Wyandottes: A Comprehensive Guide

by Backyard Chicken Coops November 27, 2014

gold-laced-wyandotte

Wyandottes are splendid birds that come in an endless variety of colours. This American bred bird is incredibly popular all over the world - not only because they are so beautiful, but because they are productive layers and great backyard companions.

Lifespan

The Wyandotte has an average lifespan, ranging from about 6-12 years.

Class

Wyandottes are a chicken from the ‘American Class’.

Rarity

Wyandottes are a popular breed in Australia and not hard to find - if you're trying to track down some pure breeds that comply with all the Australian standards, then you might have to search a bit harder. Many Wyandotte breeders sell lots of different colour varieties, so you’re sure to find one you like.

Origin

The Wyandotte chicken is an all-American breed, originating from the state of New York. Their name comes from a Native American tribe, however whether they are actually associated in any way with the tribe is unknown.

Following this, different varieties of Wyandotte gradually made their way across different states of America - such as the Partridge, Silver Laced and Buff.

Fun Facts

  • Popular show breed around the world

  • New colour varieties of the Wyandotte are still being created by breeders around the globe - one of the most recent is the ‘Chocolate Partridge’

  • Also comes in a Bantam size.

Current Use/Purpose

The Wyandotte is considered a dual purpose breed, because of its heavy weight and also productive egg laying ability.

silver-laced-wyandotte-sitting

Personality and Temperament

Wyandotte chickens are docile and friendly birds that make great backyard chickens. They love to free range and forage in an open area, however can tolerate confinement - so a mix of both run enclosure time and backyard roaming time will keep them satisfied and thriving in their environment.

Incubating and Hatching

Wyandotte chickens are known for having strong broody tendencies, and being reliable sitters on fertile eggs. Also, they make great mothers that will lovingly tend to their baby chicks with ease.

Egg Behaviour

Wyandotte chickens are decent egg layers, laying approximately 200 large brown eggs each year. What’s even better is that they generally lay through the winter months as well as summer, whereas other breeds tend to cease egg production.

Appearance

The Wyandotte is a heavy, sturdy looking breed (hence why its a popular dual purpose breed), weighing in at 2.7-3.8kgs.

The Wyandotte comes in a wide range of beautiful colour varieties (recognised by various Standard Associations across the world) that were developed as it spread across America - from Columbian, to Buff, to Partridge...the list goes on! They also have bright red combs and pale coloured legs. The laced varieties are particularly striking, and some of the most popular variations of the region.

Care

Wyandottes are generally quite self sufficient birds. Their particularly feathery and fluffy behind can be a problem, as droppings occasionally causes a mess - so if this becomes a problem, a quick trim of the feathers should fix it right up.

Fresh water and nutritious feed should always be available to them, as should a safe and secure chicken coop where they can roost and lay their eggs.

silver-laced-wyandotte-eating

Health Issues

Wyandottes don’t have any health issues particular to their breed, and their health should be treated as well as any average chicken. Regular worming is great for keeping parasites at bay, as well as vaccinations if necessary.

Hardiness

The Wyandotte is egg-ceptionally hardy in cold winter conditions. This is due to their heavy weight and feathering. Therefore, you shouldn’t have too much of a problem if it gets a bit nippy! As long as they have a well ventilated coop to shelter in, your flock will be comfortable and happy.

Why We Love Them!

Wyandottes are spectacular, hardy birds that supply us with great backyard companionship and fresh eggs all year round. There are so many colour varieties to choose from, and all are visually striking - we wish we could have one of every colour!

Sources and further reading




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