Last Updated on April 26, 2022 by Pauline G. Carter
Houdan Chickens are French breed chickens, being named after the French city, Houdan, about 100 miles away from Paris. The city of Houdan was always associated with producing poultry and supplying Paris with its eggs and meat.
The Houdan was once known as the Normandy Fowl. It is thought that this breed dates back to ancient Roman times, between AD7-AD40. They were imported to the UK somewhere during the 1850s and introduced to the USA in 1867.
It arrived also in North American around 1865. In France, these birds were highly valued for their fleshy white meat and their large eggs. Today they are considered more ornamental chicken breeds. The Houdan appeared in the American Standard of Perfection (first edition) in 1874.
Houdan Chicken | Breed Profile
|Country of origin:||France|
|Primary use:||Dual-purpose meat/eggs|
|Weight:||Male: Standard: 2.5–3 kgBantam: 900 g|
Female: Standard: 2–2.5 kgBantam: 800 g
|Temperament:||Sweet, Easily handled|
|Recognized Varieties:||Mottled, White|
|Egg production (annual):||150|
|Comb type:||Shaped like a butterfly or oak-leaf|
Characteristics Of The Houdan Chicken
These birds have crests with V-shaped combs. They have 5 toes. Because of the fifth toe, baby chick Houdans look like they walk with a kind of skipping gait. The cocks can weigh up to around 8 lbs and he hens to about 6½ lbs.
Cockerels weigh around 7 lbs and pullets around 5½ lbs. They make excellent table birds. They are calm, placid and gentle but still bold and active tending towards broodiness.
They don’t really make good sitters on their eggs, because of their heaviness; sometimes they break their eggs. Their heads are large and crested. They have short beaks with small and round earlobes and wattles.
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The earlobes are white whilst the wattles and comb are red. They have mottled-black legs with no feathers. Their eyes are the color of reddish-by and beak, toes and shanks a pinkish-white color. Their plumage is a standard white color.
The Houdan breed only has a few varieties. These are white, lavender and black-mottled Houdan chicken.
The Houdans enjoy interacting with humans. If you handle them with care and calmly, from a very young, they make tame pets. However, their large crest limits their eyesight a bit, causing them to be a bit flighty.
They can reach up to 8 years. As an excellent meat product as well, it has been served at tables of aristocracy, called the “queen of birds” and also “bird of kings” for the firm and flavorsome meat.
The Houdan will withstand confinement, but you will find that they love to free-range, obtaining a lot of their nutritional needs just by being allowed to roam.
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What we like and what we don’t like about the Houdan Chicken:
We Don’t Like
Is The Houdan Chicken A Good Choice For You?
- The Houdan chickens need dry, spacious and safe runs where they can forage.
- They have vision-limiting crests which make them an easier target than others for predators.
- They love to eat their grains and love to gather their own food, foraging around for nutrients. Breeders need to take note that feeding and water containers need to be designed in such a way as to keep the crest of the bird dry and clean.
- These birds lay their eggs well, even into their old age. If their food is supplemented well with extra protein and calcium, the egg production can be excellent, around 150 eggs a year. The Houdan chicken hardly ever hatches its eggs. You would need to use an incubator to do this, or a surrogate sitter. Houdan chicken for sale is better hatched in the warmer months to take advantage of the warmth.
- All around, Houdan chickens make a good choice for small farmers.
Houdan Chicken Care Guide
Houdan chickens are relatively low-maintenance birds that are easy to care for. They require more space than other chicken breeds due to their long tails, but otherwise, they are not particularly needy. Houdans are good layers of brown eggs and typically lay around 150 per year. They are also known for being good foragers so they can be a great addition to any homestead or backyard flock.
Houdan chickens do best in a spacious coop with plenty of room to move around when it comes to housing. They are not particularly shy birds and do well when housed with other chicken breeds. However, they have long tails that can get caught in tight spaces, so it’s important to provide them plenty of room to move. Houdan chicken also like to roost, so include some roosting bars in their coop.
Houdans are not particularly picky eaters in terms of diet and will enjoy the same type of food as other chicken breeds. A good quality chicken feed should provide them with all the nutrients they need. They may also enjoy foraging for insects and other small critters.
When it comes to caring, Houdans are relatively low-maintenance birds that are easy to take care of. They require more space than other chicken breeds due to their long tails, but otherwise, they are not particularly needy. Houdans are good layers of brown eggs and typically lay around 150 per year. They are also known for being good foragers so they can be a great addition to any homestead or backyard flock.
Houdan chicken care is relatively straightforward. These birds do not require any special care beyond what is needed for other chicken breeds. However, there are a few things to keep in mind when caring for Houdans.
First, because of their long tails, Houdans require more space than other chicken breeds. Therefore, they should be provided with a spacious coop with plenty of room to move around. Additionally, roosting bars should be included in their coop to give them a place to perch.
Second, Houdans are known for being good foragers. They can be a great addition to any homestead or backyard flock and will help clear areas of brush and weeds. However, they may also eat small critters, so it is important to watch them if they are allowed to free-range.
Finally, Houdans are good layers of brown eggs and typically lay around 150 per year. Therefore, they do not require special care for their diet and can eat the same food as other chicken breeds.
Overall, Houdans are relatively low-maintenance birds that are easy to take care of. They will thrive in any backyard flock with a little bit of extra space and some good quality chicken feed.
FAQ: Houdan Chicken
What are Houdan chickens good for?
Houdan chickens are good for a variety of things, including providing eggs, meat, and feathers. They are also known for being good at foraging and can be used to help clear areas of brush and weeds. Additionally, Houdans are often used in shows and competitions due to their unique appearance.
Are Houdan chickens cold hardy?
Houdan chickens are fairly cold hardy, but they require some protection from the elements if the temperature drops too low. They can be kept in a coop with other chicken breeds but should have access to a warm area to retreat to if necessary.
How long do Houdan chickens live?
The average lifespan of a Houdan chicken is around 8-10 years, although some may live longer if well cared for.
What do Houdan chickens eat?
Houdan chickens are not particularly picky and will generally eat the same things as other chicken breeds. A good quality chicken feed should provide them with all the nutrients they need. They may also enjoy foraging for insects and other small critters.
What is the difference between a Houdan chicken and a Standard chicken?
The main difference between a Houdan chicken and a standard chicken is their appearance. Houdans have more feathers on their feet and head, giving them a unique look. They are also usually smaller than standard chickens. Additionally, Houdans are known for being good foragers and can be used to help clear areas of brush and weeds.
What is the difference between Houdan and Polish chicken?
The main difference between a Houdan and a Polish chicken is their appearance. Houdans have more feathers on their feet and head, giving them a unique look. They are also usually smaller than Polish chickens. Additionally, Houdans are known for being good foragers and can be used to help clear areas of brush and weeds.
Final Verdict: Houdan Chicken
Houdan chickens are a great addition to any backyard flock. They are easy to take care of and provide a good source of eggs. Additionally, they are known for being good foragers and can help clear areas of brush and weeds. Houdans make a great addition to any homestead or farm if you have the space for them.