BREED NAME: Kuro Gashiwa, Kurokashiwa
BRIEF DESCRIPTION: The Kuro Gashiwa chicken or Kurokashiwa is an old long-tailed and long-crowing breed that comes from Northern Central Japan.
The breed is in a unique class with other similar Japanese breeds that grace us with Japan’s signature eccentricity of flowing voice and tail. Experts disagree that this ornamental Japanese chicken should be included in the class of long-crowers and the breed is not an official part of the singer group.
With many similarities to the Tomaru, the Kuro Gashiwa chicken is distinct carrying its longer tail and body lower to the ground. The ornamental Kurokashiwa is definitely the forerunner of the longer-legged Tomaru. Tomaru is more of a country chicken with less emphasis on flowing tail. Ironicly, broodiness has nearly been lost in this “country” cousin, the Tomaru. Kurokashiwa, The Facts:
Class: Light Size: Standard Male: 4-5 Ibs. / Standard Female: 3-4 Ibs. Comb, Wattles & Earlobes: Hen faces have black skin pigmentation and roosters more of a red and black pigmentation which can often be seen at the base of their bright red single combs.
Medium-small to medium combs, wattles and lobes are red though the black pigment may drift partially into combs, especially in hens.
Combs have few points, five generally being the most. Color: Self-black feathering throughout. Feet bottoms are a dark olive-green, legs are black with an olive tint. Toenails are supposed to be a dark tone of an ivory/grey. Place of Origin: Japan Conservation Status: Rare
Special Qualities: Often in roosters there are 2 – 4 long sickle feathers, increasing in length more so in the second year of development. The form and beautiful fullness of tail are more or less pronounced depending on the blood lines.
Saddle feathers follow suit, being numerous but not overly long. Exporting the breed has been banned during the 1990’s, making them rare and bloodlines very precious outside Japan. It’s possible that only two viable flocks now exist outside Japan. The crow of the Kurokashiwa rooster is long, low and even unlike many rooster crows that are varied with some pauses and choppy sounds.
Fanciers of the breed have reported regular socializing makes Kurokashiwa become extremely tame and an excellent pet chicken. The breed’s large size makes them a dual purpose chicken with hens exhibiting consistent broodiness and good mothering instincts.