The Crested Cream legbar is a good breed to keep. These social critters will do well in confinement and when left to range on their own.
In the last one decade, the poultry industry has seen a number of changes. New breeds have come in as a result of cross breeding and advancement in technology.
So, in this article, I am going to take your through the history of Cream legbars, characteristics, egg laying, uses and much more.
History of the Cream legbar
The Cream legbar chicken breed traces its ancestry in England. Here, farmers wanted a bird that could be easy to sex right at hatching.
This gave researchers and chicken hobbyists sleepless nights to seal the gap. At the time, the only chickens farmers had were not easy to sex and this saw them raise the gender they opted to cull.
However, the desire to have a sexlink chicken breed endemic to England could not last long. In the early 20th century at the Genetical Institute of Cambridge University, the legbar was created.
Two poultry researchers namely Reginald Crundall Punnet and Michael Pease were responsible. This was after they had crossed the gold legbars with the cream-colored Araucanas.
The blue egg genes in the Araucanas become dominant in these birds and that’s the reason they are blue egg layers.
Although some cream legbar hens will lay white or olive eggs, most of them are known to lay a blu egg. Cream legbars are very rare in the United States and also in Britain where they have been listed on the watch list.
They are yet to be recognized by the American Poultry Association. In their country of origin England, they are treated by the Poultry Club of Great Britain as a color variety.
Characteristics of the Cream legbar chickens
They are medium birds with a triangular shape. Cream legbar rooster weighs 7lbs while the hens weigh 5.5lbs. Bantam legbar roosters weigh 30oz while bantam hens only weigh 22oz.
There are three recognized color varieties which are: Cream, Gold and Silver. The cream birds are different from others because they have a small crest of feathers on their heads.
The crest is not as big as that of Polish chickens and only starts at the back of the comb. This variety is also famous for its blue eggs and in some cases, olive eggs and white eggs are laid.
Legbar roosters are easily noticeable for a barring pattern. Their sweethearts the hens are gowned in a mix of gray shades, tan and black.
The single comb and wattles are red in color while the earlobes are white. Comb will flop on one side in hens while in roosters it is upright with well-marked points on it.
Crested cream legbar chickens have yellow legs that are featherless. On each foot there are four well-spaced toes and short claws.
Eye color is mostly bay but this may vary depending on strain. The beak is short, slightly curved and of horn color.
The wings are medium and closely packed on their bodies. Because of their weight, they will easily fly and jump fences just like Hamburg chickens.
Hardiness and temperament
Cream legbar chickens are very hardy. They will do well in areas where temperatures fall as well as in hot climates.
They are strong, robust and healthy chickens that tolerate confinement as well as free range. When left to roam on the backyard, they lower the cost of feeds by eating grubs, worms as well as weeds.
These chickens can be very notorious and sneak in your vegetable garden if you are not careful. Cream legbar roosters are extremely predator savvy and will always alert the hens when predators are around.
However, notorious predators like hawks and possums are a threat. Make sure their pallet chicken coop is properly latched at night.
If you see paw prints in the snow, be sure there are wolves or possums around. Hawk netting roof for chicken coop is a good way to keep hawks out especially if you have a large chicken run.
Cream legbars are cool, calm and sweet chickens to keep as pets. Although their personalities may differ, they are talkative and do not mind being held.
Cream legbar roosters are not the kind to be trusted with kids. These boys can sometimes turn rowdy and aggressive especially when the mating season is on.
Egg laying and uses
Cream legbar hens are popular for the rare colored chicken eggs they lay. These birds carry the genes of their parent stock the Araucanas who are known for laying blue eggs.
At the age of 5-6months, legbar pullets are seen more often hanging near the nesting boxes. Any time from then the first egg is laid.
Mostly, pullets will begin with a small egg but as the season goes on the size changes. These birds will lay around four medium eggs in a week. The egg shell color is either blue or light blue depending on individual bird.
When well kept, they can give you 230 eggs in a year.
In rare cases, these birds will lay olive green or white eggs. Although the shells are blue, the inside egg is white with a single yellow yoke.
Cream legbars are often reared as pets for their good personalities as well as blue eggs. However, they can offer meat if slaughtered.
The bad side with cream legbars is that they rarely get broody. If you want to hatch your own chicks, an egg hatcher or chickens that get broody easily like Buff Brahmas will do the job for you.
In rare occasions, these chickens get broody and when it happens they make sweet mommas.
Cream legbar chicks and chickens for sale are available in McMurray hatchery. Here they will tell you the price as well as the shipping arrangements.
Integrating Cream legbars
Cream legbar chickens are calm and easily picked by assertive breeds. They rank low on the pecking order and will do well with their kind.
Their crested head skulls are not very strong and a single peck can lead to brain damage.
Cream crested legbar lifespan
Crested cream legbar chickens are members of the jungle fowl family. They have a lifespan of between 3-8 years.
However, their lifespan is not specified because they may die earlier or live for more than 8 years. There are stories of pet chickens like Silkies and Bantam Cochin chicken living for 20 years.
Legbar chickens raised as pets can live for long until they succumb to old age. When raised as pets, they receive the beast care where they are put chicken diapers on and allowed to live with humans.
They are well fed, treated and pampered like toddlers. Roosters are not very lucky because majorities are culled right after sexing.
Why choose cream legbar chickens?
Cream legbar chicken is a good bird to keep for her beautiful blue eggs. They require have low maintenances because they can free range and collect insects and forage.
These critters are very friendly and will not harm your kids. They will offer company and love as well as those tasty eggs for breakfast.
They are extremely hardy and will do well in hot and cold weather. The roosters are predator savvy and will protect the hens, cockerels and chicks from predators.
They are not noisy and can be kept in an urban setting without distracting the neighbors. Excess birds can be sold or butchered for meat.
Cream legbars are robust and healthy birds. They are hardy and do well in both cold and warm climates. However, their single combs are prone to frost bite during winter.
Internal parasites like thread worms and gape worms are another serious threat. These notorious parasites live inside their bodies where they compete for food.
If your legbars are infested, they lose weight, produce poor yields and if this condition persists they might die.
Seek advice from a qualified bird vet near you on the right chicken wormer to administer.
Cream legbar hens vs Roosters
There is a big difference between cream legbar roosters and hens. Looking at them physically you can tell the difference when the birds are mature.
Also, they are easy to sex at hatching. Study the table below to know some of the common differences between the two genders.
|Chicks have a dark back with dark stripes||Light in appearance with a yellow spot on the head|
|They are small and lighter than males||They are big and heavier than the hens|
|Girls start to lay at 5-6 months old||Boys start to crow and mate with hens|
|No spur in hens||Roosters grow long spurs|
|Small combs that flops and wattles||Large upright combs and long wattles|
|They do not crow||Roosters will crow often|
|Female vent has no bump||Male vent is characterized by a vent|
|Short hackle, saddle and tail feathers||Long hackle, saddle and tail feathers|
Cream legbar chickens are good for any beginner who may want to start raising chickens. However be ready to dig deep in your pocket because the chicks are rare hence pricy.
These chooks are friendly and make good pets. They help lower the cost of feeds because they will do well when left to forage.
Legbar hens are faithful layers of blue shelled eggs. The eggs are not only beautiful but are a good source of protein for you and your family.
Roosters and cockerels are a good source of chicken for those who love white meat.
Do you keep Cream legbar chickens? Share your thoughts.
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