Hatching March to August.
The Barnevelder is one of the breeds of chickens best known for their ability to lay very dark brown colored eggs. Like their eggs, these chickens are very dark and very attractive. Roosters and hens are mostly a mixture of dark mahogany and black, but the feathers have a double lace patterning and a tremendous amount of sheen so the overall effect is of bronzes and green luster.
Production: Barnevelders are good layers of dark brown eggs with a slight coppery tone. One could expect approximately 150 eggs per year. They are also relatively heavy birds can be used for meat purposes as well.
Temperament: Barnevelders are active and confident birds. They are solid foragers and docile and friendly with other chickens. They are birds that seem to want to get down to business and seem to be always busy foraging. Hens very rarely go broody.
History: The Barnevelder is a relatively newly developed breed of chicken. They are named after the region of the Netherlands, called Barneveld, which is the Dutch center for poultry breeding and production. The Barnevelder breed was painstakingly created over years of crossing traditional Dutch breeds with Asian breeds and even some Orpingtons. The main goal was to create a breed that would lay prolific amounts of very dark brown copper-tinged eggs and continue laying well despite the long cold and dark Northern European winter. And the resulting Barnevelder Chickens are indeed hardy and vigorous egg layers of very dark brown eggs. The breed was officially recognized right before World War I at the first World Poultry Congress of the World Poultry Science Association in Holland. There are several color variations in Holland; however the APA currently only recognizes the Double-Laced.
Conservation Status: Barnevelders are rare in the U.S., but are gaining popularity as poultry enthusiasts have started searching for dark egg laying breeds with fervor.
Body Type: Barnevelders are sturdy looking and compact fowl. They have a straight upright comb with well-defined points. Comb and wattles are bright red. Legs and feet are sturdy and yellow.
Weight: Cockerel 6 lbs, Pullet 5 lbs
APA Class: Continental, 1991
Photo courtesy of Brenda Eldridge