Appenzeller Chickens: The Showy Swiss Breed

Appenzeller Chickens are an ornamental breed that comes from Switzerland. There are two types that are known as the Spitzhauben and the Barthuhner.

Breed Facts:

Size: Standard Male: 4.5 Ibs. / Standard Female: 3.5 Ibs. / Bantam Male: 24 oz. / Bantam Female: 20 oz.

Comb, Wattles & Earlobes: They have a red V-shaped comb that is moderately large and oblong red wattles. The earlobes are moderately large and white. Color: The beak is dark horn and the eyes are dark brown. The shanks and toes are blue.

Black: They have standard black plumage.

Golden Spangled: Standard golden spangled plumage.

Silver Spangled: Standard silver spangled plumage.

Place of Origin: Switzerland

Conservation Status: N/A

Special Qualities: An ornamental layer with an interesting top hat.


There are two types of this breed. The first is the Spitzhauben which has a rather funky looking top hat that sticks straight up and doesn't cover the eyes as much as the Polish breeds. The Barthuhner is the other. Neither of these are recognized by the APA or ABA. In North America, you can find the Spitzhauben from some breeders, but the Barhuhner is almost non-existent.

These are very active birds that are good fliers. They can take care of themselves and are great free range birds and foragers.They often roost in trees if allowed to do so. Considering these traits, they do not do well in confinement.

The hens lay a fair amount of medium-size white eggs and will occasionally go broody.



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