Keeping backyard chickens doesn’t just have to be about the delicious eggs. You can actually get involved on the conservation of rare chicken breeds! Some of these breeds are heritage breeds, some of them are plain rare breeds with unique history. Click on their names to check out where to get these unique rare breeds!
This chicken is rare a variation on the popular Buff Orpington. The Orpington itself was classified as “endangered” by the American Livestock Breed Conservancy until recently. One of the reasons why it’s not endangered anymore is because of people like you, keeping this breed as their choice for backyard chickens.
The Lavender variation takes the Orpington to a whole new level. It was just created by the famous breeder Priscilla Middleton in the mid-1990s’! It took her many years of crossing to get this amazing breed in the UK. This breed is still a rare sight in the US.
This beautiful and rare chicken breed is the national breed of Switzerland! The Appenzeller has a rich history going back for centuries. Their unique crest and V comb is reminiscent of the traditional costume bonnets worn by the ladies in the Appenzellerland region, hence their name. This gorgeous breed is mostly used for exhibition although the hens are good egg layers too. They’ll lay around three white eggs for you every week.
The Appenzeller actually faced extinction during the 1950s and if it wasn’t for the German breeder Kurt Fischer we probably wouldn’t be talking about this gorgeous breed today. They’re still very rare in the US and, despite their European heritage, they haven’t been added to the American Standard of Perfection.
You can help this historic breed to never face extinction again!
If you’re looking for a rare breed with an American heritage, the Dominique is an amazing option. They’re considered to be the very first American breed. Just like the Appenzeller, the Dominique also faced extinction during the 50s and they were actually considered to be completely extinct!
Back then people started adopting them, however they’re starting to decline again today. Getting this amazing rare breed is a great way to help ensure the conservation of this American breed!
The Black Sumatra is an extremely intelligent breed, “talking back” to humans just like cats do! They can also produce unique sounds, not found in any other chicken breed. Originally bred for fighting, they’re still considered “undomesticated” and not recommended for the beginner.
Unfortunately, they’re exceedingly rare, probably because of the fact that they’re poor layers and not great for meat either. However they make fierce mothers and very resilient against predators!
One of the rarest and most expensive breeds, the Ayam Cemani is an amazing breed, we even dedicated a whole article to it! If you know anything about them is that they’re all black, from their feathers to their meat to their bones. The Ayam Cemani was even considered mystical powers!
Since the US has a ban in some imports from Indonesia, getting them can be challenging. However our partners at Cackle Hatchery have got you covered! You have to place an order a year in advance for chicks. However, you can also purchase some of their fertile eggs to breed them yourself!
Which was your favorite rare breed? Do you own any of these? Let us know below!