Chicken breeds with feathered feet are chickens that have feet covered with long plumage. They can be divided into various breeds depending on their characteristics, egg production, or size.
This article consists of the 11 best chicken breeds with feathered feet which are most demanded by chicken breeders worldwide.
Best 11 Chicken Breeds with Feathered Feet (Characteristics, Egg Production, Size, and Pictures)
- 1 Best 11 Chicken Breeds with Feathered Feet (Characteristics, Egg Production, Size, and Pictures)
- 2 Reasons Behind Chickens Have Feathered Feet
- 3 Problems With Feathered Feet in Chickens
- 4 How To Deal with Feathers on Chicken Feet?
- 5 Bottom Line
Here is the list of few popular chicken breeds with feathered feet:
1. Croad Langshan
Croad Langsha chicken breed originated from China. The chicken is large, black chicken with feathered feet.
The Croad Langshan is a good layer of heavy brown eggs, and they lay about 150 eggs per year. The chicken can be used as meat chicken because they have a well-muscled body.
A full-grown hen weighs around 8 pounds and 11 pounds for rooster chicken.
Croad Langshan chicken breeds with feathered feet are hardy in winter but have poor tolerance to heat and humidity conditions.
2. Booted Bantam
The chicken is small and has feathered legs and feet but no feathers on the shanks or toes.
Bantam chicken breeds with feathered feet are good layers of tiny eggs with tinted shell color. They lay about six eggs per week.
Booted Bantams are friendly chicken breeds that are easy to tame if appropriately handled as young chicks.
They can be very aggressive towards people and other chicken breeds during mating seasons or sometimes throughout the year after reaching the age of 1-3 years old.
The Booted bantam chicken breed’s weight varies from 1.25 lbs for hens to 2 lbs
The Booted bantam chicken’s lifespan is about 4-8 years.
3. Belgian d’Uccle
Belgian d’Uccles are the oldest chicken breeds with feathered feet in Belgium, dating back to 1835.
They have a large chicken body structure with long legs but no feathers on them, which makes their legs appear short and fat looking despite the length of their legs.
The average weight of roosters is about 1.65 lbs and hens is about 1.35 gm. Just like other chicken breeds with feathered feet, Belgian d’Uccles are excellent layers who lay brown eggs.
Each hen can produce about 90 eggs per year. They can live for a maximum of 8 years.
Belgian d’Uccle chicken breeds with feathered feet are not broody chicken. They tend to fuss a lot and jump onto their chicken coop’s roof if someone or something has upset them.
The color of the French Maran chicken breed varies from black, red, golden, silver, and white chicken with many different feather patterns throughout its chicken body, which makes it one of the most beautiful chicken breeds.
The chicken is good for looks and has other great qualities that make it an excellent choice for meat production. They have a large and robust chicken body structure despite being a bantam fowl chicken.
French Marans have serious attitude problems, so you should keep them away from other chicken breeds in a separate chicken pen. They may attack and kill the chicken of different breeds who come near their pen.
Marans lay small to medium-sized brown eggs, which are more nutritious than the chicken’s white egg, and they tend to be poor layers during winter seasons.
The chicken is very friendly and easy to tame if appropriately handled when they are baby chicks. It’s not recommended for someone who doesn’t know how to handle chicken well.
Their lifespan is around 5-8 years, depending upon the treatment provided by the owner, as healthy chickens with good care live longer than those living in miserable conditions.
French Maran chicken standard rooster weights about 7.5 lbs and hens 4.25 lbs for a bantam male fowl the weigh is about 2.25 lbs & 1.75 lbs for female bantam.
Brahma chicken breed is the heaviest chicken globally and one of the giant chicken breeds with feathered feet, weighing between 4.5-5.5 kgs when fully grown.
They have full body feather coverage except for their legs & feet, so they are less vulnerable to cold weather than other chicken breeds with feathered feet.
They have a friendly personality that makes them easy to tame if appropriately handled as young chicks. Their vast body structure makes it difficult to escape from predators or walk around in a portable chicken coop.
It’s recommended not to keep them together with other chicken breeds unless you have a chicken farm with chicken pens five times larger than standard chicken coops.
Brahma chicken breed lays eggs that weigh more compared to other chicken breeds.
Even though they lay huge eggs, their production rate is only around 150-200 eggs per year on average, and some hens stop laying eggs entirely at a very young age of 1 year old.
Their lifespan is between 4-8 years, depending upon the treatment provided by the owner.
Cochin chicken breeds with feathered feet are very friendly and easy to tame if appropriately handled when young chicks of around one month.
They tend to get sick quite often. You should not keep the breed together with other chicken breeds unless you have a chicken farm or large chicken coop that can accommodate such types of chicken breeds that frequently get sick because of the possibility of spreading diseases.
Cochins don’t show any warning signs before falling ill. They might even die within few hours after showing symptoms of sickness, especially coccidiosis which is one of the most common chicken diseases and mainly occurs in chicken breeds with feathered feet.
They lay chicken eggs that weigh. Even though they lay huge chicken eggs, their production rate is only around 100-150 eggs per year on average, and some hens stop laying eggs entirely at a very young age.
Their lifespan is between 8-10 years. The bantam fowl weighs about 2 kg, and the large chicken weighs about 5 kg (9 lbs.).
You should handle chicken breeds with feathered feet carefully as they are not as hardy as chicken breeds with no feathers. Their chicken feather coverage can’t protect them from the cold weather.
Faverolle chicken breed produces around 200-250 chicken eggs per year on average. Their chicken eggshells color is either pure white or tinted creamy yellow depending upon the type of chicken species.
The weight of a large chicken is between 6 lbs-8.5 lbs. Their lifespan is around 4-8 years depending upon the care provided by owners.
Silkie chicken breed has unique physical characteristics that make it visually different than other chicken breeds, including black and white coat color pattern, which gives an appearance of fur rather than chicken feathers.
The Silkie chicken breed has feather coverage only on the bottom part of their chicken feet. They are pretty different than chicken breeds with complete chicken foot feathering.
Silkie chicken require more care and protection against cold weather and predators because of their weak legs that can’t support large body structures.
They have long neck feathers covering most parts of their legs to protect them from freezing in winter.
The chicken breed produces around 150-200 chicken eggs per year on average, and their eggshells’ color is white or tinted creamy yellow, depending upon the type of chicken species.
Their lifespan is between 8-9 years which makes them one of the longest life chicken breeds. The Silkie chicken weighs about 1.25-1.5 kgs.
9. Pekin Chicken
The Pekin chicken breed is also called as Long Island chicken breed. It originates in China, where chicken breeds were selectively bred for their chicken meat production potential over many years.
Even though they are not suitable for chicken egg production, they are outstanding chicken meat producers compared to other chicken breeds because of their large size.
Pekin chicken weight ranges between 550 grams for female fowl and 680 grams for male chicken. Their lifespan is around 6-8 years depending upon the care provided by owners.
10. Sultan Chickens
Sultan chicken breed is a trendy chicken breed among chicken hobbyists and backyard chicken farmers around the world.
They are large chicken breeds with rich feather coverage that protects them from extreme cold weather or hot temperatures and chicken predators.
They produce around 200 chicken eggs per year on average, which is less than other chicken breeds with feathered feet. Their eggshells’ color is white or tinted creamy yellow, depending upon the type of chicken species.
The bantam fowl weighs about 650-750 gms and 1.8-2.75 kg for large chicken. Their lifespan is between 4-6 years, but they tend to show aging prematurely after six years.
The Malaysian Serama chicken breed is not as good as chicken meat breeds, but they produce more chicken eggs per year on average.
Their eggshell color is either pure white or tinted creamy yellow, depending upon the type of chicken species.
They can be considered one of the best chicken breeds with feathered feet because they have all the chicken feathers covering the bottom of their chicken legs.
Even though they don’t have leg protection against cold during winter days, they are still quite good chicken breeds to consider raising in your backyard to enjoy both eggs throughout their lifetime.
Their lifespan is around 7-8 years depending upon the care provided by owners. They produce about 180-200 chicken eggs per year on average. The chicken weighs between 0.5-1.1 kgs.
Reasons Behind Chickens Have Feathered Feet
Here are some common reasons behind the feathered feet in chickens-
1. Cold climate
The breed was developed in China and Turkey (both countries have a cold climate).
So, breeds were developed with fully feathered feet to survive better in the freezing temperatures because of their excellent hair coat, providing extra protection from rain and snow melting.
Breeds are reared now throughout the world due to their unique appearance. They have fully feathered legs, hardness, a large body size, and a pea comb on top of the breeds’ head.
This makes it difficult for predators to catch species by their comb. Large body sizes can fight with the predators having a formidable beak.
3. Heat Production
In origin, the breed was developed in China and Turkey (both countries have a cold climate), so breeds were developed with fully feathered feet to produce more body heat by trapping the heat produced by its leg’s muscles.
4. Better insulation reason
Feathers on chickens’ legs help trap air bubbles next to the chicken’s skin like an insulation material.
So it helps them better during winter seasons when there is less amount of exposed skin for production of body heat by chickens.
Problems With Feathered Feet in Chickens
Few major problems with feathered feet in
It is challenging and time-consuming to clean chickens’ leg feathers because the length of chickens’ feathers on legs can reach up to half a foot long, making it difficult for them to walk.
2. Sickness problem
It takes time for chickens having fully feathered legs to dry off until the next rainstorm comes along.
Water gathers in between feathers, making it easy for bacteria, fungi, or parasites to grow in wet areas, so chickens become more susceptible to sickness.
Read our detailed article on chicken dewormer.
How To Deal with Feathers on Chicken Feet?
Below you will read few tips to deal with feathers on chicken feet-
- Clip all the feathers around chickens’ back and neck areas for easy access while cleaning or removing mites/parasites.
- Keep them clean by removing grasses, leaves, and other debris caught in between feathers which can lead to skin injuries because it is difficult for birds having fully feathered legs to move during spring seasons when mud becomes deep due to recent thaws.
- Provide some soft material for chickens to step on after their release from the coop where the flooring should be made of rubber or other materials that don’t create injuries for chickens’ feet while walking.
- Although breeds with fully feathered legs get dirty more often, it is recommended to maintain a high level of hygiene by washing this breed’s legs and toes from time to time which is always better for preventing diseases.
Chicken breeds with feathered chicken legs are less likely to suffer chicken leg problems than chicken breeds without chicken foot feathering.
Regular trimming of chicken feathers around the chicken feet is a must for chicken owners if they don’t want their chickens with feathered chicken legs to get injured from sharp rocks, thorns, trees, and other objects in the surroundings.
Also, the remarkable thing about chicken breeds with feathered feet is they can stay cool during summer days when you have hot weather conditions.