Decorative chickens - is the result of many years of work of breeders. They were derived by a peculiar modification of the key characteristics of productive rocks. The properties required by specialists have been forming for more than a decade. Now we have the opportunity to choose from a variety of ornamental varieties of poultry. Body type, plumage shades - all these moments made hens, intended for aesthetic pleasure and breeding at home, quite popular among farmers.
More than 200 years ago in Russia, breeders also started breeding new decorative works of chickens. Now this poultry industry is no longer at the peak of its popularity. Still, in the first place practicality, and investing, we want to get the result. In the case of poultry - this is their productivity, breeding, meat, the possibility of incubation and egg production. As for decorative breeds, they are not replete with similar characteristics, therefore, at the moment, domestic poultry farmers have begun to breed them less frequently. Nevertheless, these varieties have a mass of advantages that should be paid attention to.
This breed of ornamental chickens includes several varieties. The first is dwarf chickens, mostly found in the wild in Japan. The second category is a mini-copy of some productive breed. Get it by crossing the representative of any type of domestic chickens with dwarf specimen. What is remarkable bentamki?
Dwarf birds are highly resistant to various harmful factors, as well as fairly productive egg-laying abilities. Bentam is not afraid of a sharp change of weather.
As for their temperament, the hens are calmer than the males, their maternal instinct is well developed, and they diligently incubate their eggs. The males can protect their livestock from the attack of a kite, even despite their mini-dimensions (layers make up to 600 g, while roosters weigh up to 1 kg). What is interesting, if you want to grow bentham at home, you will not have to excel in the provision of decent housing conditions. These chickens are unpretentious and feel great even in the yard. They eat little by virtue of their size, rarely get sick and quickly get used to the new environment. In the chicken coop, you must maintain a dry microclimate and cleanliness. Otherwise, you will not have to worry about the occurrence of any difficulties in the process of breeding bantamok chickens.
Dutch white and white
Dutch white-crested also belongs to the category called ornamental breeds of chickens. Considering the fact that this breed performs aesthetic functions, it also differs with good egg production: it brings up to 100-120 eggs per year to the farmer, and for a decorative variety of poultry, these are excellent indicators. However, with fairly good species peculiarities, the Dutch white-cooled chickens are not particularly popular.
Remember that they require scrupulous care, so before you buy a couple of copies in your chicken coop, make sure that you can create for the necessary conditions. And yet this breed will be a true decoration of any house. A key element that distinguishes the Dutch white-fingered chickens against the background of representatives of other breeds is the fluffy and very voluminous tuft on the head, which replaces the crest.
These chickens also have red earrings. If you want in the breed of poultry to combine a good egg production with decorative features, you should definitely pay attention to the Dutch white-chilled.
The appearance of such a hen somewhat resembles the plumage of Japanese bantamok. Shades can differ among themselves, but the most popular is white or yellow with dark feathers in the tail section. Egg production is low: they bring about 70-80 eggs per year to the poultry farmer.
In addition, the chicken egg weighs no more than thirty grams. Dwarf layers have a well-developed maternal instinct and hatch eggs well. As for the weight of adults, it is 500 g in chickens and 600 g in males. The miniature breed of poultry was bred in Japan, and entered Europe in the 19th century. Now this variety has gained rather wide popularity and is in demand among farmers.
This one certainly will not go unnoticed. In the process of working on its breeding breeders set a key goal: to get a bright plumage. And the result met all their expectations. And the plumage is present even on the legs of the hens. The weight of adult representatives of the breed is small, up to 600-800 g. But this does not prevent the hens from giving about 100 eggs a year weighing 30 g per year.
It is an ideal option for the monastery: the chickens require a bit of space, they do not need special care. Moreover, these dwarf chickens eat very little. You can select several instances of poultry for your chicken coop by the plumage. It is usually tricolor, but shades may vary. Porcelain, black and white, speckled blue and white are considered the most popular colors.
Among the dwarf breeds of ornamental chickens there are their own “Lilliputians”. Such is the representative of the breed Malaysian serama. In terms of its dimensions, the hen barely surpasses the usual pigeon, and it weighs about 250 g. Their constitution is somewhat upright, and the tail is also raised upwards. These chickens are characterized by the presence of a bent neck and pushed forward chest. By the way, the more the breast part "bulges" forward, the better for the breed. Given the miniature size, they are mostly contained not in the farmstead, but in cages. The breed called Malaysian serama includes three quality classes:
- "A" - the most expensive, the weight of an adult chicken should not exceed 350 g,
- "B" - weight is 500 g,
- "C" - the weight can reach 600 g. This type of breed is considered the cheapest.
Caring for similar poultry is remarkable for the need to maintain heat in the coop and cages, as well as to provide special food for the chickens.
If the usual productive breeds do not require scrupulous care, with decorative will have to try. For farmers who have little experience in this business, it will be hard to grow decorative chickens at home. The first thing to take care of is feed. Cabbage, carrots, beets, barley, oats, etc. should be present in the daily ration of poultry. The latter two products contain large amounts of vitamin E, which positively affects the fertility of chicken eggs. Among the mineral additives emit chalk, shells, eggshells, gravel. They are required if your goal is a balanced, healthy diet for poultry.
The greatest difficulty for any poultry farmer in this case is weather conditions. Most of the representatives of decorative breeds are not adapted to the cold, moreover, they require constant fresh vegetables from the ground, and in the winter period in Russia it is very difficult to provide this. Plus, decorative chicken should dwell in a spacious room, so as not to spoil their appearance. For some poultry it is necessary to equip low roosts in the house, because they do not know how to fly. If you comply with all the mandatory conditions for the care of decorative chickens, you will be able not only to grow them at home, but also to successfully incubate them. It is undesirable to ignore the basic recommendations of specialists, since this is fraught with serious consequences.
Decorative breeds of chickens
The following breeds are popular among poultry farmers:
Giants of the whole chicken tribe. An adult rooster weighs 4–4.5 kg, and a chicken, 3–3.5 kg. In chickens, dark-colored bramac weighs 500–700 g more. Delivered from North America. Late ripening: ready for breeding no earlier than 7–9 months. 100–120 eggs are laid annually.
Dutch white hair
The most amazing detail in the appearance of the Dutch is the tuft, falling on the sides of the head. Also noteworthy is a pattern in the form of a butterfly on the sides of the beak - an indicator of the purity of the breed. The mass of roosters reaches 2–2.6 kg, chickens - 1.5–2.1 kg. High productivity — 100–110 eggs per year, weighing 55–60 g.
English breed. Birds are medium in size and egg production. Adult roosters gain a mass of 2–2.5 kg, chickens - 1.7–2 kg. 120 white-finished eggs weighing 48–55 g per year are obtained from them.
Exot with a completely black color. Even bones and blood are painted black. Eggs are small (about 100 per year), but large eggs. Roosters weigh 1.7–2 kg, chickens weigh 1.2–1.5 kg.
They are easily recognizable by the lush "pants" on their feet. The color is varied: black, white, fawn, speckled. Very large (roosters up to 5 kg, chickens - 3.5–4 kg), lay 100–110 eggs per year with an average weight of 55 g, with a yellow-brown shell. The peak of egg production is in winter.
Dwarf kohinhin small size with white, marble or blue color. The blue mini cochin is easy to tame; he often demonstrates a strong attachment to the master.
The name comes from the Nizhny Novgorod village of Pavlovo, where they were withdrawn. Birds are distinguished by an article and the beauty of their plumage: gold with black or silver spots. The head is decorated with a crest.
Pavlovsk chickens are productive. During the year, 150–170 eggs weighing 45–55 g are laid. Roosters gain a weight of 1.5–2.3 kg, chickens - 1.1–1.5 kg.
In China, where they come from, the phoenixes were revered as symbols of the empire. They have the longest tail, reaching 10 m. Each year the tail grows by 90 cm. In other regions, the phoenix has an average tail size of 3–3.5 m. Because of this, chickens are kept almost without movement so that the tail does not lose its beauty. In Russia, this practice is not common, the hens shorten the tail to 90 cm, so they can move freely. Annual productivity - 140–160 eggs.
They fall directly into two categories - decorative and meat-egg. The weight of roosters is 3.5–4 kg, chickens — 2.5–3 kg. The average annual egg-laying is 180–200 eggs. Chickens willingly sit on the eggs.
Chickens meat-egg direction with a bias in the decorative. Very cute, with beautiful sideburns. Roosters increase weight 3.5–4 kg, chickens 2.5–3 kg. The annual number of eggs laid is 160–180.
Decorative meat-egg, or universal type. External feature - luxurious crest on the head. With good feeding, roosters gain weight 2.7 kg, chickens - 1.8 kg. Females rush on average every other day, so it’s not a problem to get 150–160 eggs per year. Eggs are white or cream colored, with an average weight of 56 g.
The name combines many varieties that can be divided into two large groups: purebred bantam and others. These little chickens from Japan weigh 700–1200 g and lay 45–70 eggs per year. The benthams are energetic, the roosters are great singers and warriors, and the hens conscientiously hatch chickens. It is bred both for decorative purposes and for obtaining tasty meat and eggs.
Amazingly beautiful chickens, often white and yellow, but there are also silvery, speckled, striped. Small birds, dwarf roosters weigh 600 g, hens - 500 g. Each year 45–70 eggs weighing 30 g each are carried. Great hens.
Submarine bentamki. Birds are light and compact, so they fly well. They have a rounded body, protruding chest and fan-shaped tail. Dwarf chickens - sybrates weigh 400–450 g, cocks - 500 g. Each year 60–90 eggs weighing 30–40 g are laid.
The content of ornamental chickens
The main part of decorative rocks was formed in Southeast Asia and the Far East: in China and Japan.
The main task of the poultry farmer - to create conditions as close as possible to the usual. If ordinary chickens require minimal care, the decorative ones are very whimsical. Inexperienced poultry farmer to grow them is not easy.
The greatest complexity is represented by climatic conditions. Most of the decorative rocks are heat-loving, do not tolerate the cold, therefore a heated poultry house is required for wintering.
- The floor in the house is settled as follows: the bottom layer is a crushed stone-bitumen mixture (this is necessary for moisture removal), on top is a layer of peat and dry leaves, hay.
- Moisture and drafts are unacceptable in the house. Dryness, warmth, cleanliness - the condition of a safe wintering birds. The room is equipped with ventilation.
- A thick layer of bedding is laid for the winter. For chickens with feathered legs, the litter is often changed and loosened so that the feathers are not soiled.
- To preserve the beauty of the plumage, crowdedness is contraindicated for ornamental breeds of chickens They need room more spacious than ordinary chickens. Non-flying equip low perches.
- The duration of daylight hours affects the egg production and general well-being. Ideally, it is 14-15 hours. Therefore, intensive lighting is an important part of the arrangement of the winter house.
- In the hen house you need a bath for bathing with dry crushed clay or sand. Decorative roosters and chickens thus get rid of parasites in feathers.
- In the warm season, chickens cannot be locked up; walks are obligatory for them: in summer, it is advisable to sow the territory of walking with green grass - the birds readily peck at it.
- For laying and incubation of eggs in the house nests are established - wooden boxes with hay.
For normal functioning of ornamental chickens and for obtaining full-fledged offspring, proper feeding is extremely important.
The diet of ornamental birds includes:
- fresh vegetables: cabbage, carrots, beets,
- cereals: oats, barley, preferably in germinated form,
- young seedlings in large quantities contain vitamin E, necessary for better fertilization of eggs,
- B vitamins and yeast. In the diet they are injected by yeast feed,
- cottage cheese, food waste,
- grass meal contains essential protein. The most useful is nettle flour and young stalks of barley,
- additives containing minerals: chalk, shells, eggshells, gravel.
Chickens are obtained by laying the hen on eggs, but the incubator method is more common. To breed offspring from their own birds, during the breeding period, the hens are surrounded by care, paying special attention to the balance and diversity of the diet. The ornamental chicken itself takes care of the chickens who need only feed.
Kids from the incubator are completely dependent on the owner. Pedigree chickens are demanding to care and any deviation from the rules of the content turns into their death.
- In the first days of life, the chicks are in a box that is continuously lit and warmed by the incandescent or red lamp.
- Chickens do not like cramping. The box size must be 70% larger than the area required for placement. The box is equipped with an angle for feeding and watering the young. The bottom of the box is filled with sawdust, small hay. Be sure to monitor the dryness and purity of the filler. When staying on a wet, dirty bedding, chickens will easily get sick and die.
- Feed the chickens ready-made feed, chopped corn grits are also suitable. From the age of 7 days, the ration is supplemented with kefir and curd, at the age of one month the greens are gradually introduced.
- To prevent diseases give vitamins.
Mobile, developed chicks with a good appetite - an indicator of proper care.
Most of the decorative breeds come from Southeast Asia and the Far East, where they were bred for hundreds of years. In Russia, the breeding of dwarf chickens is a young trend, numbering no more than two centuries. The efforts of breeders to improve the exterior of chickens have led to the fact that most of the breeds became decorative, and some turned into sports.
Advantages and disadvantages
Poultry breeders loved the breed for a number of undeniable advantages:
- attractive, sometimes exotic looks,
- calm, peaceful nature,
- for breeding enough small room
- require less feed than other breeds.
There are also disadvantages, but they are few:
- weak instinct of incubation,
- the complexity of winter care.
These disadvantages do not interfere with decorative hens to conquer the hearts of breeders with unusual beauty and satisfactory performance.
Where to get members of the breed for breeding
Although these breeds are rare, and some are exotic, it is possible to find them in Russia, if desired, by contacting a specialized nursery. Buyers are offered adult individuals, young or fertilized eggs, ready for laying in the incubator and self-breeding chicks.
Unusual creatures, such as ornamental chickens, give joy from the contemplation of their beauty, as well as delight them with tasty eggs and meat.
Makarov Ivan Vasilyevich
Hereditary poultry farmer, owner of a poultry farm, graduated from St. Petersburg State Agrarian University with honors, the author of articles in specialized publications
Стоит отметить, что все декоративные курицы имеют очень необычный внешний вид. Ножки у птиц очень короткие, сначала вообще кажется, что на таких крохотных лапках невозможно ходить. И в этом есть доля правды, все декоративные курицы и петухи очень мало двигаются. Все чистокровные породы имеют короткие ноги и это доставляет птицам массу неудобств. That is why ornamental chickens, unlike ordinary layers, have a rather short lifespan.
Among the striking features of these birds, they always distinguish a wide chest, a high-set body and a rather fleshy body constitution. On the neck there is always enough fluffy plumage. Regarding the body, the head is rather large, with a scallop on it, which has the shape of a pod. Earrings and ears are small, painted red. The beak is often short, but strong enough. Its color depends on the color of the plumage. The tail should be straight and long enough.
Gender signs of decorative breeds are quite difficult to distinguish. However, chickens always have a smaller head compared to a rooster. In addition, the hen's crest is smaller and usually hangs to the side. Also in the plumage of the tail of the hens there are no sharp braids.
Breeds of ornamental chickens, characterized by an unusual appearance
- Shabo - decorative chickens whose weight does not exceed 600 grams (in particular, roosters). For the first time they appeared in Japan, where they served as decoration for the courtyards of wealthy people. The color of such decorative chickens can be white, silver, striped or red. The plumage is normal, curly, silk. The body is massive, the legs are short. The neck has a particularly thick plumage, the tail is very wide, resembling a fan.
- Milfleur. Decorative chickens have bright and spectacular plumage. It has a high thickness, even on the legs. Chickens and roosters of this breed weigh up to 800 grams, have good egg production - up to 100 eggs per year. They do not need too much feed and free space. Beautiful appearance and minimal maintenance costs make such decorative more and more famous.
- Malaysian serama.Representatives of the breed - the real crumbs! Their height is pigeon, the weight of the hen is about 250 grams, but the cock weighs only a little more. These are birds with a short calf, set vertically, the tail is raised up, and the neck is bent like that of a swan. Due to their small size, it is necessary to keep them only in specially equipped cells, providing special nutrition.
To decorative chickens grew viable, you need to feed them properly. You can not do without vitamins and easily digestible protein. An excellent source of these substances is yeast. They need to be added to regular food.
Do not forget about juicy food (beets, carrots, cabbage). They must be given every day. Maximum fertility is achieved with a high content of vitamin E in the body. It contains oats and barley.
Herbal flour can be the main source of protein. For this purpose, the best fit young grass with nettles. Shells, gravel, chalk, shells can be used to replenish the mineral balance. With a quality diet, young chickens will have excellent health and strong immunity.
What problems may arise
Not all ornamental breeds of chickens can survive the severe cold. Some require constant heat. In addition, birds need to ensure enough natural food for the whole year so that they can live comfortably.
Plumage can lose an attractive look. In order to prevent such consequences, it is necessary to provide each individual with free space. Some decorative chickens do not fly, for them it is worthwhile to equip reduced perches.
Some features of care
To ensure proper bird care you need to know and take into account a number of important points. Thus, heat-loving individuals are created special conditions so that they feel well during the cold period. Poultry houses equip, preventing drafts. A great solution would be a ventilation system.
The thickness of the litter should increase in winter. If chickens have feathered legs, the substrate should be loosened from time to time. We must not forget that the litter should be fresh, it needs to be changed periodically.
In low light, egg production is reduced. Pay particular attention to lighting, taking into account that the optimal day length for ornamental chickens should be 15 hours.
A huge role has the appearance of birds. Constantly monitor the diet of chickens, it should be as natural as possible.
The best decorative breeds of chickens
It so happens that for the most part ornamental breeds of chickens come from East and Southeast Asia. Therefore, they often require special conditions of detention. Creating a better environment for them and a familiar climate is a laborious and costly process. But truly, it's worth it!
Being engaged in breeding ornamental breeds of chickens, it is necessary to strictly monitor the inheritance of breed characteristics. This group of poultry reaches sexual maturity much later than its meat-egg relatives. It happens mostly to months to nine. Representatives of the decorations are also able to carry eggs, but they are not very productive. Well, if the chicken will give about 80 eggs a year.
There are such ornamental varieties that are grown exclusively for the purpose of smoking in love. For example, there are dwarf chickens weighing only up to one kilogram, which carry no more than 90 small eggs per year.
This breed is famous for its unusual downy plumage. Fragile and small birds with a tuft-shaped tuft on the head, without exaggeration, conquered the world with their beauty and elegance of form.
The color of the skin and bones of the representatives of the breed is also unusual - blue. Each of the five (!) Toes has its own plumage.
Chinese silk chickens should be kept in well-heated rooms, with a 12-hour light day. Then the bird will not perish and will not cease to be carried.
Adult cock weighs up to 1.4 kg. Laying a year brings up to 110 eggs, which is very good for such babies.
Of course, for the production of meat and eggs, there are other breeds of chickens that are easy to maintain and much more productive. But every poultry farmer, even if not immediately, but with time, necessarily buys decorative birds for his farm to please the eye. It is only necessary to prepare yourself in advance for the fact that most of the time it will take care of decorative chickens - so fastidious, but so beautiful.