- Breed Purpose:
- Climate Tolerance:
- All Climates
- Egg Productivity:
- Egg Size:
- Egg Color:
- Breed Temperament:
- Friendly, Do not bear confinement well
- Breed Colors/Varieties:
- Silver Spangled/Silver Crescent, Golden Spangled and Blacks are found in the UK and USA. Light/soft feathered.
- Breed Size:
- Large Fowl
With their characteristic forward sweeping crest, the Appenzeller Spitzhauben is an unusual looking bird. The breed originated in the Appenzell canton of northeast Switzerland and seem to date as far back as the 16th century, where similar birds are described as being developed in the local monasteries. Switzerland considers the Appenzeller Spitzhauben to be the national chicken of their country and the breed takes their name from the ceremonial hats worn by woman of the region, called Spitzhauben (pointed hood) which are reminiscent of the breeds large forward sweeping crest.
The breed fell into disfavor after WWII and was at the brink of extinction when a German breeder, Kurt Fischer, imported all three of the original colors (black, golden spangled and silver spangled) into Germany in 1953, he is credited with saving the breed. The silver spangled version was also imported in to the US in the 1950’s, and it is the primary color found in the US today. The breed is not currently recognized by the APA, but is in the UK.
Besides the characteristic crest, Appenzeller Spitzhauben have "V" combs, blue legs, and white skin. They are rather small birds, are very active and alert,and are good flyers and foragers. They do not take well to close confinement. They are cold hardy, and though they are primarily an ornamental breed today, the hens are good layers of medium-large sized eggs and are non-setters.
Appenzeller Spitzhauben egg
Appenzeller Spitzhauben chicks
Appenzeller Spitzhauben juvenile
Appenzeller Spitzhauben hen
Appenzeller Spitzhauben rooster
For more information on this breed and their owners' and breeders' experiences with them, see our breed discussion here: https://www.backyardchickens.com/threads/chicken-breed-focus-appenzeller-spitzhauben.1013428/