In 1870, the German J. Meyer in the Bavarian town of Augsberg developed an extraordinary breed of chickens with a unique, butterfly-shaped scallop. He wanted to produce an incredibly productive chicken with a dual purpose - for meat and eggs.
Poultry breeders of that time really liked the result of his work, although the association did not approve it - the Augsburg breed of chickens did not pass standardization and was not recognized for the reason that the offspring did not inherit some external characteristics, including the beautiful comb.
Advantages and disadvantages
Among the advantages of isolated productivity in combination with rapid growth and ease of care. It is impossible not to draw attention to another advantage - the ability to independently engage in the young and the highly developed instinct of hatching. Among the drawbacks, the most significant is the rarity and difficulty of acquiring representatives of this species.
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A bit of history
The Hamburg breed of chickens was bred by German specialists seeking to create the perfect bird, which would show excellent productivity and could easily adapt to difficult climatic conditions. Thus, lunar Talakshir, Pheasant Yorkshire and Spanish chickens were taken for crossing. The first mentions of the breed date back to 1740, but it gained worldwide fame much later.
General information about the breed
Hamburg chickens, photos of which look very attractive, have a slightly oblong body of medium size. The chest is slightly raised, which gives the silhouette a certain grandeur, and the head tilted slightly down. Despite the small size of the body, the legs are quite strong. It is possible to distinguish these chickens from representatives of other breeds with similar traits by a very lush and long tail.
Characteristic features of the Hamburg breed are:
- small neck of small length
- the comb in its shape resembles a rose, which is different in size for roosters and hens,
- short, slightly rounded beak,
- brown eyes with a red tint
- massive wings on a large scale.
The external signs listed above are typical for all individuals of this breed, so if you notice any differences, this indicates that the chicken belongs to another species of bird.
Plumage and color
Hamburger hens, the standard of which is determined by many factors, have very dense and dense plumage, reliably protecting birds from the cold. Most individuals have a head, neck, and tips of their wings in white, and their bodies are variegated. However, it is worth noting that, depending on the type of breed, there are certain differences in the coloration of chickens.
Common traits with other breeds
Hamburg chickens have much in common with representatives of some other breeds. For example, with their simplicity and endurance they resemble chintz Leningrad chicken, and in size and egg production - Russian white. With regard to external signs and color, then this breed is very similar to leggorn veandot, which is known worldwide for its highest productivity.
Efficiency and egg production
Adult Hamburg dwarf chickens grow to two and a half pounds, and the weight of roosters can reach 3 kg. As for egg production, chickens start laying eggs as early as four months, bringing 195 eggs a year, each weighing an average of 55 grams. In some cases, with proper care and proper diet, productivity can be higher.
What is needed to increase egg production?
According to experienced farmers, if you adhere to certain rules and recommendations for the care and breeding of this breed of chickens, you can achieve a higher egg production rate.
In order for one bird to carry 220 eggs each year, do the following:
- every spring should reduce the duration of daylight, and in the fall - to increase,
- the bird should be let out in the summer at 5 am,
- in winter, chickens should be let outside if the air temperature is no more than 15 degrees below zero,
- in winter, the air temperature should be maintained at a level of 10-12 degrees, which are considered ideal for this breed.
It is important to understand that the highest egg production continues during the first year of life, after which it gradually decreases with each passing year.
Breeding Hamburg chickens: recommendations for care
The Hamburg breed of chickens, the description of which was given above, is bred not only for the purpose of producing eggs, but also for producing meat. Many farmers choose this breed due to the fact that chickens grow very quickly and, with proper care, just after a few months after hatching begin to nest.
In order for chickens to be healthy and maintain their attractive appearance, it is necessary to create optimal conditions for them:
- the coop should be clean, dry and warm
- the room should be equipped with ventilation, lighting and perches of sufficient size,
- so that the bird does not hurt, you should periodically change the litter,
- regardless of the time of year, chickens should be let out for free range. In the cold months, its duration should be no more than three hours, and in the summer it is better to produce for the whole day, while ensuring free access to the chicken coop.
Failure to follow these simple recommendations can not only lead to a significant decrease in productivity, but also to the development of various diseases that can cause a complete extinction of the livestock.
What is better to feed?
Hamburg chickens should be fed three times a day. One individual requires one hundred grams of feed to fully saturate. As for the diet, the best solution would be to use cereals mixed with soft food. In addition, the bird should constantly receive vitamins and minerals, so it is necessary to give specialized supplements along with the feed. It is important to understand that representatives of the Hamburg breed very quickly gain weight, so they are not recommended to overfeed, as this has a negative impact on productivity.
Hamburg breed of chickens: advantages and disadvantages
Hamburg chickens are distinguished by their unpretentious content and diet, as well as high productivity, which is their main advantages.
In addition to the pluses also include:
- small size and low feed intake,
- high chick survival rate
- rapid onset of egg production,
- high resistance to various diseases
- quiet, calm and peaceful nature of the bird,
- attractive appearance of chickens, so they will be a great decoration of the yard.
The main disadvantage of this breed is that chickens do not hatch eggs, as well as the rapid cessation of the productive period.
What do farmers say about Hamburg chickens?
If you decide to farm and want to start with chickens, the Hamburg breed is best suited for this. It is very popular among many farmers all over the world and has gathered quite a lot of positive reviews.
The overwhelming majority of people who breed and raise Hamburg chickens note their high productivity, unpretentiousness and high resistance to severe climatic conditions. However, if your region has very severe winters, then the chicken coop must necessarily be insulated and equipped with the heating system necessary to maintain the optimum air temperature in the house.
After the egg production of chickens significantly reduced, they can be put on the meat, which is of good quality and excellent taste. However, with proper care and use of high-quality feed, chickens will provide you with eggs for a fairly long period of time. The most important thing is not to forget about the proper diet and proper care for poultry, and then a good result is guaranteed.
The history of this breed is interesting. Chicken with an unusual scallop brought in 1870 by the German breeder Meyer from the Bavarian city of Augsburg. For breeding Augsburg chickens were used Italian breed Lamotte and French la flush. However, at the state level, the Augsburgers were not recognized as a breed, since their offspring did not always inherit the features of the parents. Nevertheless, these chickens were bred in German farms, and after World War II, the standard of augsburgers was officially approved.
Appearance and physique
The constitution of augsburgers is harmonious, the body is raised. The roosters have developed muscles, the chickens have a stomach, the breast of both sexes is bulging, the neck is long, and the eyes are brown. On the head there is a characteristic double red scallop, which with some imagination can be represented by butterfly wings or a crown. In roosters, this feature is more pronounced. There are also white lobes and red earrings. The bird's color is black with a bluish edging, the limbs are gray, the shin is well developed.
The dominant traits of augsburgers are the lack of aggressiveness, livability with other poultry and consistently calm behavior. In addition, these chickens are not afraid of people and do not differ excessive curiosity.
As for the productivity of the breed, it differs quite high rates, namely:
- Rooster weight reaches 3 kg,
- chicken weight - up to 2.5 kg,
- the chickens start rushing from the 6th to the 7th month of life,
- standard egg production is 230 eggs per year,
- egg weight is on average 60 grams,
- the shell is white.
What to feed
The diet of augsburgers is standard for hens of the egg-and-meat type, some special foods or a special diet for them is not required.
Feeding chickens has this sequence:
- Freshly hatched chickens are fed with crushed yolk of boiled chicken eggs.
- The very next day, you can add high-quality cottage cheese and millet to your diet.
- Subsequently, finely chopped greens are added, and grated vegetables, such as beetroot, cucumber, zucchini and pumpkin, are gradually mixed into the feed.
In the first week they feed often, the optimal amount of feed is six times a day. Then the frequency of feeding is gradually reduced.
To ensure the best egg production in laying hens, it is better to feed with specialized compound feeds. But generally this breed powerless, grain mixtures, for example, wheat, barley, oats and corn in equal proportions, will also work perfectly. Freshly mowed grass should be added to the feed; in winter it is replaced with hay. In addition, in small amounts (no more than 5% by weight of the feed) meat and bone meal or fish meal, as well as chalk (no more than 3%) are mixed into the feed.
If necessary (for example, if there is no green in the diet), vitamin or mineral supplements are added to the feed. If there is no free range of birds, then the feeder should add gravel (10-15 g per individual per week) - it contributes to the grinding of food in the chicken's stomach and ultimately normal metabolism.
In the chicken coop with walking
Harsh conditions do not like the Augsburgers. The coop must be equipped according to following rules:
- For keeping this breed in a room, low perches are set up (about 50 cm from the floor), at the rate of three hens per meter of roost.
- There should be no drafts in the hen house, it should be warmed, equipped with ventilation, and provided with a water bowl and a feeding trough.
- Nests equip one nest for six layers.
- There must be a litter on the floor.
- In winter, it is necessary to maintain the temperature in the room not lower than +5 ° С, therefore, in areas with cold climates, heating may be required.
Advantages and disadvantages of the breed
Of merits Augsburg chickens include the following:
- good, though not record egg production,
- undemanding to conditions of detention
- well-developed instinct nasizhivaniya
- calm character
- spectacular appearance.
Any pronounced deficiencies this breed does not. It can be called perhaps the need to organize walking for the birds and the problems with the acquisition of eggs for incubation or chickens in our area. As we see, Augsburgers with their rather unusual appearance are unpretentious birds, their content does not present any difficulties. At the same time, they are characterized by good productivity and calm character. So if such a bird is found on sale, it makes sense to experiment with its content.
Beauty and unpretentiousness
They are classified as decorative. They are small but hardy, have excellent health and are renowned for their productivity. But the most important advantage of Hamburg chickens - unpretentiousness and excellent adaptability to practical conditions for any content.
Hamburg chickens adapt well to any conditions
The ancestors of the "Hamburg" in Holland back in 1740. But the genus was far from perfect, the current form and modern characteristics. From the Netherlands, birds were sent to the port of Hamburg. Breed interested German poultry farmers. This cross (the so-called line of chickens, which were bred specifically for certain properties inherent only to them), which is now known as Hamburg chickens, was obtained by cross-breeding by crossing the Cochinchins with Ramelsloerami, diluted with Lunar Talakshirsky, Black Spanish and Fasanov Yorkshire breeds.
Cochinquin - one of the ancestors of the Hamburg hens
In addition to the attractive, neat appearance, compactness and unpretentiousness, it is impossible not to note the main characteristics, for the sake of which representatives of this breed are grown on farms. Birds are decorative and sporty and have a high egg production rate.
- This genotype is distinguished by medium build.
Hamburg chickens have a rather small build
Hamburg chickens have an attractive appearance.
Hamburg chickens can be monochromatic or variegated feather colors, as well as be striped, speckled and in other fashionable “prints”.
Hamburg cock striped
The following colors are standards:
- monotonous black - all feathers on the body,
- white and silver - all feathers on the body,
- black undercoat, white feather base, black dotted dots on it,
- light gray underlays, white main feather mass, black stripes on it,
- brown-gold base, black dotted spots on it, completely black tail,
- brown gold base, black streaks on it.
Hamburg cock monotone black color
By the way! Females fled quickly, feather coating occurs in them quite early. In males, this process takes more time, so it is possible to determine the purity of the breed by color earlier in chickens than in roosters.
All of the above characteristics also apply to the dwarf bird species of this breed. Standards and colors are the same, only size and weight will be different. If a large representative of the species weighs 2.5 kg and the chicken weighs 2 kg, then the dwarf will weigh 700 and 600 g, respectively.
Hamburg dwarf chicken
Unacceptable deficiencies, with the presence of which the representative of the breed is culling:
- wings hanging down and not pressed to the body,
- tail sticking out like a fan
- large body
- short or too long legs.
Sticking tail can cause culling
Difference from other breeds
Hamburg chickens are easy to breed at home, on farms and farmsteads, household farms and suburban areas.
- If you compare them with other breeds, immediately in the plus you can put unpretentiousness and good adaptability to different climatic conditions and its dramatic changes.
- But chickens are characterized by average survival. In young stock, it is 85%. Therefore, at the initial stage of growth it is necessary to create comfortable conditions for the chicks.
- Also undoubted merit of selection is the ability of chickens "Hamburg" to the early onset of the egg-laying period. It starts at 4.5 months in layers.
- Finally, it is one of the rare aviary breeds that also feels good when it is kept on the floor.
Hamburg chickens feel good and with outdoor maintenance
In spite of the fact that the breed can live even in regions with a harsh climate, it’s necessary to prepare before starting a “Hamburg”.
The fact is that chickens of this species do not sit on eggs. That is, do not brood chicks at all. This is probably the price of beauty and high decoration. If you are going to breed yourself from eggs, you will need an incubator. Если купите суточных птенцов, помните, что при выживаемости до 85% часть их может погибнуть даже при отличном уходе.
Для разведения гамбургских кур вам потребуется инкубатор
Инкубаторы для яиц
Tip! An ideal place for keeping Hamburg chickens is a spacious aviary, which passes into the poultry house, where egg nesting sites and perches are provided. Communication between these two parts should be free.
Spacious aviary with free access to the house
Having chosen this breed for mass breeding, it is necessary to prepare before you start purchasing young stock and start growing.
The first thing to take care of is the room. This should be a chicken house (a chicken coop, any autonomous utility room or a separate building in which the aviary is located. They begin preparation three days before the chickens are settled.
You need a room to keep chickens.
Step 5 - Bedding
Poured directly on a layer of lime. It may consist of large sawdust, wood chips or wood chips.
Important! Representatives of the breed feel good in almost any conditions, but their productivity can be significantly increased by placing no more than 15 heads on one square meter.
Features of the initial stage of content
You can purchase a plant from the age of one day. It is optimal (financial) to start breeding from the age of chicks in the range of 1-5 days, but not older than five. At an early age, the chicks are rather susceptible to temperatures and humidity, but later on these figures will not be decisive for the Hamburg breed. At first, care must be taken to ensure that the air temperature in the maintenance room is within + 32 ° C and the humidity does not rise above 70%.
On the sixth day, the temperature index decreases by two degrees, the humidity remains unchanged.
Then every five to seven days in the house should be two degrees less, with a slight decrease in humidity - in general, five weeks gradually by 5-10%. Humidity (unless it is elevated) is not a critical indicator. The temperature should in no case fall below + 18 ° C, otherwise the chickens will lose their appetite, the growth will noticeably slow down and the overall development will slow down.
The temperature in the house should be above + 18 ° C