The Delaware breed, as the name implies, originated from Delaware, United States late in 1940. George Ellis crossed New Hampshire Red and a Barred Plymouth Rock with the intention of creating a breed of chicken with the same egg laying capabilities of its parents but with improved meat potential. The product of that particular cross is what was then known as the Indian Rivers. This Delaware breed, unlike many, has only one variety called the Barred Silver Columbian. Although the Delaware was once just of relative importance, its number dwindled to a few hundred, hence why it’s now classified as critically endangered by organizations such as the American Livestock Breeds Conservancy.
- Egg Size:
- Egg Color:
- Egg Laying Rating:
- Very Good
- Chicken Size:
Created originally as a commercial, dual-purpose bred of chicken, the Delaware today make excellent backyard chickens with their very good egg laying ability - average of four large eggs per week, even into winter months.
A notable characteristic a Delaware chicken has is a unique-patterned plumage, accepted into the American Poultry Association's Standard of Perfection. Though both have predominantly white plumage, the rooster has black bars on its white tail feathers, while the hen has black tail with white lacing. In standard size, a cock weighs 8.5 lbs, while the hen at 6.5 lbs.