Breed Spotlight: The Wyandotte
The Wyandotte chicken breed is named after the Native American Wyandotte tribe that originated in the upstate New York and Ontario, Canada area in the early 1870’s. In spite of the breed’s name, there is no known historical connection between the tribe and the chicken breed. The breed was originally named the American Sebright or Sebright Cochin, but was then renamed to the Wyandotte, probably for the sake of clarity since the Sebright and Cochin breeds already existed.
The Wyandotte breed was first recognized by the American Poultry Association in 1883. The Silver Laced color variety was the first color recognized. Today, there are nine color varieties that are APA recognized: Black, Blue, Buff, Columbian, Golden Laced, Partridge, Silver Laced, and Silver Penciled.
The Wyandotte’s heritage is somewhat of a mystery, although it’s easy to see that the Dark Brahma was one of the breeds used to develop the Wyandotte. The Silver Spangled Hamburg is another breed attributed to the development of the Wyandotte. Later on, the Barred Plymouth Rock was bred to a white Wyandotte to develop the Columbian Wyandotte. From there, several other breeds contributed their color genetics to develop the many color varieties of the Wyandotte that we see today.
The Wyandotte is a good producer of eggs and meat. The average weight of the mature rooster is 8-9 pounds and of a hen is 7 pounds. Their eggs are medium sized and light to medium brown in color. A hen produces, on average, around 160 eggs annually.
The Wyandotte has a rose comb, heavy body size and ample feathering, making this breed a good choice for colder climates. The hens can become broody and are known to be excellent mothers.
Several years ago, the Wyandotte was considered to be endangered and was on the Livestock Conservancy’s priority list. Since 2016, the Wyandotte graduated from the priority list and at this time is not in danger of being lost forever. Thank you to those breeders and the Livestock Conservancy who work to keep the Wyandotte active in our poultry heritage.
Four Short Videos on Each Color Option We Offer
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