if you need to keep your chickens inside for a while.

Speckled Sussex chickens aren’t very loud. They make the usual chicken sounds like when they lay eggs or spot something interesting. They often want to hatch their own eggs, which is great if you’re looking to raise more chickens. They’re good at sitting on eggs and are caring mothers.

The only small issue is that because they’re so peaceful, they might get picked on by other, more bossy chickens in your coop, since they’re not the biggest or most pushy birds.

But overall, Speckled Sussex chickens are great for families with kids, other pets, or for anyone new to raising chickens. These chickens are usually healthy and don’t have many special care needs.


Some chicken breeds look so similar it’s hard to tell them apart, like Rhode Island Reds and New Hampshire Reds. But you won’t have that problem with Speckled Sussex chickens. They stand out with their beautiful and unique feather patterns.

Even when they’re just baby chicks, you’ll notice their special dark chestnut marks, especially around their eyes, making them look slightly like adorable chipmunks! Some chicks may be lighter, but most come with clear dark brown and pale stripes on their backs.

What’s really cool about these chickens is how they change as they get older. Their grown-up feathers are a rich, dark red with some white and black feathers mixed in. After each time they molt, or lose old feathers to get new ones, they end up with more white spots, so they look even more speckled as they age.

Their face parts like wattles, earlobes, and combs are all a deep red color. They have a beak the color of a horn, a wide, flat back, and a big, deep chest.

Speckled Sussex chickens have smooth legs without any feathers and just the usual number of toes, four. 

Feather patterns are what attracts the most attention to them. Recognized by the American Poultry Association since 1914, they’re considered part of the English class of chickens, while in Britain, they’re known as big, fluffy-feathered chickens.

There are smaller, bantam versions of the Speckled Sussex, but they’re rare and hard to come by.

Colors of Sussex hens

Speckled Sussex Chicken
Speckled Sussex Chicken 1

The Poultry Club of Great Britain recognizes eight color types of Sussex chickens: light, speckled, coronation, brown, red, white, and buff. 

The light Sussex chicken has a white body but with a black tail, black on its wing tips and around its wings; the feathers around its neck are white with black stripes.


Speckled Sussex chickens may not be the biggest chickens out there, but they’re not either the smallest. They’re somewhere in the middle to large size and are considered part of the heavy breed category. The hens usually weigh about 6.5 to 7 pounds, and the roosters are heavier.


Speckled Sussex chickens are usually kept for their eggs, but they’re also good for meat. Their meat is lighter than what you could expect from a backyard chicken, but it’s very tender, especially when the chicken is young. 

When it comes to size, these chickens usually provide about 6 to 7.5 pounds of meat, which is a good amount for a meal.

They’re also great at laying eggs, making them a perfect choice for both eggs and meat. These chickens lay a lot of medium to large, pale brown eggs, even during winter. Since they’re friendly and easy to handle, they can also be kept as pets or for showing.


Speckled Sussex chickens are good for both eggs and meat and can handle most weather types pretty well. They like cold weather more than hot, but they’ll be fine in the heat too if you make sure they have enough shade and water. They stay warm in the cold thanks to their thick feathers.

These chickens are on the chubby side, so they don’t really try to fly away much and are easy to keep inside a fence. 

You may have to watch out for predators if they get into your chicken area, but as long as your coop and run are secure, your chickens should be safe. It’s not common for Speckled Sussex chickens to escape because they usually don’t try to leave the area you’ve set up for them.

They’re also not very likely to get sick, no more than any other backyard chicken. But, because they have a lot of feathers, you might need to check them more often for bugs like mites and lice, which could be more of a problem for them.

 characteristics of Speckled Sussex chickens


You can buy them, usually costing between $3.00 and $4.00 each for chicks that haven’t been sorted by gender, from Cackle Hatchery.

We really like Cackle Hatchery and suggest checking them out. Unlike many places where you have to buy at least 25 chicks at a time, Cackle lets you buy just 3 if that’s all you need. They’ve got great reviews on Google and have been around since 1936.


Yes, Sussex hens lay about 200-250 light brown eggs each year, which means around 4 eggs every week! They start laying eggs a little later than some other chickens, around 8 months old. They’re an ideal pick if you want eggs throughout the year.

Around 7-9 months old. Speckled Sussex chickens are friendly and will keep laying eggs for many years, giving you around 250-280 eggs annually. They’re like the friendly dogs of the chicken world.

Yes, Sussex chickens are calm and friendly. They adjust well to different spaces, whether it’s roaming free or staying in a coop. They’re also pretty friendly with people and do better in bigger spaces. They tend to want to hatch eggs often in warmer weather.

Absolutely. Speckled Sussex chickens are easy to handle and tough, making them great for cold weather. They’re low effort to take care of and very friendly, which makes them perfect for people just starting out with chickens.

Yes, they do. Sussex chickens are one of the breeds that keep laying eggs even when it’s cold, so you can expect eggs from them all year round.

Are you ready to get some tough but pretty chickens for your backyard? Do bring Speckled Sussex chickens. As I’ve elaborated above, these chickens are not just nice to look at; they’ll also give you lots of eggs and plenty of good meat for your family.

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