BEAUTIFUL, SMART, CURIOUS, BIG HENS! – LOCAL PICK UP!
They lay the beautiful chocolate eggs!
Barnevelder Chicken History
The Barnevelder chicken is a newer breed, but its history is still a little unclear. It’s believed to have originated in the Dutch town of Barnevelder in the Netherlands, hence the name.
Many keepers believe that the Barnevelder was made by breeding a landrace bird with breeds like the Brahma and Cochin. The exact genetic mixture of this chickens is still up for debate. The town these chickens came from was known for supplying eggs, so they likely bred this breed for improved egg production.
The unique coloring of Barnevelder chickens was rarely seen in the early 1900s. It suggests that these chickens have some Indian Game genes in them to create the arrowhead pattern.
Barnevelder Chicken Appearance
Most Barnevelder chickens have a similar appearance, which causes them to stand out from other breeds. So, let’s see what that look is and how it changes between different life stages.
What Color Eggs Do Barnevelders Lay?
Barnevelder chickens lay chocolate brown colored eggs. However, the more eggs a chicken produces, the lighter colors they’ll be. So, over time, your Barnevelder eggs might appear closer to regular brown or light brown.
Barnevelder Chick Appearance
Barnevelder chicks might vary in terms of colors, but most are fuzzy with dark brown feathers on their back and lighter feathers on their bellies. Their feathers get darker and more consistent as they age.
Barnevelder Adult Appearance
Most adult Barnevelders have what’s called a “double laced golden” color. It looks like their feathers are dark with lighter arrowhead patterns on them. This pattern occurs all over their bodies, but their necks are usually a solid dark brown color.
They have a single red comb, along with small red wattles and earlobes. Their beak and legs are usually a dark yellow color. Most keepers describe their body shape as rectangular with a U-shaped back.
Some other possible colors include white, silver, and double laced blue.
Most hens weigh 5 to 6 pounds while roosters weigh between 7 and 8 pounds. So, they’re a little bit larger than the average chicken.
Barnevelder chickens weren’t accepted into the Poultry Club of Great Britain until 1923. Then, the American Poultry Association didn’t recognize them until 1991.
At first, the only recognized colors were double laced and partridge. Now, each association varies based on what colors and features they accept.
Barnevelder Chicken Temperament
The Barnevelder chicken is known as a friendly, easygoing breed. Even the roosters rarely pick fights with other animals. They usually enjoy the company of humans, so they might come to greet you even if you don’t have food.
These birds are smart and curious. They love to follow you around or explore the nearby area if something seems interesting. Since they love wandering around, they are excellent birds for removing pests, such as bugs and weeds.
Most Barnevelder hens aren’t known for being broody, but some might want to care for their eggs and chicks more than the average chicken. It’s unlikely that broodiness will be an issue in your coop.
Barnevelders are fairly talkative, but their sounds are soft, so they’re not considered “squawky.” However, they will speak up if they sense danger nearby. Thus, they’re best for keepers that don’t have other neighbors close by.
Do Barnevelder Chickens Get Along with Other Animals?
Yes, most Barnevelder chickens get along well with other animals. They’re easygoing and unlikely to pick fights, so they’ll make a good addition to any farm. Luckily, they’re also big enough that they probably won’t get picked on by more aggressive breeds.
Barnevelder Chicken Care Requirements
Barnevelder chickens have standard care requirements. As long as you give them plenty of food, water, and space to roam, they’ll thrive just like any other bird. Here are some specific details about their care.
As chicks, Barnevelder chickens should be given a feed with a high protein percentage. 20% to 24% protein crumbles are ideal for their first eight weeks. Then, you can slowly decrease the protein percentage. By 16 weeks old, they should be eating a feed with 16% protein instead.
However, there are some exceptions to these recommendations. Birds that are stressed or molting can eat up to 20% protein in their diets to give their metabolisms a boost. Calcium should also be provided for hens, usually in the form of an oyster shell. If hens need more calcium in their bodies, they will eat it.
Insoluble grit is an essential part of a Barnevelder chicken’s diet because it makes it easier for them to digest food. It can be offered in a separate container from their regular feed. However, if you allow your chickens to free range and forage on their own, they won’t need to rely on insoluble grit as much.
Foraging is a great way for chickens to get additional nutrients. So, consider giving them some free range time during the day. In addition to offering them proper food, make sure they always have clean water available to them as well.
Barnevelder chickens are great for egg laying. They produce about 3 to 4 eggs per week, which is about 150 to 200 eggs per year. They lay large, brown-colored eggs. The eggs are known for their chocolate brown color, but some might appear lighter.
As a bonus, the Barnevelder chicken can also lay eggs in the winter, as opposed to other breeds that slow or halt production in colder months. Thus, they’re more consistent for families looking for eggs to sell and eat.
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