Average User Rating:
  • Breed Purpose:
    Egg Layer
    Climate Tolerance:
    All Climates
    Egg Productivity:
    Egg Size:
    Egg Color:
    Breed Temperament:
    Friendly, Flighty, Bears confinement well, Noisy, Shy
    Breed Colors/Varieties:
    White, light brown, dark brown, black, blue, buff, Columbian, buff Columbian, barred, exchequer and silver
    Breed Size:
    Large Fowl
    APA/ABA Class:

    The Leghorn appears to derive from light breeds originating in rural Tuscany, though the origins are not clear. The name Leghorn was derived from Livorno, the Tuscan port from which the first birds were exported to North America. The date of the first exports is variously reported as 1828, "about 1830" and 1852. They were initially known as "Italians" and they were first referred to as "Leghorns" in 1865.

    The Leghorn was included in the APA's Standard of Perfection in 1874, with three colours: black, white and brown (light and dark). Rose comb light and dark brown were added in 1883, and rose comb white in 1886. Single comb buff and silver followed in 1894, and red, black-tailed red, and Columbian in 1929. In 1981 rose comb black, buff, silver, and golden duckwing were also added.

    The breed was first introduced to Britain from the United States in 1870, and from there re-exported to Italy. White Leghorns that had won first prize at the 1868 New York show were imported to Britain in 1870, and brown Leghorns from 1872. Pyle Leghorns were first bred in Britain in the 1880s; gold and silver duckwings originated there a few years later, from crosses with Phoenix or Japanese Yokohama birds. Buff Leghorns were first seen in Denmark in 1885, and in England in 1888.

    A flighty breed, the Leghorn are popular today for their great egg production and also for exhibition.

    Leghorn eggs

    Leghorn chick

    Leghorn juveniles

    Leghorn hen

    Leghorn rooster

    For more info on Leghorns and their owners' and breeders' experiences, see our breed discussion here:

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  • Chicken Breed Info:
    Breed Purpose:
    Egg Layer
    Comb: Single
    Broodiness: Seldom
    Climate Tolerance: All Climates

    General Egg Info:
    Egg Productivity:
    Egg Size: Large
    Egg Color: White

    Breed Temperament:
    Flighty,Calm,Bears confinement well,Noisy,Shy

    Breed Colors / Varieties:
    white, light brown, dark brown, black, blue, buff, Columbian, buff Columbian, barred, exchequer and silver
    Breed Details:
    I love Leghorns! They are great layers, beautiful birds, and if raised right very friendly. Leghorns are usually very flighty and scared, but when I raised mine from day old chicks they were/are friendly and love to be held. They lay nice tasty, white eggs almost every day, they get along well with other breeds of chickens and they are very funny and full of character.






dmb1994, Longbeard42, nfrede and 4 others like this.

Recent User Reviews

  1. Brahma Chicken5000
    Pros - Great layer of large white eggs, do great in the heat or cold, great feedbto egg conversion, friendly and sweet birds, very alert, bear confinement well
    I had two white Leghorn pullets that were so friendly and curious to the point I could hardly garden with them around because they constantly were in my way looking for worms and bugs. They laid a beautiful large white egg practically every day. They laid through the summer and the winter while skipping a day maybe once every two weeks. I applied Vaseline to their combs and wattles to protect them from frostbite and they did just fine.
  2. G E SMITH
    Pros - Eat a small amount of feed/ lay a egg nearly every day.
    Cons - Very fiesty, not much of a brooder.
    Leghorn or as we call them here in Italy Livornese. Originally bread in the region of Tuscany in or about Livorno a city near Pisa. I have tried several breeds of chickens over the years but when it comes to egg production the white leghorn is a egg laying machine. My birds lay every day with a small pause during molt and if it gets really cold. They are not big eatters and seem to like greens to feed. They are very excitable so go slow in the coop. The rooster is always on alert but not agressive, however if I wear my gray sweat pants he will attack me. I have raised chicks but have had to use my plymouth rock as a brooder.
    Vesperstar84 likes this.
  3. Poetastic
    "Beautiful birds and great layers"
    Pros - Beautiful, great layers, good foragers, curious
    Cons - Flighty, combs prone to frostbite, can be noisy, not easily tamed, roosters generally mean
    I've had brown leghorns for about a year now. I showed them in 4-H and did very well. I raised them from chicks and even while they're young they are definitely a handful. When they begin to learn how to fly, which is early in their lives, they will attempt to escape their enclosure. This a problem for me when they're chicks, but not so much when they're adults. At the moment, I let my leghorns free range just like the rest of my birds. They enjoy foraging, and venture out a bit farther than other birds. My leghorns have plenty of space to roam, which is probably a good idea. Based off my observations, I don't think leghorns would be very good for first time chicken owners or people living in the city, due to their flighty tendencies and love for large spaces. Another thing I've noticed is that their personalities vary. Many of my birds are flighty, some more than others, and a select few are very calm. The ones who are flighty to begin with tend to mellow down a bit once they get used to being around people. Mine lay a lot, but currently aren't laying at all in the winter. Overall, I like leghorns but I probably won't be getting more of them in the future. I'd recommend them to people who have lots of open space available and people who are experienced chicken owners.

User Comments

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  1. DownwardDog
    For those with friendlier Leghorns, are they White or Brown? I'm trying to figure out which to order from Cackle hatchery.
  2. Nutmeg15
    My Leghorns are something else! They are very active and LOVE to wind themselves around my feet when I am out in the run with them. I like to call them my little velociraptors because they remind me of small dinosaurs--very quick and always ready to jump up at me for treats!
      ChristmasRibo likes this.
  3. Pacific Beach Ed
    Would a leghorn rooster be good with a mixed flock of hens? ED
      Thomas Lamprogiorgos likes this.
    1. Thomas Lamprogiorgos
      Excellent choice. The brown ones are the most beautiful roosters.
      Thomas Lamprogiorgos, Jan 5, 2018
  4. babychicks7
    i have leghorns they dont mind confindment great layers eggs very large many double yokes and do go in at night whth out any problems
      Better Than Rubies likes this.
  5. robinSnest63
    My 2 girls was the 1st to start laying out of all 8 of my chickens...very friendly...love my chickens
      Better Than Rubies likes this.
    1. Tiwanda
      How old were your leghorns when they started laying?
      Tiwanda, Nov 16, 2017
      Better Than Rubies likes this.
  6. Brawley Leigh
    I only have 2 dark brown leghorns but they are VERY friendly, following me around like puppies. They have to be right there investigating when I work in the garden. They come running when they hear the back door open. Easy to catch but really do not like being held...I'm working on that. They put themselves to bed in the coop each night around 7:30, all I have to do is go lock them in. These girls are only 14.5 weeks so have not started to lay yet and I'm looking forward to that time. Possibly only having 2 and hand feeding treats is why they come running but so far I'm very happy with their personalities. Have to add however that when I zip out the back door to retrieve something very quickly they beat me inside almost every time...even when they weren't on the porch when I went out...stinkers!! Oh, and the LOVE Greek yogurt, plain variety.
      Itty Biddy Barn likes this.
    1. Itty Biddy Barn
      I have one black leghorn. She is BY FAR the friendliest girl I have. I've had her 2 days and she's already following me around. Also, she's very protective over the 4 Orpington's I have. They're much smaller than her & the 3 RI Red's I have. The RIR's are bullies and pick on the smaller birds incessantly, so the leghorn will stand between like a mediator. *giggle*
      Itty Biddy Barn, Aug 13, 2017
      Brawley Leigh likes this.
  7. TheCochinMomma
    Lol my white leghorn is the bravest of all my hen's!
      Itty Biddy Barn likes this.
    Can anyone tell me if they've ordered from Cackle Hatchery, especially any White Leghorns, Rhode Island Reds or Golden Comets, Buff Orpingtons, White Rocks, Barred Rocks, Wyandottes, or Easter Eggers? I have a batch of Leghorns now (one hen who I love a lot and a bunch of roosters I want to get rid of). I got a batch of Black Australorps from Chickens from Backyards (which has great service) that are extremely skidish and unfriendly. Also, if I get any new breeds again, I want to try to make sure that are somewhat friendly, fairly docile and/or at least will fit well in a mixed flock without much aggression (allowing for a normal pecking order of course) and be easy to handle.
    1. TheCochinMomma
      I got 18 chickes my last batch n the only one that comes near me and let's me cuddle is my cochin
      TheCochinMomma, Jul 25, 2017
  9. South OH Chicks
    I have 3 brown leghorns, they are to timid for me. I wont have them again.
  10. Turk Raphael
    Don't be sorry. It's good to have a little fun.

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