Legbar chickens are the most recent addition to our flock here on Ireland’s Wild Atlantic way.
We call them the Trumps because they not only arrived on Trump’s inauguration day but they also have fluffy hair.
We just got two and apart from an initial skirmish, or two when feeding, they have fitted in fairly well with the other chickens.
However, the ducks are keeping their distance.
Our ducks live with the rest of the chickens in our large coup but have their own little house.
They generally do keep a little distance from the hens but they have given the Legbars an even wider berth – probably because the Legbar chickens tend to flap their wings a lot more.
The Legbars are also flyers and have flown the coup nearly every day since they arrived.
We will probably have to clip the wings for their own good.
WHAT ARE LEGBARS?
Legbar chickens were bred to be autosexing chickens and were created at Cambridge university in England.
The chicks can be sexed by the colour of their down with the male being lighter with a yellow spot on the top of his head with the female having darker stripes.
This ability to tell the sexes apart was useful to commercial breeders as it meant a reduction in feeding costs as breeders knew which chicks would grow to be layers.
We don’t have a cockerel at the moment. We lost two to the fox, so we won’t be testing this theory ourselves but it is interesting.
For us keeping hens is not a business. We enjoy the fresh eggs – the Legbars lay beautiful blue eggs.
But it’s not just the eggs, we love having the hens and ducks around the garden.
It’s not all joy though. When I am gardening they can be a nuisance.
If they are out free ranging they will jump into any freshly dug patch of ground to give themselves a good rub and search for any newly excavated worms.
CREATURES OF HABIT?
I have noticed something strange over our few years of keeping hens and that is the way they keep to the same route.
They then dig their way around to the back and run home across the patio and around the side of the house every evening as the sun goes down.
They never vary their route and any new hens added to the flock, including the two new Legbar chickens, always follow that very same route as well.
Maybe they’re just creatures of habit?
If you know – please leave a comment in the box below. I love to hear from other gardeners and hen-keepers and all advice and comments are welcome.
That’s all for now from Galway.
P.S. There’s lots more about hens, ducks and all things fowl here.