Breed of the Month: Olandsk Dwarf chicken
Origin: Öland, off the southeastern coast of Sweden. It’s the second largest island in Sweden. Descended from British garden hens.
Standard Description: A petite Swedish landrace breed that nearly went extinct in the late 1980s. Not recognized by the American Poultry Association (APA).
Coloring: Speckled in red, black, white, and gray.
Egg Color, Size & Laying Habits:
• White / Tan
• 250+ per year
Hardiness: Cold hardy
Size: Dwarf, a true bantam breed
Popular Use: Perfect for the space-constrained chicken hobbyist
Testimonial from an Olandsk Dwarf chicken owner:
When looking for some unusual heritage breed chickens a friend introduced me to his beautiful breeding pair of Olandsk Dwarf chickens. I had never seen them before and was intrigued. They have gorgeous feathers packed into a small body.
They move fast and can be a little challenging to catch. This is normal for a landrace breed. It helps them survive and escape the clutches of a predator. The hens are a little more docile and slow moving.
Olandsk Dwarf chickens surprised me this spring by being a lot broodier than I expected. Since they are so flighty when being handled I didn’t think they would set well. But they did! They carried on for a lengthy brood, stealing eggs that were laid by other chickens. They kept adding eggs to the clutch so the hatch was prolonged. Not a good idea.
Although they set well on the eggs, they lacked in the mothering department. Each hatchling had to be removed to a separate brooder area because none of the hens were interested in being a momma hen.
In our flock, we have three hens and three roosters that will be split into breeding pairs when housing is available for that purpose. It is important to use non-related roosters for breeding programs.
Olandsk Dwarf chickens are gorgeous and gentle birds. Even with three roosters we have no fighting between the males. The females are docile but do not like to be handled. – Janet Garman, Timber Creek Farm
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