Breed: Wyandotte chicken
Origin: Wyandotte chickens were called “American Sebright” fowl until the late 1800s, when Mr. Fred A. Houdlette decided to name them “Wyandotte,” after a powerful tribe of Native Americans in New York State who had shown friendliness to settlers. In 1883, the Wyandotte chicken was admitted to the Standard of Perfection with the Silver Laced color pattern as the first variety. The genetic history remains a mystery. Mr. Theo Hewes in his 1908 book writes, “When by accident the blood of several breeds of fowls was mingled … there was none to predict that these crosses, brought together no doubt by merest accident, would give to poultry fanciers a foundation for one of the most popular breeds of fowl the world has ever known. But such is true, and there is not today, nor never has been at any time, a single person that could give an absolutely correct account of the crosses that produced the first Wyandotte.”
Varieties: The American Poultry Association recognized nine varieties of large fowl and 10 bantam varieties. The American Bantam Association recognizes 18 varieties. In large fowl, the White and Silver Laced are the most popular. In Bantams, Whites, Blacks, and Partridge are the most popular.
Egg Color: Brown, tan
Egg Size: Large
Laying Habits: 175-200 eggs per year
Skin Color: Yellow
Weight: Large fowl are heavy (7 to 8 pounds); Bantams range from 1.5 to 2 pounds.
Standard Description: The Silver Laced Wyandotte chicken is the parent variety of the Wyandotte family. The true origin is shrouded in mystery. The Dark Brahma and Spangled Hamburgs were used by the originator of the “American Sebright,” which was evidenced by the cropping out of the Hamburg comb and Dark Brahma color markings in some of the earlier Eastern strains.
Popular Use: Great brown egg layer and meat bird.
It really isn’t a Wyandotte chicken if it is: All general breed disqualifications apply.
“Because the comb lies close to the head, it is not subject to frostbite as a bird with a single comb. If you exhibit poultry, you may notice that the Wyandotte breed is quite popular in colder climates such as the Upper Midwest.” — Don Monke (Backyard Poultry, June / July 2012)
“They are consistent, reliable layers, are resilient to illness, and have a good sturdy body. The Wyandotte have such a pleasant disposition, and I rarely see them participating in any flock pecking drama. They are not particularly fond of being cuddled, but they are fairly tame and friendly.”— Janet Garman of Timber Creek Farm.
Presented by: Greenfire Farms