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Tuesday, June 25, 2024

Breed Highlight: Appenzeller Spitzhauben Chickens

Appenzeller Spitzhauben

Spitzhauben chickens originate within the Appenzell district of Switzerland. They’re due to this fact typically known as Appenzeller Spitzhaubens. The Swiss phrase spitzhauben refers back to the breed’s crest of ahead curving feathers, which remind Appenzell residents of their conventional woman’s bonnets.

Close to Extinction

In accordance with The Livestock Conservancy, Spitzhaubens have been identified because the sixteenth century, saved in native monasteries as low upkeep chickens which are good layers. Nevertheless, by the top of World Struggle II the breed had practically develop into extinct.

In 1953 a German poultry breeder named Kurt Fischer acquired the three authentic varieties — black, golden spangled, and silver spangled. Via his breeding efforts, Fischer revived the breed from full extinction.

Fischer then helped get Spitzhauben chickens accepted into the German poultry normal. The breed has since been acknowledged by requirements in a number of different European international locations.

Within the late Nineteen Fifties, a former German prisoner of struggle who had been detained in Alabama after which repatriated, returned to the US with just a few dozen silver spangled Spitzhauben eggs. Lengthy-time Alabama poultry breeder Albert McGraw hatched the eggs. The ensuing chickens had been the primary identified Spitzhaubens in the US. To today, silver spangled continues to be the most well-liked Spitzhauben selection.

In the meantime, numerous breeders have since imported Spitzhaubens from Europe, growing the gene pool of the silver spangled selection in North America and introducing different varieties. Regardless of these imports and subsequent breeding efforts, Spitzhaubens stay comparatively uncommon in the US.

The American Poultry Affiliation doesn’t but acknowledge the breed. The Appenzeller Spitzhauben Membership of America, nevertheless, is working to get the breed standardized.

Hardy Appenzeller Spitzhauben Chickens

Having come from the alpine area of Switzerland, close to the borders of Germany and Austria, the Spitzhauben is a chilly hardy breed. However it additionally tolerates heat, humid climate, making it an all local weather rooster.

This mid-size breed lays 150 to 180 medium to massive white-shell eggs per 12 months. It is without doubt one of the few breeds that naturally lay in the course of the darkish winter months. The hens might or might not brood. After they do, they make terrific moms.

Spitzhaubens are usually slightly extra talkative than most different rooster breeds. They’re energetic and alert, making them distinctive foragers.

They fly rather well and prefer to roost in timber. Maintaining them confined requires both an particularly tall fence or a coated run. Clipping their wings is another choice, however makes them extra prone to predation.

Spitzhaubens have a vivid purple, V-shaped comb, blue-gray legs, and white earlobes and pores and skin. Roosters weigh about 4.5 kilos and hens weigh about 3.5 kilos.

Spitzhaubens at Cackle Hatchery®

Spitzhauben chickens in the US diverge fairly a bit from the unique breed. Most notable is their non-traditional crest. The feathers ought to be relatively sparse, stand upright, and curve towards the entrance, relatively than being spherical, full, and curving towards the again.

Like different severe Spitzhauben breeders, Cackle Hatchery has been working to right this defect. Working towards that enchancment, Cackle Hatchery imported three silver spangled roosters in 2013 for its personal breeding program. The silver spangled Appenzeller Spitzhauben has silvery white feathers, every marked with a V-shape black spangle on the tip.

Cackle Hatchery additionally breeds golden spangled Appenzeller Spitzhaubens from basis inventory obtained in 2015 from Dick Dickerson, a member of the Appenzeller Spitzhauben Membership of America. The golden spangled selection has golden purple feathers, every ending with a black V-shape spangle.

Since 2021, Cackle Hatchery has been breeding chamois spangled Appenzeller Spitzhaubens. This pastel selection has pale golden buff plumage set off by creamy white spangles.

At present Cackle Hatchery is growing a purple spangled Appenzeller Spitzhauben. This selection is much like the golden spangled, besides that the background colour is deep purple relatively than golden. Additionally, the purple spangled is a bit smaller than different varieties.

With a lot to supply, it’s no surprise that heritage Appenzeller Spitzhauben chickens are garnering curiosity amongst severe poultry lovers.

And that’s right now’s information from the Cackle Coop.

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